Friday, March 27, 2015

2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying (CONCACAF): Curacao Take Series Opener With Montserrat

At Willemstad, Curacao:

Papito Merencia (8') and Felitciano Zschusschen (PK-39') delivered the goals as Curacao defeated visiting Montserrat 2-1 in Friday's opening match of a two-game series in the opening round of CONCACAF-regional qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Lyle Taylor scored in the 24th minute for the visitors.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

2018 FIFA World Cup Qualification (CONCACAF): Barbados (Who Oust US Virgin Islands) and Sugar Boyz Advance; Dominica Wins Series Opener

Three games were played on Thursday as the opening round of CONCACAF-regional qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup continued.

At Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands:

Raheim Sargent (4'), Jamal Chandler (25'), Mario Harte (76'), and Jabarry Chandler (90'+2) each scored a goal as Barbados more than overturned their series-opening defeat with a game-two 4-0 road demolition of the United States Virgin Islands and won their two-match series 4-1 on aggregate.  The Bajan Tridents will take on Aruba in the second qualifying round.

At Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands:

Harry Panayoitou delivered a hat trick (PK-33', 55', 60') while Josh Leader added a double (7', 30') as Saint Kitts and Nevis delivered a second 6-2 beatdown of the Turks and Caicos Islands in completing their two-game demolition 12-4 on aggregate.  El Salvador awaits the Sugar Boyz in the second qualifying round.

At Roseau, Dominica:

Randolph Peltier delivered the game-winning goal in the 81st minute as Dominica defeated the British Virgin Islands 3-2 in the opening contest of their two-game series.  Though the game was played in Dominica, this was designated a British Virgin Islands home match, due to incomplete work at the BVI's A.O. Shirley Recreation Ground.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying (CONCACAF): Bermuda Rack Up Series Opening Victory; Goose Eggs In Belize

Two games were played in the opening round of CONCACAF-regional qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup on Wednesday.

At Nassau, Bahamas:

Jusin Donawa scored twice (57', 70') as Bermuda demolished the Bahamas 5-0 on the road in the opening contest of their two-game series.

At Belmopan, Belize:

The Cayman Islands held hosts Belize to a 0-0 series-opening stalemate.


MLS Expansion: Now, It's The Twin Cities' Turn

Minnesota United FC is slated to begin MLS play in 2018.  The twin cities had two cracks at NASL soccer, the first, the ex-Denver Dynamos----the Minnesota Kicks----played six years at Bloomington's old Metropolitan Stadium (1976-81) alongside the Twins and Vikings, but went under after the 1981 season as the NASL was gradually deteriorating.  The second effort, the Minnesota Strikers, came up from Fort Lauderdale in 1984, perhaps with an eye on playing in the original MISL.  They were one of only two teams that were gearing up for the 1985 season when the original NASL went under.

Monday, March 23, 2015

2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying (CONCACAF): Easy Series-Opening Wins For Nicaragua, St Kitts and NevisAt

Two games were played on Monday as the opening round of CONCACAF-regional qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup continued.

At Managua, Nicaragua:

Luis Copete scored twice (24', 39') as part of a four-goal first half that carried Nicaragua to a 5-0 series-opening demolition of visiting Anguilla.

At Basseterre, St. Kitts:

Orlando Mitchum delivered a hat trick (45', 64', 89') as St. Kitts and Nevis belted visiting Turks and Caicos Islands 6-2 in the opening contest of their two-game series.

2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying (CONCACAF): US Virgin Islands Take Series Opener On Road

At Bridgetown, Barbados:

Jamie Browne scored the only goal of the match in the 16th minute on Sunday as the US Virgin Islands defeated Barbados 1-0 on the road in the opening match of a two-game series as CONCACAF-regional qualification for the 2018 FIFA World Cup commenced.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

MLS: Red Bulls Blank DCU Atlantic Cup Clash; Quakes Open Avaya Stadium With Victory

Two games were contested in Major League Soccer on Sunday.

At Harrison, New Jersey:

Bradley Wright-Phillips had a hand in both goals as the New York Red Bulls blanked visiting DC United 2-0 in an Atlantic Cup clush.  He scored his goal in the 25th minute and assisted on Lloyd Sam's tally in the 71st.

At San Jose, California:

In their first regular-season match at Avaya Stadium, the San Jose Earthquakes, thanks to goals from Abdul-Fatai Alashe (5') and Ty Harden (21'), held off the visiting Chicago Fire 2-1.

MLS STANDINGS:

EASTERN CONFERENCE:

1.   New York City FC (GP: 3; GD: +2; PTS: 5)
2.   New York Red Bulls (GP: 2; GD: +2; PTS: 4)
3.   Orlando City (GP: 3; GD: 0; PTS: 4)
4.   Columbus (GP: 2; GD: +1; PTS: 3)
5.   Toronto FC (GP: 2; GD: 0; PTS: 3)
6.   DC United (GP: 2; GD: -1; PTS: 3)
7.   Philadelphia (GP: 3; GD: -2; PTS: 2)
8.   Montreal (GP: 2; GD: -1; PTS: 1)
9.   New England (GP: 3; GD: -5; PTS: 1)
10. Chicago (GP: 3; GD: -4; PTS: 0)



WESTERN CONFERENCE:

1.   FC Dallas (GP: 3; GD: +5; PTS: 9)
2.   San Jose (GP: 3; GD: +2; PTS: 6)
3.   Vancouver (GP: 3; GD: 0; PTS: 6)
4.   Los Angeles (GP: 3; GD: +2; PTS: 5)
5.   Houston (GP: 3; GD: 0; PTS: 4)
6.   Seattle (GP: 2; GD: +2; PTS: 3)
7.   Portland (GP: 3; GD: 0; PTS: 3)
8.   Colorado (GP: 2; GD: 0; PTS: 2)
9.   Real Salt Lake (GP: 2; GD: 0; PTS: 2)
10. Kansas City (GP: 3; GD: -2; PTS: 2)




Saturday, March 21, 2015

MLS: Hoops, Caps Collect Wins On Four-Draw Saturday, Which Includes Three Scoreless Stalemates

Six games were played on Saturday in Major League Soccer.

At Foxborough, Massachusetts:

The ten-man Montreal Impact held the home-standing New England Revolution to a 0-0 stalemate.

At Commerce City, Colorado:

New York City gained a point on the road with a 0-0 deadlock against the Colorado Rapids.

At Chester, Pennsylvania (postponed from Friday due to snow):

In a foul-filled match, Tesho Akindale (49') and Ryan Hollingshead (59') delivered the goals as FC Dallas blanked the ten-man Philadelphia Union 2-0 on the road. 

At Orlando, Florida:

Octavio Rivera delivered the only goal of the match in the sixth minute of second-half stoppage time as the Vancouver Whitecaps handed Orlando City their first MLS defeat, 1-0 on the road.

At Kansas City, Kansas:

Sporting Kansas City and the visiting Portland Timbers battled to a 0-0 draw.

At Carson, Califorina:

Nathan Sturgis' equalizer in the 11th minute carried the Houston Dynamo to a 1-1 road draw with the Los Angeles Galaxy.  Robbie Keane scored for the defending champs in the third minute.  Recovering from his blunder against Orlando eight days earlier, Dynamo goalkeeper Tyler Deric made several key second-half saves to preserve the draw and gain a road point for the guests.

CAF Champions League: Kano Pillars No Match For Moghreb Tetouan In Series Opener

At Tetouan, Morocco:

In the lone Saturday CAF Champions League first-round contest, Moghreb Tetouan, with Mouhcine Iajour delivering a natural first-half hat trick (13', 26', 34') demolished visiting Kano Pillars 4-0 in the opening contest of their two-game series.

This match was postponed to Saturday due to the wounding of five Kano Pillars in a shooting earlier this month in Nigeria.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Copa Libertadores: Boca Juniors Clinch Round-of-16 Berth; Zamora Eliminated

Group-stage play in the Copa Libertadores continued on Thursday with four games.

GROUP THREE:

At Puerto Ordaz, Venezuela:

Leandro Damiao (10') and Marquinhos (82') delivered the goals as Cruzeiro blanked Mineros FC 2-0 on the road.

Group Three Standings:

1. Cruzeiro (GP: 3; GD: +2; PTS: 5)
2. Universitario (GP: 3; GD: +1; PTS: 5)
3. Huracan (GP: 3; GD: 0; PTS: 3)
4. Mineros FC (GP: 3; GD: -3; PTS: 1)



GROUP FIVE:

At Independencia, Chile:

Jason Silva's equalizer in the 65th minute enabled Palestino to salvage a 1-1 home draw with Montevideo Wanderers. Alexandre da Silva scored for the Uruguayan club in the 35th minute.  The draw locked up a berth in the knockout stage for Boca Juniors and eliminated Zamora FC from the tournament.

Group Five Standings:

1. x-Boca Juniors (GP: 4; GD: +12; PTS: 12)
2.    Montevideo Wanderers FC (GP: 4; GD: +1; PTS: 7)
3.    Club Deportivo Palestino (GP: 4; GD: -2; PTS: 4)
4. z-Zamora FC (GP: 4; GD: -11; PTS: 0)

x-Clinched berth in knockout stage

z-Eliminated from tournament



GROUP SIX:

At Buenos Aires:

Marcos Delgado's equalizer in the 89th minute lifted Juan Aurich to a 1-1 road draw with River Plate.  Gabriel Mercado scored for the hosts in the 25th minute.

Group Six Standings:

1. x-UANL Tigres (GP: 4; GD: +8; PTS: 10)
2.     Juan Aurich (GP: 4; GD: -1; PTS: 5)
3.     River Plate (GP: 4; GD: -2; PTS: 3)
4.     Club Deportivo San Jose (GP: 4; GD: -5; PTS: 3)

x-Clinched berth in knockout stage



GROUP SEVEN:

At Medellin, Colombia:

Brahian Aleman scored twice (46', 51') as the Barcelona Sporting Club knocked off Atletico Nacional 3-2 on the road.

Group Seven Standings:

1. Estudiantes de La Plata (GP: 4; GD: +3; PTS: 7)
2. Club Libertad (GP: 4; GD: +1; PTS: 7)
3. Atletico Nacional (GP: 4; GD: 0; PTS: 5)
4. Barcelona Sporting Club (GP: 4; GD: -4; PTS: 3)  

Europa League: Sevilla, Fiorentin, Zenit Advance To Quarterfinals; Dynamo Kiev Oust Toffees; No English Clubs Left In European Competition

The Europa League's Round of 16 concluded on Thursday with eight games.

At Khimki, Russia:

A 0-0 road deadlock with Dynamo Moscow in game two enabled Napoli to win their two-match series 3-1 on aggregate.

At Kiev, Ukraine

Andriy Yarmolenko (21'), Lukasz Teodorczyk (35'), Miguel Veloso (37'), Oleh Husyev (56'), and Vitorino Antunes (76') each scored a goal as Dynamo Kiev reversed their 2-1 road defeat of last week with a 5-2 game-two home domination of Everton and won their two-match series with the Toffees 6-4 on aggregate.  Everton's elimination means that for the first time since 1992-93 there will be no English clubs in the quarterfinal round of any European club tournament.


At Rome:

Gonzalo Rodriguez (PK-9'), Marcos Alonso (18'), and Jose Basanta (22') each scored a goal in the first half-hour as Fiorentina dominted AS Roma 3-0 on the road in game two and won their series with their Italian Serie A bretheren 4-1 on aggregate.

At Amsterdam, Netherlands:

Yevhen Konoplyanka scored the series-winning goal in the 97th minute as FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk, after dropping a 1-0 regulation decision in game two to hosts Ajax Amsterdam (squaring the series at 1-1 on aggregate), with the total aggregate score at 2-2 following overtime, advanced on away goals (this rule also applies to overtime).

At Turin, Italy:

Despite dropping a 1-0 game two road decision to Torino, Zenit Saint Petersburg won their series with the Italian club 2-1 on aggregate.

At Milan, Italy:

Daniel Caligiuri (24') and Nicklas Bendtner (89') provided the scoring as VfL Wolfsburg topped Inter Milan 2-1 on the road in game two and won their series 5-2 on aggregate.

At Seville, Spain:

Vicente Iborra (69') and Denis Suarez (83') each scored a goal as Sevilla defeated Villarreal 2-1 at home and took out the Yellow Submarine 5-2 on aggregate.

At Istanbul, Turkey:

Boli Bolingoli-Mbombo scored twice (80', 90') as Club Brugge defeated Besiktas 3-1 on the road in game two and ousted the Turkish club 5-2 on aggregate.