Newcastle United 1-2 Southampton: Elia leads steady Saints to big road win

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Eljero Elia scored his first two Southampton goals, and the opportunistic Saints again climbed into third-place in the Premier League with a 2-1 road win over Newcastle United on Saturday.

Yoan Gouffran’s awkward goal was Newcastle’s only tally, as the Magpies out attempted Southampton and backed them down for most of the final 20 minutes but couldn’t find an equalizer.

They seemed to have a great chance when Jose Fonte blocked Emmanuel Riviere’s shot in the box with his arm, but referee Robert Madley somehow didn’t see it that way.

Saints move back atop Manchester United for third, and are five back of No. 2 Manchester City. Newcastle sit in 11th place with 27 points.

[ RELATED: Watch full match replays ]

Newcastle controlled the early goings but Fraser Forster and his Saints defenders stayed in responsible positions to limit the threat.

What was Tim Krul doing on Southampton’s first goal? Graziano Pelle slipped a through ball to Elia, who was closely marked and hit a shot from a tight angle that someone beat the Dutchman. It was Southampton’s first attempt at goal.

James Ward-Prowse hit a very dangerous free kick in the 25th minute, and Jose Fonte rose to head it just over the goal.

Then Gouffran found the equalizer when a mix-up between former Newcastle keeper Forster and his two center backs pushed a clearing attempt off the Newcastle attacker and into the Southampton goal.

Ayoze Perez nearly scored a stunner on a 40-yard ping from Remy Cabella, but his half-volley spun just past the post from across the six.

[ RELATED: Latest Premier League standings ]

The second half saw a few chances for each side in the first 15 minutes. And right after Gouffran headed a Massadio Haidara cross wide, Southampton countered with Elia’s second.

Shane Long nodded the ball over the top of the midfield, and Elia’s shot deflected off Daryl Janmaat and past Krul to make it 2-1.

Newcastle kept pressing for an equalizer, and missed several big chances including a horribly-missed free header from Paul Dummett that had pundits and coaches alike wondering what the player was trying to accomplish.

Pelle flashed a header off the crossbar, just missing a chance to put the game to bed in the 78th minute. Cabella whiffed on an open look in the six during stoppage time.

That’s when controversy struck, as Madley didn’t see Fonte block a shot — from 10 yards away — with his forearm.


Newcastle United: Krul; Janmaat, Coloccini, Dummett (Williamson, 80′), Haidara; Sissoko, Anita (Riviere, 69′), Colback; Cabella, Perez, Gouffran (Ameobi, 69′)

Goal: Gouffran (30′)

Southampton: Forster, Clyne, Fonte, Gardos, Bertrand, Reed, S. Davis, Ward-Prowse (Cork, 60′), Tadić (Long, 60′), Elia (Targett, 82′), Pellè

Goals: Elia (14′, 62′)

Zlatan Ibrahimovic says goodbye to the LA Galaxy

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Zlatan Ibrahimovic has bid adieu to Major League Soccer, thanking the LA Galaxy for “making me feel alive again.”

The Swedish superstar averaged nearly a goal per game with the Galaxy, and was rumored to be in line for another two years at the club.

[ MORE: Columbus acquires Nagbe ]

Perhaps those reports, and maybe AC Milan’s struggles to score goals, have made more suitors come forward. Time will tell.

The Galaxy said the decision was a “mutual parting of ways” and thanked the player for his work both on and off the pitch.


“We would like to thank Zlatan for his contributions to the LA Galaxy and Major League Soccer,” said LA Galaxy President Chris Klein. “Since his arrival in 2018, Zlatan has positively influenced the sport of soccer in Los Angeles. We are grateful for his work ethic and passion. We thank Zlatan for his professionalism and immeasurable impact on the Los Angeles community and the soccer community in North America as a whole.”

Zlatan’s full thoughts, below, were a bit more Zlatanny.

Klein will have his hands full in replacing Ibrahimovic, who scored 52 times in 53 matches, but the Galaxy have always managed to bring in big names.

Getting a star playmaker is even more important as El Trafico rivals LAFC have rewritten the MLS record book and snared plenty of attention in California and across the league.

Columbus acquires Nagbe from Atlanta for $1M in allocation

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Darlington Nagbe is headed for a reunion with old boss Caleb Porter.

Columbus has sent over $1 million in allocation money to Atlanta United in order to claim the influential midfielder.

[ MORE: Top 25 players in USMNT pool ]

Porter coached Nagbe at the University of Akron and the Portland Timbers, and has 25 USMNT caps but has turned down Gregg Berhalter’s requests for service.

Nagbe made 46 appearances across all competitions for the Five Stripes this season, scoring twice with five assists. He has 313 matches played between Portland and Atlanta.


“Darlington Nagbe is a proven winner and the type of player who can be a difference-maker in our team,” Crew SC president and GM Tim Bezbatchenko said in a statement. “In addition to his skill set, we believe that Darlington is someone whose character and values fit well within our organization. As we stated heading into this offseason, we continue to look both domestically and internationally for players that will make our team better, and we believe Darlington is an important part of those efforts.”

It’s a bold statement from Columbus, who had a reputation for getting the most of its talent under Berhalter but faded under Porter after a hot start. The Crew began 2019 with a 4-1-1 record but lost 13 of its next 15 matches.

Of course, being MLS, the Crew then only lost 2 of their final 13 matches. Shoulder shrug emoji.

NYCFC teen agrees move to Borussia Monchengladbach

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New York City FC’s impressive academy has earned one of the bigger transfer market payoffs in MLS Homegrown history, and will join the current Bundesliga leaders after next season.

Joe Scally, 16, is headed to Borussia Monchengladbach on a $2 million transfer with a sell-on clause, and will spend the 2020 MLS season with his boyhood club. Scally has played in the Open Cup, but has not debuted in an MLS match.

[ MORE: Top 25 players in USMNT pool ]

The $2 million figure is on the edge of Top 30 for departing MLS players, according to Transfermarkt, just behind Cyle Larin’s move from Orlando City to Besiktas.

Scally appeared 11 times for the U.S. U-17 national team, going 90 minutes in all three matches and assisting on the lone American goal at the World Cup in Brazil.


“Joe Scally is a top American talent who we have been following for a long time. We see a lot of potential in Joe and we are looking forward to him joining up with us in January 2021. Until then, we will work together with New York City FC to prepare him for his move to Germany,” said Borussia’s sporting director, Max Eberl.

Not sure just how long they could’ve been following a 16-year-old, but we digress.

Scally will join U-17 teammates Giovanni Reyna (Borussia Dortmund) and Maximilian Dietz (Freiburg) on the books at a Bundesliga club. Recent U-17 call-ups Pablo Soares (Gladbach) and Noah Jones (RB Leipzig) are also with clubs in Germany’s top flight.

Last month, NYCFC sporting director Claudio Reyna told me that Scally was the perfect example of a young player trusting a club’s preference of changing his position.

“The perfect example is Joe Scally on the U-17 World Cup team. He came to us from a club in Long Island as an athletic box-to-box midfielder. He was very strong, but we saw him as an outside back. The lesson that we now we share that with our players, don’t get upset if you move to a position, but Joe Scally understood, never complained, he played wherever he was told to do, and now he’s a right back now, 16 years old going to the World Cup after being in our academy for two and a half years.”

Looks like it’s worked out.

Spanish court to decide fate of Spanish league game in USA

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MADRID (AP) A Spanish court will decide whether the Spanish league will be allowed to play the Villarreal-Atletico Madrid game in the United States next month.

[ MORE: La Liga scores, schedule

A court hearing is scheduled for Thursday in Madrid to hear arguments from the league and the Spanish soccer federation, which is against taking the regular-season match abroad.

The league has called for an injunction to force the federation to give its approval. It accuses the local soccer body of unfair competition.

The league also needs the approval of UEFA and American soccer bodies to be able to play the match, which is scheduled for Dec. 6 in Miami.

The commercial court hearing the case is expected to issue a ruling within the next few days.

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