At half: Donovan exits, Diskerud scores, Gyau injured in busy half

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Fate seemed to beg Landon Donovan to score in his final half as a United States. The goal didn’t come, but that didn’t stop his 41st minute exit from being as bittersweet as you’d like.

Running across the field to salute his fans after hugging his teammates and some officials, Donovan shared a moment with his smiling coach Jurgen Klinsmann, with who things have often been just bitter. A minute’s standing ovation from the Connecticut crowd made it nice.

Oh, and the game. The States lead Ecuador 1-0 on an early Mix Diskerud goal.

[ RELATED: Everything Landon Donovan-related from a busy USMNT week ]

Follow the second half live on Soccerly’s match center here

Donovan’s first touch was a pretty one, back heeling an end line runner for DeAndre Yedlin.

[ RELATED: Everything Landon Donovan-related from a busy USMNT week ]

Yedlin turned provider after Jozy Altidore found him in the 18. The Sounders back fed Mix Diskerud, who made no doubt about a fifth-minute finish. It was 1-0 States early.

Joe Gyau nearly set the table for bedlam, finding Donovan only to see the Galaxy striker’s shot dribble wide of the far post. But the Borussia Dortmund youngster’s moment of the game came later, and it wasn’t good.

Gyau came up lame with a left knee injury and immediately called for a sub. He left the field on crutches, his left knee wrapped in ice.

Altidore barely missed making it 2-0 on a great run in the 18th minute.

With time running out on his 30-minute curfew, Donovan missed again when he cranked a shot off the right pipe and couldn’t jab the rebound past Paredes.

Brad Guzan made a fabulous save on Enner Valencia after the Ecuador star striker took advantage of a Timmy Chandler gaffe to race in on goal. The 1v1 shot was parried, and Guzan made another save moments later in the 28th minute.

And in the 38th minute, time well past his exit time, Donovan hit a low shot wide after Altidore went out of his way to find the finale man.

His moment came soon after.

Paredes came up big before halftime after Bobby Wood’s cross was cleared to Yedlin. The Ecuador keeper stopped Yedlin’s close range shot.

Lineups

United States: Guzan, Chandler, Orozco, Brooks, Garza; Yedlin, Bedoya, Diskerud, Gyau (Wood, 21′); Donovan (Corona, 41′), Altidore

Goal: Diskerud (5′)

Subs: Rimando, Gonzalez, Ream, Ibarra, Wondolowski, Morales, Corona, Wood, Gil

Ecuador: Paredes, Cangá, Erazo, Ayoví; R. Ibarra, Castillo, Noboa, Cazares; Penilla, E. Valencia

FOLLOW LIVE — Berhalter’s USMNT taking on Chile

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The U.S. men’s national team, without a pair of prominent youngsters and building blocks for the future, is set to take on Chile at BBCA Compass Stadium in Houston.

[ FOLLOW LIVE: USMNT v. Chile ]

Following the departures of Tyler Adams and Weston McKennie from camp, Gregg Berhalter has made changes up and down the squad from Thursday’s 1-0 victory over Ecuador.

Hit the link above to follow along live, and check back with PST for a full recap and player ratings after the game.

Prime minister May joins England players in calling for strong punishment

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LONDON (AP) — British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday urged soccer authorities to take strong action against Montenegro after England players faced a torrent of racial abuse during a European Championship qualifying match.

UEFA charged the Montenegro Football Association over its fans’ racist behavior in Podgorica on Monday night after England players Callum Hudson-Odoi and Danny Rose complained about being targeted with monkey chants during the team’s 5-1 victory.

UEFA’s anti-discrimination group had sent a monitor to the game because there was judged to be a “high risk” of racism and their evidence will now feed into a disciplinary case that will be heard on May 16 by European soccer’s governing body.

The treatment of England players was debated in the House of Commons between discussions about the Brexit deadlock and there was an intervention from May’s Downing Street office.

“The abuse England players were subjected to last night was disgusting and completely unacceptable,” said James Slack, the prime minister’s spokesman. “It is right that UEFA are now investigating. We urge them to do this quickly and to take strong and swift action.”

In a sign of the extent of the racism problem in European soccer, UEFA announced a separate investigation on Tuesday into abuse aimed at Hudson-Odoi while playing for Chelsea. UEFA said it appointed an inspector to assess a complaint by Chelsea that the 18-year-old winger was targeted with racist insults by Dynamo Kiev fans during the London club’s 5-0 win in Ukraine in the Europa League.

“It is a disaster,” UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin said of racism in European football. “I cannot believe these people still exist.”

In the Montenegro incident, the Fare network which monitors discrimination at games in Europe will provide evidence which could lead to a partial or full stadium closure for the team’s next Euro 2020 qualifier in June against Kosovo.

“We had an observer present who picked up evidence of racial abuse,” Fare said in a statement. “Our monitoring team have been compiling the evidence we have before presenting it to UEFA.

We commend the reaction of the England players involved, no human being should have to face abuse and vilification for their race or identity, something that many Montenegrins will understand from the divisive and bloody recent history of the Balkans.”

In one unsavory incident, England winger Raheem Sterling cupped his ears after scoring England’s fifth goal and Montenegro fans responded with jeers before an object — reportedly a lighter — was thrown onto the field. It was picked up by Hudson-Odoi.

“All of us know what skin color we are,” Sterling said after the game. “It’s not like you are telling us anything new.”

Hudson-Odoi, in another post-match interview, mimicked the monkey chants he and Rose heard.

“We hope that UEFA will act decisively, the sanctions that could be applied for an offense of this kind range from a partial stadium closure to full stadium closure,” Fare said in a statement. “These sanctions are being applied regularly for offenses in UEFA competitions, often against resistance from supporter groups and football stakeholders.

“The challenge of tackling racism and other forms of discrimination in European football however remains an ongoing issue. The societal change and education that is the ultimate solution is slow to take place. Even in the countries of Western Europe where there has been investment and focus on these issues, discrimination remains a stain on football.”

The Football Association of Montenegro said it was only “alleged” there was “racist behavior of few spectators” but committed to identifying anyone deemed responsible and banning them from all matches in the country.

“At the matches played by our respective national teams until now, we have not had any incidents related to religious, gender or racial discrimination and we are fully convinced that there will not be any such incidents in the future,” the federation said. “In a multicultural and multiethnic society as Montenegro is, there is not any space for such conduct, which was the feeling most intensively experienced by our guests from England during the previous two official matches they played in Podgorica.”

The English Football Association said much work is required to eradicate racism across the game.

“The issues we saw last night are not isolated to any specific country, and despite progress English football still has its own incidents of discrimination,” the FA said.

“Our experience is that by combining both sanctions and education, whilst working alongside campaigners such as Kick It Out, real progress can be made.”

Inter and Milan close to announcing plans for new stadium

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MILAN (AP) Inter and AC Milan are close to announcing a joint project for a new stadium, casting aside potential renovations to the San Siro.

[ MORE: Serie A scores, schedule

Inter CEO Alessandro Antonello tells the Gazzetta dello Sport the clubs agree the best way forward is to build a new stadium next to the city-run San Siro then tear down the old stadium.

Antonello says, “Inter and Milan are working together. We still have work to do but the time is right. Soon we will inform the city of our shared choice. Milan needs a stadium worthy of the top European cities.”

The San Siro, officially named Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, opened in 1926 and has already had several renovations. Modernizing the San Siro again could take more time and money than building a new stadium – plus would require Inter and Milan to play elsewhere during construction.

More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/apf-Soccer and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

Young American undergoing cancer treatment to meet her Huddersfield hero

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A seven-year-old girl from Dallas, Texas will be meeting her hero in Huddersfield.

Bella has lost her hair during treatment for Medulloblastoma, a form of child brain cancer, and took comfort in watching shaved headed Aaron Mooy play for Huddersfield Town in the Premier League and at the World Cup for Australia.

After undergoing radiation treatment throughout the summer, Bella and her father spent plenty of time on the couch watching soccer as she rested from the intensive treatment.

The young American now has a Huddersfield kit with Mooy’s name and number on the back of the shirt, and the club came across her story on social media.

Bella and her father will now travel to the UK as guests of the club and will meet Mooy and watch him and the Terriers take on Leicester City on Saturday Apr. 6 at the John Smith’s Stadium.

Huddersfield Town’s commercial director Sean Jarvis revealed that Mooy and the club — with the help of local company PAXMAN who have a base in Texas for their caps which help with chemotherapy-induced hair loss — are delighted to welcome Bella to a PL game in April.

“Everyone at the club is looking forward to welcoming Bella over for her special trip in early April. Her story, and bravery, are extraordinary and she thoroughly deserves what should hopefully be a very special experience. The fact that she relates to Aaron’s shaved head is really beautiful and as soon as Aaron heard, he shared our desire to do something special for Bella and her family.”

As her mother Lauren explained, they hope Bella is coming towards the end of her treatment as they now wait for her immune system to recover.

In the meantime, she enjoys watching Mooy play via the FIFA World Cup video game or elsewhere, and she will now get the chance to meet him and watch him play in real life.