Who’s likely to land where in the Chivas USA dispersal draft? Mocking it out…

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Teams around Major League Soccer will get instant upgrades on Wednesday when the league holds a dispersal draft for the players of now-defunct Chivas USA.

Several players will either be unavailable or have uncertain status heading into the draft. The Goats’ best asset is unavailable, as Erick “Cubo” Torres belongs to Liga MX’s Chivas. MLS may be working out a deal to buy the young Mexican star, but that won’t keep him in the draft.

Ecuador’s World Cup midfielder Oswaldo Minda is out of contract in December, so a team could theoretically choose him and try to work out a new contract. That seems unlikely, and a few other Chivas USA players were on loan to the club, so forget about Felix Borja, Leandro Barrera and Luis Bolanos. Eriq Zavaleta is Sounders property, while Eric Avila is being sold to Santos Laguna.

[ MLS: Philadelphia adds former Fulham boss Meulensteen ]

There’s also the ban on trading picks, though one wonders if that prohibits teams from trading the players after they’ve been selected.

So where does that leave us for the draft? Let’s try mocking it out. There will likely be more than a few “passes” here, but we’ll assume everyone takes a player and have a little fun with a lot of spitballing.

1. FC Dallas – The top player on the board is goalkeeper Dan Kennedy, who worked wonders for the Goats. But FCD doesn’t necessarily need an upgrade at keeper with Peru national teamer Raul Fernandez and longtime backup Chris Seitz in the fold. Will they choose Kennedy?

I don’t think so. For one thing, Oscar Pareja has already worked with Chivas USA midfielders Marvin Chavez and Nathan Strugis in Colorado. Plus, there are arguments to be made for a pair of Texas-born players, forward Kris Tyrpak and defender Bobby Burling, but I think in the end it will be hard for Pareja and company to pass on 19-year-old Homegrown midfielder Marco “Marky” Delgado.

2. New York City FC – If Dallas leaves Kennedy alone, NYCFC is in the catbird seat. To be able to walk into MLS with an established goalkeeper who knows the league would be a boon for the expansion side. With Orlando City having traded for Tally Hall, the league would have two new teams with experienced keepers. The pick is Dan Kennedy.

3. Sporting Kansas City – They need goals, but Chivas USA only scored 29 so there aren’t exactly loads to go around. Given the injury problems that thrust Erik Palmer-Brown into the Starting XI this summer, Sporting goes for an instant boost on D. Burling is a possibility, but I think Andrew Jean-Baptiste moves to KC.

4. DC United – They know how to defend, so DC United settles for the hopes of production by adding winger Marvin Chavez

5. New England Revolution – Chivas USA only saw second-round midfielder Thomas McNamara for a limited time, but the man made an impact before suffering a major knee injury. Jay Heaps can bet on the New York native and see what happens.

After this point, total crapshoot:

source: Getty Images
Kaji

6. Montreal Impact – Caleb Calvert, HGP and F

7. Orlando City SC- Agustin Pelletieri, CDM

8. Colorado Rapids – Kris Tyrpak, F

9. San Jose Earthquakes – Bobby Burling, D

10. Real Salt Lake – Matt Dunn, M

11. Houston Dynamo – Ryan Finley, F

12. Portland Timbers – Tony Lochhead, D

13. Chicago Fire – Akira Kaji, D

14. Toronto FC – Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, D

15. Columbus Crew SC – Trevor Spangenberg, GK

16. LA Galaxy –Oswaldo Minda, M

17. Philadelphia Union – Martin Rivero, M

18. New York Red Bulls – Donny Toia, D

19. Seattle Sounders FC – Nathan Sturgis, M

20. Vancouver Whitecaps FC – Michael Nwiloh, D

 

Serie A roundup: Napoli falls to Parma in debut for Gattuso (video)

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Napoli’s last-minute loss to Parma in Gennaro Gattuso’s debut highlights Saturday’s Serie A action.

 [ MORE: Serie A scores, schedule ]

Napoli 1-2 Parma

Napoli remains in a dark place as Gennaro Gattuso debut with Gli Azzurri ended in a last-minute 2-1 loss to Parma.

The defeat marks eight consecutive games without a win in Serie A play for Napoli, who dismissed Carlo Ancelotti earlier this week despite punching a ticket in the last 16 of the Champions League after a win over Genk.

After their fifth loss of the season, Napoli are currently eighth on the table with 21 points, seven behind sixth-placed Atalanta and 17 behind league leaders Inter Milan.

 

 

In the third minute of stoppage time, Gervinho – experienced as anyone else in tightly-contested situations – received a simple pass from Dejan Kulusevski, carefully striking it into the back of the net inside the six-yard box. The 32-year-old Ivorian has five goals in Serie A this season, and Saturday’s was his most important yet. 

For Gattuso (and hopeful Napoli supporters), Saturday was the antithesis of dreamy start, but with time and a change of mentality the situation may change.

“I don’t believe in bad luck. Right now we’re not good mentally,” the 41-year-old manager said following the match. “The team is paying for the fact that it has not won (in the league) for 50 or more days.”

“The first 10 minutes also prove it,” he added. “It’s tough as are the whistles of the fans. There’s a lot of work to do.”

The home side recorded 33 shots throughout the night, but Parma proved to be more clinical, scoring at death and opening the scoresheet just four minutes in. In the 64th minute, Napoli were able to get one go their way, as Dreis Merten’s lofting cross with force was headed home by Arkadiusz Milik. 

Gattuso and his men will be tested once as they travel to Sassuolo in a weeks time, while Parma look to trim their four-point gap with Atalanta when they host Brescia.

Elsewhere in Serie A

Brescia 3-0 Lecce

Genoa 0-1 Sampdoria

Hertha’s under-16s stop playing after alleged racist abuse

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BERLIN (AP) Hertha Berlin’s under-16 team stopped playing a game at regional rival Auerbach after its players were allegedly subjected to racist abuse from their opponents on Saturday.

The Bundesliga club says in a statement on its website that “several players from our team were racially abused by their opposing players.”

Hertha officials informed the referee of the alleged abuse and decided to stop playing in the 68th minute while leading 2-0 “because we as Hertha BSC condemn racism and discrimination in every form,” the club said.

Hertha executive board member Paul Keuter called it “the only correct decision, not to continue with the game.”

On Twitter, the club said: “There are times when football doesn’t come first. Racism has no place in our society.”

Hertha under-23 player Jessic Ngankam said he was targeted with monkey chants and called an “ape” by an opposing player during his side’s fourth division game against Lokomotive Leipzig on Dec. 6.

“Insults are unfortunately an everyday occurrence in football, and I can put up with them. But racist abuse is a no-go,” the 19-year-old Ngankam told broadcaster MDR.

Both Hertha and Lokomotive condemned the alleged abuse.

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

Ciaran Fahey on Twitter: https://twitter.com/cfaheyAP

La Liga roundup: Sociedad hold leaders Barcelona to draw (video)

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A stunning draw from top-of-the-table Barcelona highlight La Liga’s Saturday action.

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Real Sociedad 2-2 Barcelona

If Real Madrid manages to walk away from Mestalla with three points, they’ll dethrone nemesis Barcelona and become clear-cut leaders of La Liga.

Just days before El Clasico itself, a rare 2-2 draw from Barcelona against hosts Real Sociedad is the reason behind Los Blancos’ prime opportunity.

 

Former Borussia Dortmund starlet Alexander Isak tapped in his fourth goal of the season in the 62nd minute, leveling the score for Sociedad and sending the home fans into a frenzy.

In true Barcelona fashion, Real Sociedad, ironically hit the ground running first. 

After earning a foul inside the box from a corner kick set piece, Reala captain Mikel Oyarzabal converted from the spot, putting Sociedad, who have exceeded expectations this season under first-year manager Imanol Alguacil, up against the defending champions. 

It wouldn’t take long before the visitors responded, however.

A familiar face and experienced goalscorer at Anoeta, it was the ideal scenario for Antoine Griezmann to shake off some pressure that has been a key talking point surrounding the Frenchman lately. Darting inside the box with only Alex Remiro to beat, No. 17 – like in the old days – carefully chipped the ball over Remiro and into the back of the net the ball wandered. 

If the second half indicated anything early on it was that it was going to be difficult for Barcelona to drop points on Saturday. Unselfish as ever before, Lionel Messi laid off the ball to an unmarked Luis Suarez, who his team up 2-1 four minutes into the second half.

A lack of control of possession and, most notably, an unstable defensive line, would end up costing Barcelona two points.

Next for Barcelona is the game of the season: a league bout against Real Madrid on Wednesday, while Real Sociedad travel to Becerril in the second round of Copa del Rey. 

Elsewhere in La Liga

Atletico Madrid 2-0 Osasuna

Granada 1-2 Levante

Atheltic Bilbao 0-0 Eibar

South Florida officials seeking more international soccer

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MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) More than two dozen political leaders in South Florida have written letters to the U.S. Soccer Federation’s board of directors, urging them to allow top-tier international matches to take place in the Miami region.

Relevent Sports, the soccer-promoting group owned by Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross, filed suit against the USSF earlier this year saying that the sport’s governing body in this country was helping to prevent them from hosting certain matches.

The letters were released Friday to media outlets, including The Associated Press.

The USSF did not respond to a request for comment.

Ross’ group and top Spanish league La Liga have been working for some time to bring a regular-season match to Hard Rock Stadium, the facility Ross owns and is the Dolphins’ home.

The politicians – ranging from city mayors, county mayors, county commissioners and one state Senator – all essentially said the same thing, that bringing major international soccer to South Florida only will help the region’s tourist-dependent economy.

“Doing so will demonstrate a genuine commitment to our communities and the growth of the game, which you, as the United States Soccer Federation, are charged with promoting,” wrote Dean Trantalis, the mayor of Fort Lauderdale. That’s the city where David Beckham’s new MLS team, Inter Miami, will begin play next March.