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|Real Salt Lake eases past Colorado, 5-1 (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 20, 2014, 4:38 am]
SANDY, Utah (AP) -- Joao Plata scored the first of Real Salt Lake's four goals in a 13-minute span in a 5-1 victory over the Colorado Rapids 5-1 on Friday night.
Sacramento's bid to win Major League Soccer franchise gets high marks (Reuters) [Yahoo! Sports: September 20, 2014, 12:56 am]
By Sharon Bernstein SACRAMENTO Calif. (Reuters) - Sacramento's dark-horse bid to secure a Major League Soccer franchise won praise from league officials on Friday, who promised to continue serious negotiations with boosters led by mayor and former basketball star Kevin Johnson. League officials touring the California capital city praised the site of a proposed downtown stadium and the success of the minor league Sacramento Republic FC, which is in the semi-finals at its level and has been selling out tickets since coming to town last spring. ...
FIFA ethics event puts WCup bid probe in spotlight (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 9:48 pm]
Corruption, secrecy, and a soccer world seeming awash with gifts of watches: there is no shortage of issues to discuss when FIFA decides to talk about ethics. An event that opened with FIFA President Sepp Blatter hailing the body's efforts to crack down on corruption was more notable for the rare insight it gave into an ethics probe that is key to the scandal-hit body's aim of repairing its damaged image. For the first time, the American prosecutor and German judge tasked with looking into claims that FIFA's executive committee acted corruptly in awarding the 2018 and 2022 World Cup to Russia and Qatar talked openly about the probe. They didn't reveal any investigative details - they would be kicked off the case for that - but raised some eyebrows by pushing back the expected deadline for verdicts and criticizing FIFA's secrecy rules that prevent them from disclosing more.
FC Dallas-Galaxy Preview (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 9:36 pm]
Landon Donovan is back for the stretch run for the Los Angeles Galaxy, and he believes the club's four remaining Western Conference matchups will go a long way toward determining its fate. The Galaxy can clinch a playoff spot as they try to extend their unbeaten streaks to eight games overall and 13 in a row at home Saturday night against FC Dallas. Donovan was out due to suspension when Los Angeles (14-5-9) drew 1-1 at San Jose last Sunday. The Galaxy are 5-0-2 in their last seven matches.
Rapids' Nick LaBrocca suspended 1 game for foul (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 9:27 pm]
NEW YORK (AP) -- Colorado Rapids midfielder Nick LaBrocca was suspended for one game and fined an undisclosed amount by MLS on Friday for a serious foul that endangered the safety of an opponent.
Earthquakes-Impact Preview (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 8:11 pm]
The Montreal Impact are on the verge of being eliminated from the postseason hunt, and the San Jose Earthquakes are well on their way to joining them with their longest winless streak in three years. The Earthquakes will try to end their eight-game stretch when they visit the league's worst team Saturday night. They could also get knocked out with a tie if both Columbus and Philadelphia do not lose or if two of the following three teams win: Columbus, Philadelphia and New York. The Impact are 0-2-1 in their three MLS games this month after winning two of their final three in August, and couldn't build on Calum Mallace's goal in the 13th minute in a 2-1 loss at New England last Saturday.
Revolution-Crew Preview (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 7:28 pm]
The New England Revolution are happy with their winning ways though they would like to not have to come from behind constantly. They'll look to post their first six-game win streak in over nine years Saturday night on the road and avenge an earlier defeat to the Columbus Crew, although star midfielder Jermaine Jones' status is in doubt. New England (13-12-3) has matched its longest win streak of the year though it has had to rally from a goal down in each of the past three contests, including last Saturday's 2-1 win over Montreal that capped a three-game homestand. "The starts have actually been very bright," coach Jay Heaps said.
Manchester United-Leicester City Preview (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 6:54 pm]
Manchester United face a newly promoted opponent for the third straight match as they visit Leicester City on Sunday afternoon. The vibrant United that tore apart Queens Park Rangers 4-0 at Old Trafford last weekend was in stark contrast to the side that drew 0-0 with Burnley in their first match of this three-game stretch. Now Louis van Gaal's resurgent United (1-2-1) hope to conclude their run against last season's second-tier sides with their second Premier League win of the season. Despite off-loading Danny Welbeck to Arsenal and Chicharito Hernandez to Real Madrid in the transfer window, the arrival of striker Radamel Falcao on loan from Monaco has created an intriguing selection headache for the Dutch manager.
Dynamo-Union Preview (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 6:36 pm]
While the Philadelphia Union's winning streak came to an end last weekend, they picked up a point to keep pace in the playoff hunt. Continuing their push could prove difficult against the Houston Dynamo, who have dominated the series of late. Philadelphia tries to avoid a fifth consecutive shutout against Houston as these Eastern Conference foes square off Saturday night at PPL Park. The Union (9-9-10) had outscored opponents 7-2 during a season-best three-game run in league action before playing to a 2-all draw against New York last Saturday.
United-Fire Preview (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 6:28 pm]
After adding just one point this month, D.C. United is getting close to losing the Eastern Conference lead.
Crystal Palace-Everton Preview (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 6:00 pm]
Roberto Martinez expects a difficult challenge Sunday at Goodison Park for Everton based on how his side fared against Crystal Palace last season. Everton are flying high after opening their Europa League campaign with Thursday's 4-1 win over German side Wolfsburg. The manager believes his club will be in for a more stern test this weekend against one of five remaining winless sides in Premier League play. Crystal Palace (0-2-2) have shown improvement with consecutive draws but more relevant to this matchup is how the Eagles drew 0-0 with the Toffees at Selhurst Park last season before a shock 3-2 win at Goodison on April 16.
Chelsea-Manchester City Preview (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 5:54 pm]
Jose Mourinho and Manuel Pellegrini insist Sunday's high-profile clash at the Etihad will not define the season for either Chelsea or Manchester City. Yet both managers are quite aware what grabbing the full three points could do for their respective sides as the early frontrunners face off against the reigning Premier League champions. The Blues (4-0-0) are off to a flying start with the maximum 12 points through their four matches, scoring 15 goals as Diego Costa has already given backlines across England a torrid time with a league-best seven while no other player has more than three. "Last weekend Arsenal and City got one point each, nobody got three.
Sounders-Red Bulls Preview (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 5:42 pm]
While the Supporters' Shield won't be awarded until the end of October, MLS' regular-season prize could take another step toward changing hands this weekend at Red Bull Arena. Open Cup, the Seattle Sounders will try to further progress toward the league's next trophy in Saturday night's visit to the Shield-holding New York Red Bulls. The Sounders (17-7-3) overcame a first-half deficit in Tuesday's Open Cup championship for a 3-1 overtime win in Philadelphia. Chad Barrett tied the match in the 47th minute, and Clint Dempsey and Obafemi Martins scored in extra time.
Whitecaps FC-Timbers Preview (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 5:20 pm]
Having split two earlier meetings, the Vancouver Whitecaps and Portland Timbers know Saturday's showdown in Portland could go a long way in determining who makes the playoffs and who goes home. With 37 points, Vancouver (8-7-13) is one ahead of Portland (8-8-12) for the fifth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference. "This is playoff soccer," Whitecaps midfielder Russell Teibert told the team's official website. We're one point ahead and we're going down to Portland to win." Vancouver is 1-5-4 all-time against the Timbers, with its only victory coming 4-3 in Portland on June 1.
FIFA faces more calls for transparency (Reuters) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 4:41 pm]
By Brian Homewood ZURICH (Reuters) - FIFA faced more calls for greater transparency on Friday when its ethics investigator joined the critics and complained of a "disconnect" with the public. Former United States attorney Michael Garcia, head of the ethics committee's investigatory chamber, said too little information was being given on cases such as the probe into the controversial bidding process for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups. ...
Celtic's Tonev charged with making racist remark (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 3:56 pm]
GLASGOW, Scotland (AP) -- The Scottish Football Association has charged on-loan Celtic winger Aleksandar Tonev with ''excessive misconduct'' for allegedly using racist language toward an Aberdeen player during a league match.
Platini criticizes FIFA over luxury watch probe (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 3:04 pm]
UEFA President Michel Platini is going to keep his luxury watch, even though FIFA wants him to give it back. Platini criticized FIFA for publicly rebuking football officials who accepted gifts at the World Cup, saying Friday he will donate about $27,000 to charity rather than return the watch given to him in Brazil. On Thursday, FIFA told officials they had until next month to return the Brazilian football confederation watch or face ethics proceedings for accepting a gift that had more than a ''symbolic or trivial value.'' But Platini, one of FIFA President Sepp Blatter's biggest critics, questioned why the governing body is only now making an issue out of the watches. ''I was very surprised by the FIFA press release.
Wembley to host Euro 2020 semifinals and final (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 2:27 pm]
Wembley Stadium will host the semifinals and final of the first continent-wide European Championship in 2020, ending a run of bidding failures by England. England, which failed in the quest to host the 2006 and 2018 World Cups, was given the final by UEFA on Friday after Germany withdrew Munich's bid just before the vote. ''I know the party side of London, the way the English welcome people,'' UEFA President Michel Platini said. ''Wembley will doubtless live up to the responsibility.'' England hosted Euro '96 with the final at the old Wembley.
Platini slams FIFA over luxury watches row (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 2:09 pm]
GENEVA (AP) -- UEFA President Michel Platini has criticized FIFA for publicly rebuking football executives who accepted luxury gifts at the World Cup, saying he will donate around $27,000 to charity rather than return a watch.
West Brom-Tottenham Hotspur Preview (The Associated Press) [Yahoo! Sports: September 19, 2014, 2:08 pm]
Less than a month ago, Mauricio Pochettino was being lauded for Tottenham Hotspur's memorable start to the season. Pochettino looks for Spurs to win for the first time in four matches by capitalizing on a meeting with struggling West Bromwich Albion at White Hart Lane on Sunday. Hired in May after an impressive 18-month stint at the helm of Southampton, Pochettino was expected to help Spurs (2-1-1) show improvement on last season's sixth-place finish. Things surely started superbly, with Tottenham outscoring opponents 10-1 while winning their first four matches across all competitions.