source:MLS

LA Galaxy say goodbye to Samuel, terminate Brazilian’s loan

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Samuel’s time in Major League Soccer is over; at least, for now. Eight games into his career with the LA Galaxy, the Fluminense striker has had his loan terminated. As the team announced on Thursday, the 23-year-old will be returning to Brazil.

In 12 all-competition games for the Galaxy, Samuel only scored once – a goal against Tijuana in CONCACAF Champions League. During his eight MLS appearances, four starts, the forward failed to find the scoresheet, alloying Gyasi Zardes and Rob Friend to claim his playing time.

With a base salary of $50,000, Samuel’s departure won’t clear major salary cap space, but if he was unlikely to see playing time going forward, there’s no point to keeping him in Carson. Not even capable of winning significant time in U.S. Open Cup (29 minutes in two games), Samuel didn’t appear to be in 2015 Bruce Arena’s plan. Whatever spare minutes surface while LA pursues playoff positioning, might as well give them to Chandler Hoffman.

When it was announced this winter, the loan deal seemed like a good one, with Samuel’s nine goals in Brazil’s Serie A hinting he could be a useful piece for the Galaxy. But as Gilberto’s struggles in Toronto have shown, goals in Brazil may not necessarily translate into success in North America. Particularly for young players tested to adapt off the field, the challenges of new life so far from home can compound hurdles on the field.

It makes it difficult to know what could have been. Arena, having seen Samuel play almost every day for over five months, certainly knows by now, but 358 Major League Soccer minutes just isn’t that much time. That slump could prove an unfortunate blip, if a player has the skills to recover.

The Galaxy apparently didn’t see those skills. Or, perhaps, Samuel or Fluminense didn’t want to wait for LA to carve out playing time. Regardless, the 23-year-old is gone, ending his brief California sojourn.

MLS Three Things: RBNY beats Atlanta, is a special club right now

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At this point, Jesse Marsch could take the USMNT job, Tyler Adams could bolt for the Bundesliga, and we’d still have to select the New York Red Bulls to finish with a home playoff game.

[ MORE: Willian’s shot at Conte ]

That’s how well run RBNY is these days, which is to take nothing away from their coach and 19-year-old star, but considering they navigated a solid CONCACAF Champions League run en route to this start… well…. wow.

On a night when Luis Robles’ ironman streak ended, Kaku recorded two assists, and Ezequiel Barco bagged his second goal in three matches, they don’t even meet the requirements of our three things.

Form giants deliver more goals

Marsch’s men have been shutout once this season, and most multiple goals in four-consecutive wins. Three of those four wins have come on the road, at LA, Colorado, and now Atlanta.

RBNY has the best points-per-game in Major League Soccer, has scored the joint-most goals despite playing in the second-fewest games, and is allowing barely more than a goal-a-game.

Bet against ’em. We dare ya.

BWP delivers the goods

RBNY’s 33-year-old English star scored twice and won a penalty that Daniel Royer converted as he continued his assault on all future Red Bulls’ hopes of becoming the club’s leading scorer.

Bradley Wright-Phillips has almost 50 more goals than his nearest competitor, Juan Pablo Angel, and he makes headers look like child’s play.

Victory comes with a price

Kemar Lawrence was lost with a scary-looking face-plant on a clearance, and needed to be stretchered off the pitch. Hopefully it’s not long-term for the Jamaican back.

Willian “edits” Conte out of FA Cup champions photo

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Willian is not a fan of Antonio Conte.

Come to another conclusion if you like, but it’s hard to argue the Brazilian wizard’s feelings following his Instagram post after Chelsea beat Manchester United in the FA Cup Final.

[ MORE: Matic wants squad changes at Man Utd ]

Willian covered his manager in trophies following the win, and it’d be a stretch to call that a tribute to the Italian’s tactical brilliance.

The player recorded seven goals and six assists despite playing less than all but 12 Chelsea players in league play (12th place Alvaro Morata had 11 and 6).

We’re accepting alternative explanations for the since-deleted Instagram photo below:

Elis scores twice as Dynamo beat Fire 3-2

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BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. (AP) Alberth Elis scored two second-half goals to help the Houston Dynamo beat the Chicago Fire 3-2 on Sunday for their first road win of the season.

Elis, on a one-on-one breakaway, cut back to evade defender Johan Kappelhof and ripped a right-footer from the center of the box into the back of the net to give Houston (4-3-3) a 3-2 lead in the 74th minute.

[ MORE: Man Utd youngster gets USMNT call-up ]

The Dynamo’s Romell Quioto opened the scoring in the fourth, running onto a long through ball from Tomas Martinez and rolling the finish past sliding goalkeeper Richard Sanchez. Nemanja Nikolic tied it in the 14th minute and then fed Diego Campos for a goal about two minutes later. Elis converted from the spot to make it 2-2 early in the second half after Mauro Manotas drew a foul in the area conceded by Sanchez.

Chicago (3-6-2) has lost three of its last four games.

 

Inter Milan back in the Champions League after late heroics (video)

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It’s been more than a half-decade since Inter Milan qualified for the UEFA Champions League, an infamous run that ended on Sunday.

Inter scored twice in the final 13 minutes to beat fifth-place Lazio and advance into the Top Four via head-to-head record.

[ MORE: Man Utd youngster gets USMNT call-up ]

Lazio held 1-0 and 2-1 leads, but could not get the job done at home, collecting red cards in the 79th minute and stoppage time.

Uruguayan midfielder Matias Vecino scored his third goal of the season, redirecting a corner kick home in the 81st minute, as Inter clinched fourth place in Serie A.