Victor Nogueira

MLS Snapshot: Philadelphia Union 3-0 Columbus Crew

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The game in 100 words (or less): Steve Clark was left out to dry, and then returned the favor to his teammates, as the home Union was happy to take both goals and all three points. The Crew, frankly, didn’t seem interested once they were down 2-0, symbolized well by the build-up to Seb Le Toux’s goal to make it 3-0. Philly has won three of four, the lone loss coming to DC over the weekend, and Jim Curtin’s Union is into sixth, within a point of struggling Columbus.

Oh yeah, and uh, Gregg?

Three moments that mattered

41′ — Sapong plays the role of Professor — Columbus’ back line decided to let Philadelphia make an AND1 Mixtape, as Maurice Edu found Carlos Maidana, and a four-way passing play was complete when CJ Sapong, who had just subbed on for the injured Fernando Aristeguieta, slid to tap the ball home. 1-0 Union. I believe they say, “Doop”.

45′ — Finlay’s near-halftime run ends inches from glory  — Ethan Finlay carried the ball down the right side, and his tight-angled shot skittered diagonally across the box before just missing the far post.

52′ — Clark makes monumental screw-up — But he’s been so good. Clark woofed a roll out right into the waiting path of Vincent Nogueira, who stayed cool, calm and collected in lofting a ball over the helpless Columbus back line. 2-0.

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Man of the match: Sebastien Le Toux, Philadelphia — Any number of Union members could’ve earned the honor, but Le Toux made a key pass on Sapong’s goal before sliding home a goal of his own.

LINEUPS

Philadelphia Union: Sylvestre, Williams, Edu, Marquez, Fabinho, Carroll, Nogueira (Pfeffer, 79′), Maidana, Le Toux, Wenger (Ayuk, 78′), Aristeguieta (Sapong, 37′)

Goal: Sapong (41′), Nogueira (52′), Le Toux (59′)

Columbus Crew: Clark, Barson, Pogatetz, Campbell, Francis (Jimenez, 75′), George, Saeid, Finlay (Speas, 65′), Meram, Higuain (Kamara, 65′), Schoenfeld

U.S. federation announces another strong National Soccer Hall of Fame nominee class

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Another tough round of voting is ahead as the final list of nominees was announced for the National Soccer Hall of Fame Class of 2014.

In its release today on the nominees, U.S. Soccer says voting will begin immediately in three categories: Player, Veteran Player and Builder. Voting continues through Feb. 7.

Hall of Fame voters – including coaches and officials from the pro game, U.S. Soccer coaches and officials, designated media members and Hall of Famers – can list up to 10 candidates on their ballot. For the Player category, athletes appearing on two-thirds (66.7 percent) of voter ballots are elected. Players not appearing on at least five percent of ballots will be subtracted from the ballot (pending availability for the Veterans ballot.)

It’s not easy to gain the needed percentage. Two years ago only four players were selected: Tony Meola, Claudio Reyna, Tony DiCicco and Desmond Armstrong. A year ago only two made the cut: Joe-Max Moore and Peter Vermes.

These really are tough choices. On this ballot there are guys who were first to important MLS scoring mileposts (Jason Kreis), guys that surely would have caught up with them but for career-ending injuries (Taylor Twellman) guys who accomplished so much despite unfortunate injuries (John O’Brien), plenty of women’s players who won multiple World Cups or Olympic golds (Kristine Lilly and Brianna Scurry just to name a couple), guys who scored huge World Cup goals (Clint Mathis, Brian McBride — pictured above), huge MLS international stars (Marco Etcheverry) … and the list goes on.

In fact, here’s the entire list:

2014 National Soccer Hall of Fame Player Ballot

  • Chris Armas
  • Raul Diaz Arce
  • Marco Etcheverry
  • Lorrie Fair
  • Robin Fraser
  • Chris Henderson
  • Zoran Karic
  • Chris Klein
  • Jason Kreis
  • Eddie Lewis
  • Kristine Lilly
  • Kristin Luckenbill
  • Shannon MacMillan
  • Kate Sobrero Markgraf
  • Clint Mathis
  • Brian McBride
  • Jaime Moreno
  • Victor Nogueira
  • John O’Brien
  • Ben Olsen
  • Cindy Parlow Cone
  • Steve Ralston
  • Ante Razov
  • Tiffany Roberts
  • Tony Sanneh
  • Briana Scurry
  • Taylor Twellman