Americans Abroad preview: Guzan benched, Friedel could make farewell appearance


As many soccer leagues across Europe will finish their season at the end of this month, time remains for Americans playing overseas to make headlines and bolster their national team aspirations with headline-grabbing performances.

In England, the Premier League will bid farewell to one of the United States’ greats, current Tottenham back-up goalkeeper Brad Friedel. The 44-year-old announced his retirement just over a week ago, and manager Mauricio Pochettino said that one last appearance for the longtime player is possible when Spurs face Everton on Sunday.

Fellow goalkeepers Brad Guzan and Tim Howard will see their respective sides encounter PL competition for the final time this season. However, following his severe blunder against Manchester City, Guzan was benched and is now set to ride the bench in Aston Villa’s tilt against Burnley.

[RELATED: Survival Sunday–Hull City v. Manchester United preview]

Howard, on the other hand, knows that his job is safe in the near future after Everton boss Roberto Martinez made that sentiment known. The 2014-15 Premier League year hasn’t held great fortune for Howard and the Toffees, who sit in tenth place, back several spaces from the previous season’s top-five finish. The good news? Everton has won five of its last eight games, and Goodison Park will watch one last effort vs. Spurs.

Talking about a U.S. international in great form, AZ Alkmaar’s Aron Johnasson has scored four goals in his past four Dutch Eredivisie matches, including this spectacular long-distance strike from a May 10 contest and acrobatic bicycle kick. AZ’s season is over with a Europa League qualification in the books, and the window is open for Johansson to challenge Jozy Altidore on the U.S. national team.

Over to the Germany, Borussia Mönchengladbach’s Fabian Johnson has tallied two assists in four games and also witnessed his side qualify for the Champions League with a safe-bet third-place conclusion. The ultimate goal is to snag second place, though. The Foals need to beat FC Augsburg, and if all pans out well, VfL Wolfsburg will lose to FC Köln.


John Brooks (German Bundesliga) — Suspended, won’t play in Hertha BSC-Hoffenheim match on Saturday

Timothy Chandler (German Bundesliga) — Scored two weeks ago for Eintracht Frankfurt, face fourth-place Bayer Leverkusen

Geoff Cameron (Premier League) — Set to start again when Stoke faces Liverpool on Sunday

Coach Bob Bradley, Cole Grossman (Norwegian Tippeligaen) – Stabaek vs. Rosenborg

VAR allows Man Utd goal, overturns Mane as Liverpool trails at half

Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Marcus Rashford has put Manchester United ahead at Liverpool, and the Reds are furious that VAR didn’t reverse the marker.

The English striker was on the business end of a Daniel James cross, which came two moves after Victor Lindelof kicked Divock Origi as the Belgian lost possession with a sloppy touch.


Scott McTominay picked up the ball and sent James down the right flank. Virgil Van Dijk played off the crosser, and Joel Matip couldn’t clear the effort and it reached Rashford who beat Alisson Becker.

Origi was certainly caught by Lindelof, and no one would’ve blinked had Martin Atkinson ruled it a foul, so perhaps the poor touch is what cost the Belgian his whistle?

VAR again worked against Liverpool minutes later when a long ball over the top glanced off Sadio Mane’s hand before the Senegalese scored a goal. It had a little impact on the play, but the rules are the rules when they are bad ones.

Either way, the Red Devils relish the chance to deny Liverpool its chance at history. The visitors are one win from matching PL records for consecutive wins and away wins.

Tuanzebe injured in warm-ups, Rojo now in Manchester United XI

Photo by Matthew Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images
Leave a comment

Well then.

Manchester United’s announced XI has changed thanks to a presumed injury to center back Axel Tuanzebe.

Marcos Rojo will take the youngster’s place in a back three with Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof.

Liverpool and United kickoff from Old Trafford at 11:30 a.m. ET (Watch live at on NBCSN and online via

The 29-year-old Rojo has played four times this season, but just 30 minutes in the Premier League.

Phil Jones has been added to the bench.


Manchester United: De Gea, Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Rojo, Young, Fred, McTominay, Pereira, James, Rashford. Subs: Romero, Mata, Martial, Jones, Greenwood, Garner, Williams.

Liverpool: Alisson, Robertson, Van Dijk, Matip, Alexander-Arnold, Fabinho, Henderson, Wijnaldum, Mane, Origi, Firmino. Subs: Adrian, Lovren, Milner, Keita, Gomez, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Lallana.

Lukaku scores 2, celebrates with Conte as Inter Milan bounces back

Photo by Claudio Villa - Inter/Inter via Getty Images
Leave a comment

If this guy was still in red, Manchester United would have a lot more hope heading into today’s visit from Liverpool.

Romelu Lukaku scored his fourth and fifth Serie A goals of the season on Sunday as Inter Milan outlasted Sassuolo 4-3 at Stadio Citta del Tricolore.

[ MORE: Pulisic Watch Sargent scores ]

Lautaro Martinez also scored twice in the win, as Inter rebounded from its loss to Juventus and reclaimed second place. Inter sits a point back of The Old Lady.

Lukaku caused a bit of buzz online when he raced over to manager Antonio Conte following his second goal for a fiery embrace (It’s Conte. Fiery is his thing).

From Football-Italia:

“Conte and I are both team players, so when I score a goal, I want to celebrate with everyone. I am focused only on working and giving my best in every match.”

Inter is home to Borussia Dortmund on Wednesday in almost a must-win given its slow start to life in the Champions League.

Lukaku, who’s also scored six goals in his last four appearances for Belgium, already has a goal in a Milan Derby and a solid strike partner in Martinez.

He ranks near the top of Inter’s performance charts on WhoScored, chipping in on the defensive end as well.

Watch Live: Manchester United v. Liverpool

Photo by Tom Purslow/Manchester United via Getty Images
Leave a comment

Manchester United chases a notable home win over rivals Liverpool without Paul Pogba and David De Gea, as the visitors look to match a pair of Premier League records on Sunday at Old Trafford (Watch live at 11:30 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via


Liverpool can tie the standard for consecutive away Premier League wins (9) while also winning its 18th-straight league match.

There’s a place on the Manchester United bench for Anthony Martial, but there are three center backs in the forms of Harry Maguire, Axel Tuanzebe, and Victor Lindelof.

Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah is not ready for any sort of return.

David De Gea and Aaron Wan-Bissaka have passed fit for United, while Divock Origi starts with Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane for Liverpool.


Manchester United: De Gea, Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Tuanzebe, Young, Fred, McTominay, Pereira, James, Rashford. Subs: Romero, Mata, Martial, Rojo, Greenwood, Garner, Williams.

Liverpool: Alisson, Robertson, Van Dijk, Matip, Alexander-Arnold, Fabinho, Henderson, Wijnaldum, Mane, Origi, Firmino. Subs: Adrian, Lovren, Milner, Keita, Gomez, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Lallana.