The game in 100 words (or less): Stock up — Atlanta United. The expansion side looked favorites to qualify for the playoffs before Sunday’s 3-0 drubbing of FC Dallas, but following that lopsided victory in their first-ever game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Tata Martino’s side looks destined to climb the Eastern Conference standings over the final two months of the regular season. With three (or four) games in hand on just about everyone above them, and seven of their final nine games to be played at home, third place is very much in play. Stock way, way, way down — FC Dallas. Eight games without a win (five losses), FCD have slipped all the way to seventh in the Western Conference. Oscar Pareja’s side isn’t scoring goal, but more importantly they’re conceding a boatload (19-7 combined score during that eight-game skid). Fortunately for FCD, there aren’t
five four three good teams in the West, let alone the six it would require for them to miss the playoffs.
[ MORE: MLS Power Rankings — Week 26 | Weekend preview ]
Three moments that mattered
14′ — Gonzalez Pirez taps it home for a 1-0 lead — You might have been hoping for a more memorable first goal in stadium history, but they all count the same in the end.
26′ — Hedges clears Martinez’s shot off the line — Martinez had beaten Jesse Gonzalez, but Matt Hedges never gave up on the play and arrived in the nick of time to keep the deficit at one goal. At the time, it seemed a potentially game-changing event. Alas…
46′ — Martinez makes it 2-0 after 27 seconds — Walker Zimmerman committed an indefensible turnover in the midfield, which is the last thing you want to do against Atlanta. Watch how quickly (six seconds from center circle to ball-in-net) they transition from pressing to attacking. (That’s 11 assists on the season — second in this game — for 23-year-old Miguel Almiron.)
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Man of the match: Miguel Almiron
Goalscorers: Gonzalez Pirez (14′), Martinez (46′), Garza (68′)
Maybe Zinedine Zidane ought to rethink his stance on Gareth Bale?
Of course it’s just preseason, but the on-the-market Real Match forward subbed into Tuesday’s match in Maryland on Tuesday and spearheaded a comeback 2-2 draw against Arsenal.
Real won in penalties, as all International Champions Cup matches must have a winner.
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Real was down a man after 10 minutes when Nacho Fernandez handled a ball on the goal line, and Arsenal also went down a man when Sokratis Papastathopoulos saw his second yellow of the contest in the 40th minute.
Alexandre Lacazette converted a penalty, then set-up Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang for a goal 14 minutes later as the Gunners handled their business early.
The chemistry between two remains very real.
Real started new boys Eden Hazard, Ferland Mendy, and Luka Jovic in addition to Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, Karim Benzema, and Sergio Ramos.
Bale came in for Hazard at halftime and poked a 57th minute rebound home and Marcelo set up Marco Asensio two minutes later to complete the comeback.
Asensio, sadly, would only last a few more minutes, needing to be stretchered off with injury.
Five first legs of the UEFA Champions League’s second qualifying round are in the books, including a thrilling back-and-forth with a show-stopping stoppage time winner.
[ MORE: Rodgers talks down Maguire sale ]
PSV Eindhoven 3-2 FC Basel
Bruma scored a debut opener for the Dutch hosts, who fell behind 2-1 in the 79th minute before Sam Lammers and Donyell Malen struck in the 89th minute and second minute of stoppage, respectively, to put PSV ahead.
Basel will be okay taken two away goals home via Albian Aljeti and Omar Alderete.
Lammers came in for Mexican star Hirving Lozano in the 79th minute to score the leveler within 10 minutes before Malen, who went the full 90, kept his focus to deliver this clever winner.
The New Saints 0-2 Copenhagen
Pieros Sotiriou and Robert Skov scored on either side of halftime to give the Danish powers a healthy advantage heading into the second leg.
FK Sutjeska 0-1 APOEL Nicosia
Saburtalo 0-2 Dinamo Zagreb
Viktoria Plzen 0-0 Olympiacos
BATE Borisov v. Rosenborg — 1 p.m. ET
Ferencvaros v. Valletta — 2 p.m. ET
CFR Cluj v. Maccabi Tel-Aviv — 2 p.m. ET
Maribor v. AIK — 2:15 p.m. ET
Red Star Belgrade v. HJK Helsinki — 2:45 p.m. ET
Dundalk v. Qarabag — 2:45 p.m. ET
Celtic v. Nomme Kalju — 2:45 p.m. ET
Those tired of seeing Harry Maguire‘s name in the headlines, hoping his transfer saga had concluded with weekend reports that Manchester United agreed to a fee with Leicester City, well, they are going to be sorely disappointed.
[ MORE: Who is Newcastle’s new $50M forward? ]
Leicester City boss Brendan Rodgers credited Maguire for his professionalism — the center back scored in a friendly win on Tuesday — and said that the club’s vice chairman Aiyawatt “Top” Srivaddhanaprabha has not received a fitting bid for the 26 year old’s services.
From The Leicester Mercury:
“There’s no big pressure to sell any player. If a player does leave Leicester City, then the player would need to be met because we have a top-level player, coveted by top-level clubs and I respect that,” Rodgers said. “Harry is on a long contract here and there’s been no valuation or near to that which would make Top have a look.”
Look, we’ve still got a few weeks until the close of the window, and every supporter has a target they want their club to acquire and some have some assets they hope stay in the same shirt at the deadline.
The Maguire story is getting a bit tedious now. He wants to go to Manchester United, but Rodgers is happy to keep him at Leicester. Maguire’s not the player who will quit on the club if he’s not sold, and Leicester’s hope of landing a replacement will dip as the deadline draws nearer and clubs like Burnley (James Tarkowski) realize their replacements options have been lessened by the wait.
Vincent Janssen‘s less-than-ideal tenure with Tottenham Hotspur has come to its end, and he’s moving his way to this side of the Atlantic.
Liga MX side Monterrey has agreed to buy Janssen, Spurs announced Tuesday. The deal is for a reported $8 million.
[ MORE: Rich new deal for Hudson-Odoi ]
The Dutchman turned 25 this summer. He played just 42 times for Spurs after arriving from AZ Alkmaar for around $25 million in 2016, scoring six times, but did manage five goals and four assists in a half-year loan to Fenerbahce in 2017-18.
Janssen saw his time with the Netherlands national team peter out during his tenure at Spurs. After a red-hot start, he has not been capped since 2017. Janssen has seven goals in 17 caps.
His time at Spurs cannot be labeled as anything but a gigantic bust, but Janssen is still pretty young and has a chance to recapture his career momentum.
And he looks pretty happy about it.