MLS Saturday roundup: Whitecaps break losing streak; D.C. United back on track

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Another weekend of Major League Soccer action will come to a close following two matches on Sunday: Seattle Sounders vs. the New York Red Bulls and New England Revolution vs. the LA Galaxy.

As far as the meetings on Saturday, a couple of them were notable for late goals that altered the results.

Below is a roundup of the individual contests.

Toronto FC 3-1 San Jose Earthquakes: No Jozy Altidore for the Reds? No problem. The striker is set to miss four-five weeks with a hamstring injury as of May 19, and in this match, Toronto saw Sebastian Giovinco contribute significantly to ease the former Sunderland forward’s absence. Snapshot here.

Vancouver Whitecaps 2-1 Real Salt Lake: This time around, the Vancouver Whitecaps showed their playoff-worthiness after losing two-straight matches, and Real Salt Lake wasn’t able to regain form following a mid-week loss at the hands of the LA Galaxy. Vancouver still has some sorting out to do in midfield, but the goals arrived when needed. In the 36th minute, Gershon Koffie, scoring in this 100th MLS game, struck a deep winding shot that soared into the back of the net past goalkeeper Nick Rimando–a magnificent conversion. Seven minutes later, RSL’s Javier Morales nailed a beautiful free kick that squeezed into the corner of the net. Cristian Techera’s determined follow-up on Octavio Rivero’s header in the 79th minute handed the Caps a win.

New York City FC 1-1 Houston Dynamo: NYCFC got behind their raucous home crowd and pressed forward for the late winner. But the Dynamo’s back line held firm and goalkeeper Tyler Deric provided the heroics to grab a point on road. Snapshot here.

[FOLLOW: All of PST’s MLS coverage | Standings | Stats | Schedule]

D.C. United 2-1 Philadelphia Union: United was directing its sights on three points due to a difficult three-game away stretch without a win, and came out triumphant against the Union, victorious in their previous two bouts.  D.C. extended their home unbeaten steak to 19, while Chris Rolfe and Davy Arnaud were two of several key men for the Black and Reds. Andrew Wenger fed Sebastian Le Toux for the close-range opening goal in the fifth minute, but D.C. stormed back, Chris Pontius and Chris Rolfe (on an 85th-minute PK from a Zach Pfeffer handball) burying the next two. D.C.’s dominant spell of possession (85 percent at one point) in the final ten minutes put an end to the Union’s aspirations for a draw.

Orlando City SC 2-2 Columbus Crew: Crew clearly got the better of Orlando City SC in 3-0 victory back in April. This tilt saw a reverse of what transpired then, as Crew went down 10 men on Michael Parkhurst’s first red card of his MLS career in the 16th minute. Kaka buried the penalty kick off the American’s handball, and the score was tied at 1-1 since Tony Tchani guided home a header early on in the 6th minute. Crew target man Kei Kamara did what he does best, rising above the rest to bang his header past goalie Tally Hall for the 2-1 lead sixteen minutes into the second half. But Orlando wouldn’t completely relinquish the golden opportunity afforded by the red, with Pedro Ribeiro zooming a long-distance effort late.

Chicago Fire 3-0 Montreal Impact: The Impact had their short run of favorable play and were not ready to compete with the Fire in this competition, who were winless in their past four games and hungry for three points. The red card to Montreal midfielder Marco Donadel (his second yellow) in the 37th minute didn’t help their cause. Chicago had already netted the first goal of the match in the 13th minute off Harry Shipp’s upper-90 finish; Jeff Larentowicz added a second on a penalty kick from Bakary Soumare’s hauling down of Fire midfielder David Accam in the box. Kennedy Igboananike, all alone against goalie Evan Busch in the 72nd minute, then tallied the third for his very first MLS goal.

Colorado Rapids 1-2 Portland Timbers: Talk about a wild ending. This game remained fairly steady throughout, and just before the 90 minute mark, the Rapids, unable to get many threatening attacks, drew the match level at 1-1. Then, Portland goes for gold and nabs the stoppage-time winner. Snapshot here.

Premier League social media wrap: Brighton, teqball, remembering Tiote

Premier League social media
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Premier League sides are fully back in the flow of training with scheduled matches coming within a fortnight.

[ STREAM: Every PL match live ]

So it’s no surprise that banter’s back, too.

That’s where we’ll start Friday, with Irish center back Shane Duffy making sure he’s keeping things light as Brighton and Hove Albion prepares to defend its Premier League place.

Duffy turned a sprinkler on his teammates at training, showing that, yes, your high school career has some things in common with Premier League footballers.

How about some skills as Manchester United gets ready for its return to the PL pitch?

Bruno Fernandes and Andreas Pereira tangled with Fred and Diogo Dalot in a match of Teqball.

You’ll have to watch to see who won.

There’s also a sad anniversary on this day.

It’s been three years since former Newcastle United wrecking ball Cheick Tiote passed away at age 30 after collapsing during a training session with Chinese side Beijing Enterprises, causing shock and grief around the Premier League.

His former teammates were remembering him on Friday, the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations winner was definitely beloved and will always be remembered for his incredible goal to cap off Newcastle’s 4-4 comeback draw with Arsenal.

We’ll start with Norwich City backstop Tim Krul, who spent time with Tiote at Newcastle.

Former Magpies wizard Yohan Cabaye pinned an old memorial to his Twitter wall.


Preview: Borussia Dortmund v. Hertha Berlin

Borussia Dortmund v. Hertha preview, how to watch
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Four Bundesliga teams are unbeaten in their last five matches and Hertha Berlin is the unlikeliest of the bunch.

They’ll tangle with Borussia Dortmund at the Westfalenstadion on Saturday in the latest challenge of the Bruno Labaddia era in Berlin.

[ BUNDESLIGA: Week 30 preview and predictions ]

Labbadia is Hertha’s third manager of the season and Hertha has played a scrappy brand of football that has punched and counter-punched under his tutelage. That doesn’t mean they’ve failed to find finish, as Liverpool loanee Marko Grujic and Brazilian youngster Matheus Cunha have been potent.

Borussia Dortmund is a bigger ask, though Hertha made RB Leipzig make mistakes in a 2-2 tie.

[ LIVE: Bundesliga scores, stats ]

Will it be able to get a result at the Westfalenstadion? Perhaps this is a bridge too far, because Dortmund’s shown an explosive offense and its defense has been strong far more often than not this season.

That said, Erling Haaland is just returning to fitness and has just one goal since the league’s restart from the coronavirus pause. Mats Hummels will miss with a yellow card suspension and Marco Reus still isn’t back.

Maybe American teen Giovanni Reyna will get prolonged run along with Jadon Sancho. We’ll see!

Borussia Dortmund v. Hertha Berlin, how to watch

  • TV Channels: FS2
  • Stream LiveVia Fox Soccer
  • Americans Abroad: Giovanni Reyna (Dortmund)
  • When: Saturday, June 6 – 12:30 p.m. ET: Dortmund v. Hertha

Sheffield United season restart preview

Sheffield United season restart preview
Photo by Bradley Collyer/PA Images via Getty Images)
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With the 2019-20 Premier League season soon to restart, let’s focus on all 20 clubs and see where they stand ahead of the final nine matches of the season.

Sheffield United is next.

[ MORE: Remaining PL schedule in full ]

Let’s take a closer look at all things Blades when it comes to the season restart.

Outlook: Sheffield United has welcomed itself to the Premier League and put its feet up on the big boys’ tables while asking what’s for dinner. Blades sit seventh and will hope to continue a fairytale which has them on the precipice of the Europa League. Their fixture list in monstrous, especially at Bramall Lane, but Wilder’s proven capable of outwitting even the smartest of bosses for long periods of time. A name to remember is Simon Moore. The backup keeper and starter from Blades’ League One days could become vital should Manchester United defy expectation and pull Dean Henderson home from his loan upon its June 30 expiry.

[ MORE: Ranking every Southampton player in 2019-20 ]

Tactical analysis: Chris Wilder has flummoxed many a Premier League manager with his creative use of defenders in attack. United typically uses Jack O’Connell, John Egan and Chris Basham as a back-3 with Enda Stevens and George Baldock as the two wingbacks. Those players have accounted for six of United’s 18 PL assists this season. For more on the tactics, Wilder laid things out in entertaining fashion for Arlo White late last month.

Possible XI (3-5-2) 

—– Henderson* —–

— Basham — O’Connell — Egan —

— Baldock — Fleck —  Berge —– Norwood — Stevens—

—– McBurnie —– Mousset —–

The challenge here is fitting January signing Berge into the mix, as fellow central midfielders John Fleck, Oliver Norwood, and John Lundstram have been instrumental in this amazing season. Lundstram seems the most likely to cede his spot if someone will, which really says something about Berge’s immense talent. David McGoldrick and Billy Sharp have provided a lot up top, so McBurnie and Mousset will see plenty of time on the bench. And the biggest question of all is Henderson, who’s on loan from top seven rival Manchester United.

[ MORE: The 2 Robbies assess Sheffield United’s chances ]

[ STREAM: Every PL match live ]

Remaining schedule
Home: Spurs, Wolves, Chelsea, Everton
Away: Newcastle, Manchester United, Burnley, Leicester City, Southampton

Predicted finish: The Blades will get the chance to defend their home turf from not one, not two, not three, but four would-be European rivals (It’s a little generous to include Everton, but the talent is there). Throw in Leicester and Manchesteer United away, and there is a huge bridge to cross for Wilder’s men to keep their incredible season on the path toward unprecedented heights. It’s not just about keeping Spurs and Arsenal in the rear view mirror, as Blades meet the next four teams above their seventh-place footing.

Petersen’s header leads Freiburg past 10-man Gladbach

Freiburg v. Borussia Monchengladbach recap
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Nils Petersen’s second half goal led Freiburg to a huge 1-0 win over 10-man Borussia Monchengladbach at the Schwarzwald-Stadion on Friday.

Freiburg keeps its Europa League hopes alive by moving onto 41 points, one behind sixth and seventh.

Gladbach fails in a bid to go third and remains fourth with 56 points, ahead of Bayer Leverkusen on goal differential.

A second yellow card to Plea was a double curse to Gladbach, who went down a man and now will miss a star forward against Bayern Munich.

[ LIVE: Bundesliga scores, stats ]

Bayer’s Ramy Bensebaini utilized a slick backheel turn to nutmeg an opponent and send in a cross that was put out for a corner kick.

Freiburg keeper Alexander Schwolow made a tight-angle save on Alassane Plea just after the quarter-hour mark.

Gladbach saw a chance chalked off after two dangerous bids resulted in an offside deflection into the goal.

Florian Neuhaus came close to scoring again when Lars Stindl headed the penultimate move of a fine team play into the six, but he popped it over the frame.

[ BUNDESLIGA: Week 30 preview and predictions ]

Gladbach’s second half again settled into the Freiburg final third, but it was a home sub that paid dividends at the other end.

Petersen improved his club record for goals when he nodded Vincenzo Grifo’s free kick home in the 59th.

Stindl wasn’t too far from equalizing with a 17-yard shot at the hour mark, but Plea’s second yellow card damaged Gladbach’s hopes of a comeback.