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

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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.

[ WATCH: Porter nominates Pep Guardiola for ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, gets doused ]

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

UCL, LIVE: Tottenham vs. Real Madrid; Man City, Liverpool in action

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Three Premier League teams are in UEFA Champions League action on Tuesday and they are involved in some huge matches across Europe.

[ LIVE: Champions League scores ]

Tottenham Hotspur head to reigning European champions Real Madrid in Group H with both teams winning their opening two group games. Can Harry Kane and Co. stun the Santiago Bernabeu?

Manchester City host Napoli in Group F in what looks like a very tasty game in Group F and Liverpool head to Maribr in a must-win game in Group E after they drew their opening two matches.

Elsewhere, FC Porto’s trip to RB Leipzig looks set to be an intriguing clash in Group G.

Below is the full schedule for Tuesday’s games, which all kick off at 2:45 p.m. ET and you can follow all the action live by clicking on the link above.

[ MORE: Champions League standings


Tuesday’s UCL games

Group E
Spartak Moscow vs. Sevilla
Maribor vs. Liverpool

Group F
Man City vs. Napoli
Feyenoord vs. Shakthar Donetsk

Group G
RB Leipzig vs. FC Porto
Monaco vs. Besiktas

Group H
APOEL vs. Borussia Dortmund
Real Madrid vs. Tottenham Hotspur

Top 25 moments in Premier League history: 6-4

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To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Premier League we thought it would be great to count down our top 25 moments from a quarter of a century of action.

[ VIDEO: Top 25 moments in PL history ]

Each week we will release our best moments and you can keep track of the full list here.

Below are numbers 6-4 as we enter the top five moments in PL history.


6 – Wayne Rooney‘s score a stunning first PL goal for Everton vs. Arsenal in 2002

5 – Man United fight back from 3-0 down v Tottenham in 2001

4 – Liverpool vs. Newcastle United battles in the mid 1990s

Heath, Smith sidelined with injuries for USWNT

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CHICAGO (AP) Forward Tobin Heath and defender Taylor Smith are sidelined with injuries that will keep them out of the U.S. women’s national team training camp in Louisiana ahead of two upcoming matches against South Korea.

Heath is nursing an ankle injury and Smith her shoulder. Both women were hurt in the NWSL championship match last Saturday, the U.S. Soccer Federation said Monday.

The Americans play Thursday at New Orleans and Sunday in Cary, North Carolina.

Neither player will be replaced on the roster and coach Jill Ellis will have 18 players dressed for each game.

Report: Sam Allardyce, Laurent Blanc want to be next USMNT boss

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Yep, this is true.

Sam Allardyce has thrown his hat into the ring with the U.S. national team searching for a new manager, and so has former Paris Saint-Germain and France boss Laurent Blanc.

[ MORE: Latest USMNT news ]

According to ESPN, sources close to Allardyce say he is up for the USMNT challenge which would “enable him to impose a long-term strategy and secure a legacy in a nation regarded as a growing force.”

A report from France Football states that Blanc is also interested in replacing Bruce Arena, who resigned last week following the USA’s shock defeat at Trinidad and Tobago which saw them miss the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

Hmmm. After Jurgen Klinsmann’s time in charge of the USMNT, are the days of big name foreign managers over?

These are two relatively high-profile names with experience of managing national teams (in Allardyce’s case one game with England before The Telegraph sting scandal) but neither have experience of Major League Soccer or the unique challenges of CONCACAF.

Allardyce often talks fondly about his year spent with the Tampa Bay Rowdies in the NASL during his playing days and has used many techniques he picked up from the U.S. sporting realm in his lengthy coaching career which has spanned Premier League clubs Bolton, Newcastle, Blackburn, West Ham United, Sunderland and Crystal Palace.

Yet the scandal which cut his ill-fated time in charge of England short will likely raise eyebrows if he is to be considered for the U.S. job and his direct style of play is not to the taste of many purists out there.

When it comes to Blanc, his ultra-defensive style of play may turn off those in charge of U.S. Soccer too but there’s no doubting his record with a title win at Bordeaux in 2009 before he took France to the last eight of EURO 2012, and then led PSG to three-straight French titles from 2012-13, is impressive.

The fact that these two managers have reportedly thrown their hats into the ring suggests just how highly the job is regarded worldwide, even if U.S. Soccer fans believe the program is currently at an all-time low after the embarrassment of failing to qualify for the 2018 World Cup.

In his conference call with reporters last week U.S. Soccer Federation (USSF) president Sunil Gulati refused to rule out anybody for the USMNT job, stating that no specific profile (American, non-American coaches etc.) is preferred in their search for a new manager.

Many U.S. fans are hoping for a domestic manager to take charge with Peter Vermes, Ben Olsen and Jesse Marsch all mentioned with their vast knowledge of the U.S. national team and MLS setup.

Let’s wait and see what happens but after the Klinsmann era, one would suggest that USSF would be slightly hesitant to go overseas in their search for a new U.S. national team manager.