It’s official: World No. 3 Colombia to face USMNT in London on Nov. 14

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James and Jermaine. Jozy and Jackson. Fabian and Falcao. Green and Guarin.

The United States men’s national team will put its top names against the team thought by many to be amongst the best in the world: FIFA No. 3 Colombia.

[ VIDEO: Top Ten goals of the MLS season so far ]

The mid-November game will be at Craven Cottage in London, England, but it comes with a few changes. Obviously, the opponent will be the Coffeemakers, not Croatia (which made waves with an official announcement a few weeks back). And the date is two days later from the original reported date at Fulham’s home stadium.

November 14 is the date for the USMNT and Colombia, and the States will finish off their 2014 four days later against Ireland.

From MLSSoccer.com:

“Colombia showed in the World Cup that they are one of the top teams in the world,” said USMNT head coach Jurgen Klinsmann in a statement. “They have some tremendous attacking talent like Radamel Falcao at Manchester United, James Rodriguez who won the Golden Boot at the World Cup and now plays at Real Madrid, Adrian Ramos from Dortmund who was one of the top scorers in the Bundesliga, and Carlos Bacca who won the Europa League with Sevilla.

“So overall, it’s a squad with a lot of experience playing at the highest level, and this will be another great benchmark for us. We are thrilled to be playing at Craven Cottage, which holds so many good memories for US players. It will be a unique experience.”

Craven Cottage is the home of Fulham FC, for whom a number of current and former US internationals including Clint Dempsey, Brian McBride and Carlos Bocanegra have played. The Cottagers currently boast 18-year-old midfielder Emerson Hyndman, who made his USMNT debut in a friendly against the Czech Republic in September, on their roster.

Here’s a chance for the States to make some big waves. We’ll be watching, and we’re already anticipating the date.

Now which MLS players will be available, and which will be locked up in the playoffs? Dempsey, Omar Gonzalez, Jermaine Jones and DeAndre Yedlin are among the regular starters on top teams in Major League Soccer, which does have an international break but a congested schedule. L.A. and Seattle are guaranteed to play on Nov. 9 & 10, respectively.

FOLLOW LIVE: Southampton v. Derby County

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Southampton and Derby County chase the final spot in the fourth round proper of the 2018-19 FA Cup with a replay at St. Mary’s on Wednesday.

[ FOLLOW: FA Cup scoreboard ]

The clubs drew 2-2 at Pride Park on Jan. 5, with a Nathan Redmond 2-0 lead going to waste for the Premier League visitors.

The victor gets a trip to the Crown Ground to face League One’s Accrington Stanley on Jan. 26.

Full fourth round fixture list

Jan. 25
Arsenal v. Manchester United

Jan. 26
Accrington Stanley v. Derby County or Southampton
Brighton and Hove Albion v. West Bromwich Albion
Bristol City v. Bolton
Doncaster Rovers v. Oldham Athletic
Man City v. Burnley
Middlesbrough v. Newport County
Newcastle United v. Watford
Portsmouth v. Queens Park Rangers
Swansea City v. Gillingham
Shrewsbury Town v. Wolves
Millwall v. Everton
AFC Wimbledon v. West Ham United

Jan. 27
Crystal Palace v. Spurs
Chelsea v. Sheffield Wednesday

Jan. 28
Barnet v. Brentford

Leeds’ Bielsa admits he spied “all the rivals”; How widespread is spying?

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Managerial darling Marcelo Bielsa spoke out Wednesday as fallout continues from a Leeds United scout caught spying on Derby County last week.

Bielsa says he’s spied on every team the club has played in the Championship this season.

[ MORE: Neymar praises Weah ]

How rare is this? And how big of a role has it played in Leeds’ 4-point lead in the race for automatic promotion to the Premier League? From the BBC:

“I observed all the rivals we played against and watched the training sessions of all opponents,” he said. “All the information I need to clarify, I gather it without watching the training session of the opponent, so why did I send someone to watch them? Just because I thought I wasn’t violating the norm. I gathered information that I can obtain in another way.

“We feel guilty if we don’t work enough, it [watching the opponents train] allows us to have less anxiety and in my case I am stupid enough to allow this kind of behavior.”

The 63-year-old Argentine has spent time at Lille, Lazio, Marseille, Athletic Bilbao, and Espanyol in addition to running the national teams of Argentina and Chile.

It does raise the question of how much spying is done in soccer. We know that the NFL’s New England Patriots cheated during a game against the New York Jets and that MLB teams try to steal signals, but sneaking around a training session… is that okay? Should it be?

55-goal Martinez re-ups with Atlanta through 2023

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Josef Martinez has signed a new deal with Atlanta United, with a contract tying him to the club through the 2023 Major League Soccer season.

Martinez, 25, has 55 goals in 61 games for the Five Stripes since arriving from Torino in 2017, a strike rate unlike anything the Venezuelan had been able to do in his career with the Serie A club, Young Boys, or Caracas.

[ MORE: Neymar praises Weah ]

That development has him happy to lock down a new Designated Player deal in Georgia, one that certainly would raise his transfer value. From AtlUtd.com:

“This means a lot to me because of the affection that the fans have shown me, that the fans show all of the players. It’s unique,” Martinez said. “They recognize the effort that you give and they know you did everything to win, and I think that’s why we love playing here. I have to thank everyone. My teammates, the city, my family and friends, because this is a dream I’ve always had. I’ve said before that I don’t want to go anywhere because this is my home. You can expect more work, more intensity, because that’s who I am. I want to win. I want to do everything for my teammates and for the city.”

With neither Newcastle nor Real Betis ready to meet Atlanta’s transfer fee for Miguel Almiron, the Five Stripes are in a bit of a bind with a reported deal for expected DP Pity Martinez despite having the league maximum three DPs in Martinez, Almiron, and Ezequiel Barco. Perhaps the European clubs are trying to force Atlanta’s hand.

Men In Blazers Podcast: De Gea heroics; Liverpool, Man City wins

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Rog and Davo applaud David De Gea‘s goalkeeping heroics in Manchester United’s 1-0 victory over Tottenham. Plus, wins for Liverpool and City in the title race.

All of the MiB content — pods, videos and stories can be seen here, but to really stay in touch, follow, subscribe, click here:

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