Rose Lavelle’s early goal was enough for the United States women’s national team to seal its eighth CONCACAF Women’s Championship with a 2-0 win over Canada in Texas on Wednesday.
Alex Morgan scored an offside goal in stoppage time, a deserved marker despite the captain’s transgression. The dominant striker has 17 of her 97 national team goals in 2018.
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Both sides had already clinched berths in this summer’s World Cup in France, while Jamaica earned a spot via a third place match win over Panama earlier Wednesday.
The USWNT is 15W-2D in 2018 and in fine form heading into a World Cup year. The last loss came in the 2017 Tournament of Nations.
The game was vicious, with Tobin Heath the target for a number of hard Canadian fouls and Megan Rapinoe responding on behalf of the Americans.
“Obviously, we hate Canada and they hate us,” Rapinoe said after the game on Fox Soccer. “It was very apparent tonight.”
Lavelle sent a second minute loose ball just past the reach of Canadian goalkeeper Stephanie Labbe.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic could be a one-season wonder in Major League Soccer.
After a spectacular 22-goal, 10-assist campaign for the LA Galaxy, Gazzetta Dello Sport reports that Ibrahimovic is waiting for the phone to ring from AC Milan sporting director Leonardo, with a potential six-month deal in Milan on the table. Ibrahimovic and Leonardo have history – Leonardo was at Paris Saint-Germain when Ibrahimovic joined…from AC Milan, where Ibrahimovic played for two seasons, from 2010 through 2012.
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The 37-year-old striker is now 18 months removed from tearing the ACL in his right knee and showed few injury worries during his time with the Galaxy, where he started in 24 or 27 matches after joining in May. The report in Italy claims that Zlatan could earn upwards of $2.3 million for his six-month stint at Milan, which is more than he earned in base salary in one season in the U.S.
If this is the end of Zlatan’s time in MLS, he leaves having proven that he took the league seriously but also how embarrassingly bad the LA Galaxy’s defense was in 2018. There’s just no way that a team with 22 goals from Ibrahimovic should miss the playoffs.
The big Swede joins the likes of Didier Drogba and Wayne Rooney as recent European imports who had an instant impact in MLS. However, Ibrahimovic won’t be remembered alongside players such as David Beckham, Robbie Keane, Thierry Henry and David Villa, all of whom had huge long-term impacts in MLS and for their clubs.
Current UEFA general secretary Aleksander Ceferin is making a robust statement about his intentions to hold teams accountable under Financial Fair Play.
In the wake of reports from Football Leaks, published through Der Spiegel, alleging that both Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain had overvalued sponsorships to get around FFP rules, Ceferin told the BBC that the same type of corporate actions may not continue under his watch.
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“I don’t want to speak about Man City or PSG but for any club the rules have to be strong and clear,” Ceferin said. “We will act by the book, by the regulations. We know that we have to modernize. We know we have to check the rules and regulations all the time. We know that the situation in the football market is changing all the time. So that’s also part of our thinking for the future – do we have to do something about the regulations to be more robust? Yes.”
The new Football Leaks allegations aren’t exactly breaking news. UEFA ruled in 2014 that Man City had broken FFP rules, eventually settling with the club for around $63 million in today’s dollars, the same price Man City soon paid Liverpool for Raheem Sterling. The settlement helped Man City avoid being barred from the UEFA Champions League as well as help avoid UEFA losing key sponsorships and advertising revenue with one of the big clubs out of the spotlight.
FFP is a double-edged sword for UEFA. It was instituted by former UEFA president Michel Platini as a way to curb overspending and keep clubs from spending so much they became insolvent – look at Rangers or Valencia, for example. However, the way the rules were implemented, it almost forced the status quo to remain the same, just as billionaires from the Middle East and Asia were prepared to pump billions into their clubs, without having to worry about debts.
In order for PSG and Man City to become giants, the clubs needed to invest massively, and while both teams may have broken FFP rules, if they’re operating within their means, it should be allowed. Ceferin’s statement is bold, but it’s one that he’ll have to back up with action if a big club breaks FFP rules again. Is UEFA willing to jeopardize advertising revenue to keep the likes of Man City, or Barcelona or PSG out? We’ll see.
LISBON, Portugal (AP) A Portuguese official says Spain has made no approach about the possibility of presenting a three-way bid to host the 2030 World Cup with Morocco.
Education Minister Tiago Brandao Rodrigues, who oversees sports, says he has “no formal knowledge of any official announcement about a three-way bid.”
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He also says he believes FIFA does not allow joint bids from separate confederations – in this case, UEFA and the Confederation of African Football.
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez supposedly conveyed the bid offer to Moroccan counterpart Saad Eddine El Othmani during a brief visit to the north African country.
Bids to host the 2030 World Cup are being considered by countries in South America and England.
PARIS (AP) The Paris prosecutors’ office has opened an investigation into alleged discrimination by Paris Saint-Germain following a complaint by France’s League of Human Rights, which claims that club scouts illegally profiled potential recruits by their origin.
The investigation includes the supposed collection of personal information in a fraudulent, disloyal or illegal way and conserving personal information which “directly or indirectly” reveals racial or ethnic origins.
The action came three days after PSG said an internal investigation had found “no proven case of discrimination.”
PSG has acknowledged that forms with “illegal content were used between 2013 and 2018.” However, it declined responsibility for implementing the policy.