Christian Ramirez showed Minnesota United FC exactly what it is missing.
Back home in Southern California, Ramirez scored twice in his first start for Los Angeles FC as the expansion side comfortably held on to a 2-0 win over Real Salt Lake in mid-week MLS action. It was his first MLS goals since he scored a brace against LAFC four weeks ago.
Once LAFC heard Ramirez was on the market, Bob Bradley and co. quickly snapped him up, and he is already paying dividends.
Playing as a lone striker, Ramirez found himself between two RSL defenders as LAFC took control of the ball off a turnover. Carlos Vela cut inside and delivered a perfect pass to Ramirez, who made a diagonal run away from the nearest defender and then back to the ball. All Ramirez needed was to loop the ball over Nick Rimando’s head in goal to give his side an early lead.
When someone is in good form, the ball seems to just find its way to you, and that’s exactly what happened for Ramirez’s second. Waiting at the far post, Ramirez side-stepped a couple of times to his left before slotting home easily. It showcased solid awareness and anticipation for the 27-year-old striker, who could still have a future with the U.S. Men’s National Team, especially with September friendlies coming up.
Ramirez has always seemed like he was destined to play on a bigger platform, and with LAFC’s impressive first year and numerous placements on national television, Ramirez may finally be getting the respect he’s due.
The UEFA Champions League group stage is back for the 2018-19 season, with some early kick offs (12:55 p.m. ET) in Group B serving up mouthwatering clashes.
It is okay to drool over the UCL games instead of your lunch this Tuesday. Honest.
[ LIVE: Champions League scores ]
Tottenham Hotspur head to the Giuseppe Meazza Stadium to take on Inter Milan as Mauricio Pochettino has raised some eyebrows with his squad selection following back-to-back defeats in the Premier League. Inter have had a tough start in Serie A, winning just once and losing twice (against Sassuolo and Parma) in their opening four games, but the likes of Ivan Perisic and Mauro Icardi start in attack as they look to inflict more misery on Spurs.
Elsewhere in Group B, Barcelona host reigning Dutch champs PSV Eindhoven at the Nou Camp with Lionel Messi and Co. starting off as one of the favorites to lift the trophy in Madrid next May. PSV and Mexico star Hirving Lozano will be seen as a huge threat to Barca, as the Dutch giants aim for an upset.
Click on the link above to follow all the action live, while we will keep you up to date with all of the UCL across Europe right here at Pro Soccer Talk.
While here are the starting lineups for all four teams.
Inter Milan v Tottenham
Barcelona v PSV
LIMA, Peru (AP) A Peruvian soccer league match resumed on Monday after being suspended a day earlier because of fighting between fans of the same team.
The country’s soccer association said the last 25 minutes of the match between Alianza Lima and Sporting Cristal would be played behind closed doors.
Sporting Cristal was leading 2-1 Sunday when the match was suspended. Four people were wounded by gunshots outside the stadium during the match.
Peruvian Interior Minister Mauro Medina says the incident happened after rival groups of Alianza Lima fans clashed with each other. Police used tear gas to stop the fight.
More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/tag/apf-Soccer and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports
Premier League player Power Rankings are back after a frantic Week 5 of the 2018-19 season.
[ MORE: Full Power Rankings archive ]
With a bevvy of fine individual displays after the international break, we have plenty of top talents to choose from.
Remember: this is a list of the top 20 performing players right now in the Premier League and based on them actually playing in the previous Matchweek. If they didn’t play due to injury or suspension, they aren’t going to make this list. Simple.
Let us know in the comments section below if you agree with the selections.
- Eden Hazard (Chelsea) – Even
- Virgil Van Dijk (Liverpool – New entry
- Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace) – New entry
- Ryan Fraser (Bournemouth) – New entry
- Marko Arnautovic (West Ham) – New entry
- Sadio Mane (Liverpool) – Down 4
- Romelu Lukaku (Man United) – Down 4
- Jorginho (Chelsea) – Down 2
- Roberto Firmino (Liverpool) – New entry
- Raul Jimenez (Wolves) – Up 5
- N'Golo Kante (Chelsea) – New entry
- Ruben Neves (Wolves) – Even
- Raheem Sterling (Man City) – Even
- James Milner (Liverpool) – New entry
- Glenn Murray (Brighton) – Up 4
- Mesut Ozil (Arsenal) – New entry
- Willian (Chelsea) – New entry
- David De Gea (Man United ) – New entry
- Josh King (Bournemouth) – New entry
- Andriy Yarmolenko (West Ham) – New entry
It’s not about how much you spend, it’s about what you spend it on, right?
Well, sort of.
[ STREAM: Watch every PL match live ]
How much have the top clubs on the planet spent to assemble their superstar squads? In short, a ton. But the deeper analysis shows a clear trend: Premier League clubs are dominating the money spent in the transfer market to assemble their rosters.
The guys over at the International Centre for Sports Studies – CIES Football Observatory, have calculated the biggest spenders on the planet in terms of purchasing their current squads, and eight of the top 20 are from the PL with seven of the top 11 from England’s top-flight.
Take a look at the list below as four of the top six clubs come from England.
Manchester City at the top of the tree having spent $1.14 billion to assemble their current squad, PSG are in second with a spend of $920 million, while Manchester United sit in third after spending $918 million. Liverpool after fourth after dishing out $823 million to put together their current roster, Barcelona have spent $807 million and Chelsea sit sixth after spending $786 million.
Focusing on the Premier League specifically, you can see how much each of the current 20 teams have spent to assemble their squads.
Biggest takeaways: Southampton and West Ham should be doing a lot better, while Bournemouth, Watford and Wolves are punching well above their weight.