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MLS: Early goal, red card resign Galaxy to 1-0 loss to Timbers

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The game in 100 words (or more): Through two weeks, the LA Galaxy’s post-Bruce Arena (and Robbie Keane) (and Landon Donovan (again)) era isn’t exactly going to plan, to say the least. Having suffered defeat in their season opener last week, to the current Supporters’ Shield holders, FC Dallas — which, understandable — a positive result was so badly needed against the Portland Timbers on Sunday. What LA ended up with, instead, was a 1-0 deficit after eight minutes, thanks to a devastating counter-attack goal scored by Diego Chara; a man disadvantage after 34 minutes, when Jelle Van Damme was sent off; and an injury to their lone remaining superstar, Giovani dos Santos, which forced him off at halftime. Portland, meanwhile, have two wins from two games and look every bit on par with the likes of FC Dallas and New York City FC in the (very, very, very early) race for the 2017 Shield.

[ MORE: Saturday’s MLS (afternoon) roundup | Late-night ]

Three moments that mattered

8′ — Chara, Valeri link up on devastating counter — Sebastian Blanco‘s ball out of the back hits Chara in stride, but it’s Chara’s header that turns a run-of-the-mill counter-attacking opportunity into immediate danger for LA. Diego Valeri has acres of space to run onto the ball, and he’s as unselfish as they come, happy to make the simple square pass for Chara in the face of a wide open goal.

34′ — Guzman gets Van Damme sent off — There’s a lot to unpack here, so let’s dive right in: 1) David Guzman dived; 2) Guzman appears to have seriously injured his collarbone or shoulder upon landing; 3) Van Damme made zero contact with Guzman; 4) Van Damme was also late with his challenge and arrived wildly. All things considered, everything seemed to work itself out pretty well.

90+4′ — Gleeson denies Villarreal in spectacular fashion — Jose Villarreal flicked his header on from the top of the six-yard box, which gave Jake Gleeson roughly 0.0002 seconds to react, dive low and to his right, and preserve the victory. Just an unbelievable save.

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Men of the match: Diego Chara

Goalscorers: Chara (8′)

MLS Playoff bracket, dates set: Chicago, Vancouver host Tues.

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Major League Soccer’s playoff bracket is set. Our staff predictions are coming Tuesday before the first round match-ups, but here’s what we’ll be watching…

[ MORE: Mbappe named Golden Boy ]

The chase begins with Chicago and the Red Bulls, and San Jose heading to Vancouver. The Quakes drew the ‘Caps just over a week ago, on Oct. 15.

First round
(E3) Chicago vs. (E6) New York Red Bulls — 8:30 p.m. ET Tuesday
(W3) Vancouver vs. (W6) San Jose — 10:30 p.m. ET Tuesday
(E4) Atlanta vs. (E5) Columbus — 7 p.m. ET Wednesday
(W4) Houston vs. (W5) Sporting KC — 9:30 p.m. ET Wednesday

Conference semifinals
(W1) Portland vs.  San Jose, Houston, or Sporting KC
(W2) Seattle vs. Houston, Sporting KC, or Vancouver
(E1) Toronto vs. New York Red Bulls, Atlanta, or Columbus
(E2) New York City vs. Atlanta, Columbus, or Chicago

Conference finals
Eastern Conference — Nov. 21 and Nov. 28 or 29
Western Conference — Nov. 21 and Nov. 30

MLS Cup Final
At finalist with best record — 4 p.m. ET Dec. 9

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Who will replace Koeman at Everton?

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Where will Everton turn in search of their next manager?

U23s coach David Unsworth is the front-runner to take over, according to several betting sites — not that we’d partake in such madness — and the 44-year-old boasts 312 career appaearances for the Toffees.

[ MORE: Everton sacks Ronald Koeman ]

As for who else could be in frame for the gig, there are names (quite) familiar and new.

David Moyes — This one is an eyebrow-raiser, as Moyes has had little if any success since leaving Everton and ended his time at Sunderland with a sexist takedown of a journalist. But the 54-year-old Scot spent more than 11 years at Everton before leaving for Manchester United, and it’s not like the Toffees wanted him to skip town. He was thrice League Manager of the Year at Goodison Park.

Sean Dyche — The Burnley boss has overachieved time and again at Turf Moor, and the Clarets are one of the smallest outfits the Premier League has ever seen. A move to Everton could be a big and safe enough step to warrant his affection.

Carlo Ancelotti — He’s said he’s not returning to a manager’s seat this season, but the Italian may relish the chance to take a skillful team and organize it into its rightful potential. And we think he’s do a magnificent job.

Chris Coleman — He’s waffled on staying in his position at Wales, and the club’s absence from this summer’s World Cup must have him eyeing the club scene. He’s hasn’t led a club since 2012, having led AEL, Coventry City, Real Sociedad, and Fulham.

Phil Neville — The Manchester United and Everton playing legend doesn’t have first chair experience, but may be able to rally the troops. His latest stint was as an assistant in brother Gary’s tough, short campaign at Valencia.

Although… his recent prediction record isn’t hot.

Longshots: Mikel Arteta, Luis Enrique, Eddie Howe, Thomas Tuchel, Sam Allardyce, Manuel Pellegrini, Frank De Boer.

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Three seriously injured, 120 detained in Bruges hooligan riot

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BRUSSELS (AP) Authorities are investigating a hooligan riot which seriously injured three people and forced Brugge police to detain 120 following the match between Club Brugge and Antwerp.

[ MORE: Mbappe wins Golden Boy ]

Local police chief Dirk Van Nuffel says one policeman was among the seriously wounded as authorities sought to contain a brawl between Belgian fans reinforced by others who had come from the Netherlands.

By Monday morning all were released but investigators were still seeking to see who was at the core of the fighting. Van Nuffel says such hooligan fighting “hadn’t been seen for years.”

Everton fires Ronald Koeman

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A 5-2 home loss versus Arsenal sent Everton into the Premier League drop zone, and that’s apparently a bridge too far for the Toffees when it comes to their managerial position.

Ronald Koeman is out at Goodison Park.

[ MORE: Who will replace him? ]

Everton sits 18th in the Premier League with eight points, it’s minus-11 goal differential second-worst in the top flight. Its 18 goals conceded are third-worst, and only three clubs have scored fewer goals than its seven.

The Toffees won two rounds in the Europa League, beating Ružomberok and Hajduk Split, but have lost to Atalanta and Lyon while drawing Apollon Limassol in Group E play.

Everton faces Chelsea in League Cup play on Wednesday before a critical early season match at Leicester City on Sunday.

[ MORE: Mbappe named Golden Boy ]

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