US Open Cup

US Open Cup semifinals preview: Dallas, Philly battle to host final


In the next 48 hours we’ll know the opponents for the 2014 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup final, with Philadelphia visiting FC Dallas on Tuesday and Chicago heading to Seattle on Wednesday.

The century-old competition has a bevy of former winners, from the familiar (DC United, L.A. Galaxy) to the lesser know (Brooklyn Italians, Bethlehem Steel) to the downright unfamiliar (St. Louis Simpkins-Ford, New Bedford Whalers).

Though the competition is now dominated by Major League Soccer teams, with the 1999 Rochester Rhinos the last non-MLS team to win the tournament, it’s still a boatload of fun. And Tuesday kicks off with a good match-up.

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The Union are the only remaining team to not have lifted the Cup, as Chicago has won four times, Seattle thrice and Dallas clinching its title in 1997. But the may have the juice to do the trick this year if they can get out of Texas alive, with an opportunity to become the first tourney champion from Pennsylvania since 1966.

The winner of Tuesday’s 9:30pm ET tilt gets to host the final in early Fall (The 2013 final was played on Oct. 1, with DC United besting Real Salt Lake 1-0).

Philly played host to Montreal this weekend in MLS play, a 2-1 win for the Union, while Dallas was home for a 3-1 win over Colorado.

Seattle and Chicago will tangle on Wednesday at 10:30pm ET, with the status of DeAndre Yedlin in question as his pending European move is still getting sorted out. The Sounders beat Houston at home on the weekend, while Chicago beat visiting New York 1-0.

Paths to the semis

FC Dallas – beat San Antonio Scorpions 2-0, Houston Dynamo 3-2 (et), Carolina Railhaws 5-2
Philadelphia – beat Harrisburg City 3-1, New York Cosmos 2-1, New England Revolution 2-0

Seattle – beat PSA Elite 5-0, San Jose Earthquakes 1-1 (PKs 4-1), Portland Timbers 3-1 (et)
Chicago – beat Pittsburgh Riverhounds 2-1, Columbus Crew 4-2, Atlanta Silverbacks 3-1

Sergio Aguero expects to miss a month with hamstring injury

Sergio Aguero
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After scoring five goals against Newcastle United, Sergio Aguero may have to wait a bit of time to get back to scoring in the Premier League.

The Manchester City striker lasted just 25 minutes in Argentina’s World Cup qualifier on Thursday, as he was stretchered off with a hamstring injury. 

Aguero underwent testing in Argentina, and told the local media “I think I’m going to be out for a month.”

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Manchester City and Argentina teammate Nicolas Otamendi said Aguero was in tears in the dressing room, and some reports have penned the injury as a torn hamstring.

If Aguero were to be ruled out for a month, he would miss City’s Champions League clash vs. Sevilla, as well as the massive Manchester derby away at United on October 25.

To make matters worse for City supporters, David Silva was forced off after just ten minutes while playing for Spain today. Silva took a harsh challenge from behind, and hobbled off with what looked to be an ankle injury. If Silva’s injury ends up being more than just a knock, City could be without their two most important players in the attack.

Bayern Munich’s Mario Gotze out 10-12 weeks with groin injury

SHANGHAI, CHINA - JULY 21:  Mario Goetze of FC Bayern Muenchen in action during the international friendly match between FC Bayern Muenchen and Inter Milan of the Audi Football Summit 2015 at Shanghai Stadium on July 21, 2015 in Shanghai, China.  (Photo by Lintao Zhang/Getty Images)
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Mario Gotze could be out of action until 2016 after picking up a groin injury on international duty.

The Bayern Munich midfielder suffered a tendon tear in his abductor muscle while stretching for a ball in Germany’s 1-0 loss to Ireland in EURO qualifiers on Thursday. He was taken off in the 35th minute.

Ruled out for 10-12 weeks, Gotze is likely to miss the rest of the first half of the season for Bayern. Their last league match of 2015 is on December 19, which is 11 weeks away. The Bundesliga then goes on winter break, with Bayern’s next match not until January 23.

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Gotze will miss both of Bayern’s upcoming Champions League matches against Arsenal, which is good news for the Gunners as they are in desperate need of a result.

However, Arjen Robben is back in training and will make his return to action within the coming weeks. After starting the Bundesliga seasons with eight wins out of eight, Robben’s return would add just another weapon to Pep Guardiola’s dominant attack.

Robben has not played since being injured in early September while playing for the Netherlands, and could feature for Bayern against Werder Bremen next week.