02 March 10:38 am

It's the morning of the opening day of the 2013 MLS season. I'm sitting at a funky cafe called Local 61 in Brooklyn (it's exactly what you imagine it would be), killing time before the Philadelphia Union and Sporting KC kick off to get things going.

Until that first kick, much of the soccer world's mindshare will be occupied with the Clasico between Real Madrid and Barcelona. Despite my MLS myopia at times, my own focus this trained on the Bernabeu this morning. If you love soccer, you better be watching.

It all got me thinking: Who from the many stars on the two squads would I most like to see in MLS?

The obvious choice is Barcelona's Lionel Messi. After all, he's the reigning World Footballer of the Year, three times over, and the most creative, devastating weapon of his generation.

But many others would say Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo, who is like a growling NASCAR car compared to Messi's Formula 1 machine. 

Still others would go for Xavi, the diminutive maestro who conducts the Barca midfield like Leonard Bernstein putting an orchestra through Copland's Appalachain Spring.

There's also Andres Iniesta, who quietly goes about the business of scoring and setting up goals for the Blaugrana, and with nary a peep; Kaka, the experienced, still-graceful artist who can turn a game for Madrid when given the opportunity; and Karim Benzema, who just gets better with each year up front at the Bernabeu. Not to mention Pedro and Mesut Ozil and... well, you get the drift: There are a lot of big stars on the field today.

For me, it's Real Madrid's Gonzalo Higuain. He's done nothing but score goals his entire career. His effectiveness is not tied to speed or overwhelming skill. He's just one of those guys, like Carlos Ruiz or Chris Wondolowski, who know how to be in the right place at the right time to stab home a goal. I'd definitely pay money every week to watch him play in MLS.

And no, I wouldn't want him playing alongside his brother in Columbus.



01 March 1:15 pm

This unplugged musical tribute to Kei Kamara, currently on loan at EPL side Norwich City from Sporting KC, and his "heart-shaped hands" goal celebration isn't going to get a favorable review in the latest issue of NME, but you've got to applaud the guy's gumption to sing it loud and proud on BBC Radio Norfolk's McVeigh and Butler show. And the audience participation. And the jersey.

CLICK HERE to watch the video.

20 February 11:32 pm

Landon Donovan has a history of insightful, personal interviews. He just hasn't given very many of them lately.

That seems to have changed on Wednesday night, as the US national team and LA Galaxy legend answered questions in public for the first time since helping lead his team to the 2012 MLS Cup. Donovan appeared at a Q&A session titled "The Competitive Edge" on the campus of the University of Southern California.

One promising young scribe proceded to live tweet the event. We can't vouch for the veracity of his transcription, during which Donovan talks about everything from his relationship with his dad to that time he almost quit soccer in 2006 (which, from memory, was right before kickoff vs. Ghana), but I guarantee you we'll all be talking about this out-of-the-blue appearance by LD for the next 48 hours:

Here's the best part, if you're a US fan:

And here's the part that's Landon being Landon to, like, the Nth degree:

04 February 3:03 pm

If the trailer for American Football left you hungry for more, you're in luck.

Just in time to get Sounders fans revved up for their March 2nd season opener, Levy Films released a rough cut of their unfinished feature-length documentary on Seattle Sounders FC. The footage takes you even deeper into the world of Sigi Schmid and what it means to play on his team.

Even if the Sounders aren't your team, this video will leave you longing for the return of Major League Soccer, which is now only 26 days away. Enjoy!


15 January 3:52 pm

US international Robbie Rogers’ contract with Leeds United has been terminated by mutual consent, so what does that mean for the winger’s future? Could a return to MLS be in the cards?

The Columbus Dispatch has some early details for those wondering. For now, though, Rogers' agent is staying mum on the subject of potential destinations for the former Crew star.

The 25-year-old joined the Championship side 12 months ago after a successful trial period, but a head injury and ankle injury limited his involvement to just one start and three further appearances as a sub.

Rogers left MLS on a free transfer after five seasons with the Crew and is free to sign with any team overseas, but his rights belong to Columbus after the club made the left-footed winger a qualifying offer after the 2011 season.

Should Columbus bring him back? Or should Rogers look for another landing place in Europe?

08 January 7:03 pm

If you didn’t catch the trailer for American Football after it was accidentally posted in November, it's time to fire up that internet connection and block out six-and-a-half minutes.

The trailer is for an unfinished feature documentary on the Seattle Sounders FC, produced by Levy Films. And, well, the footage is incredible, truly capturing the beauty of the sport. It was shot in a way that makes you feel like you're part of the team – you hear personal struggles from some of the Sounders squad and are even witness to a post-game schooling from head coach Sigi Schmid. 

It’s an intimate look at the Seattle Sounders and will surely leave you wanting more. That is, unless you're a diehard Timbers or 'Caps fan.

Hopefully, Levy Films will finish the full doc soon, but it looks like the 2013 MLS season might kickoff before the film. But it seems it will be well worth the wait.

Original Video- More videos at TinyPic

05 December 8:13 pm

You bet your sweet bippy.

Here it is on r/MLS, the 2012, end-of-season awards. And I am awesome.

Does this kind of dominance come naturally, you may wonder?

It would be immodest to say "yes." It would also be wrong. As Malcolm Gladwell so eloquently (read: dubiously) explained in his pop-psychology best-seller Outliers, there may very well be a thing called "The 10,000 Hour Rule." And that if any talentless hack does one specific task for 10,000 hours or more, he'll probably get pretty good at it.

I guarantee you I've wasted 10,000 hours on the internet. Hell, I've probably done 20,000 hours. I remember 'TheSpark' before it became 'SparkNotes.' I spent hours on SoccerAmerica:Graffiti. I ran a linkshell in FFXI, for God's sake.

That's why I'm beating a World Cup veteran (Hi, Alexi!) and my boss (Um.. sorry, Chris) combined.

To blatantly rip off Stephen Colbert: I am like an athlete who has trained his entire life for a race he never knew was coming. And that race is "internet."

Thank you for your votes.

I'm Matt Doyle, and I approve this message.

03 December 1:37 pm

Les effluves de la victoire du LA Galaxy en finale samedi se font encore ressentir. Les vainqueurs de la Coupe MLS 2012 célébreront leur titre ce soir avec leurs supporters. Cette grande fête leur permettra de dire au revoir à David Beckham mais peut-être aussi de tourner la page Landon Donovan, toujours aussi incertain quant à son avenir.

À Houston, on panse encore les plaies de la défaite. Quel fut le tournant du match ? La terrible blessure de Carr ? Ou certaines décisions arbitrales qui, selon les finalistes malheureux, n’ont pas décidé de l’issue de la rencontre mais en ont changé l’allure ? Il y a une chose dont les Texans sont convaincus : ils ont largement dominé leur adversaire, mais ce n’était pas suffisant pour s’imposer.

Les autres équipes ont déjà la tête à 2013 depuis plus ou moins longtemps. Salt Lake se prépare à un grand ménage, prélude à une période des transferts qui s’annonce animée pour la plupart des 19 clubs. Suivez-la au quotidien sur : la colonne des arrivées de votre club favori va commencer à se remplir bientôt.

18 October 4:58 pm

Après la pause internationale, le championnat a déjà repris ses droits hier avec un partage sans but mais riche en spectacle entre Seattle et Salt Lake (résumé vidéo).

Ce week-end, toute l’attention sera tournée vers San José, pour des raisons tant sportives qu’extra-sportives. Le match de dimanche contre le LA Galaxy pourrait être historique à plus d'un titre.

Tout commencera par la première pelletée de terre du nouveau stade, qui devrait être fini début 2014. Le club veut battre le record Guinness de participation à un tel évènement, établi en Inde par 4532 personnes. 5500 supporters ont déjà réservé leur place pour la cérémonie de dimanche.

Ensuite, place au match. Si tout va bien, 90 minutes plus tard, San José sera assuré de terminer la saison régulière en tête du classement, et donc officiellement vainqueur du Supporters Shield 2012. Le jour de son affrontement avec le vainqueur du trophée la saison dernière, cela aura une saveur encore plus particulière.

Chris Wondolowski pourra rendre cette journée encore plus historique en inscrivant deux buts : il ferait ainsi passer son compteur à 27 et égalerait la performance de Roy Lassiter, qui détient depuis 1996 le record du nombre de buts inscrits en une saison régulière.

11 September 11:27 am

En déplacement au Panama, le Canada tentera ce mardi soir de confirmer son importante victoire de samedi dernier. Privé de Johnson (suspendu) et Occean (blessé), Stephen Hart annonce des surprises dans son onze de base. Les Canadiens compteront sur leur défense, qui n’a toujours pas encaissé à ce stade de la compétition, pour ramener un bon résultat de ce voyage, sur un meilleur terrain que lors des déplacements au tour précédent mais dans des conditions hostiles comme en témoigne la vidéo ci-dessous de supporters locaux dont le seul but est de nuire au repos des visiteurs…

De nombreux autres rencontres des éliminatoires de la Coupe du monde ont lieu aujourd'hui. Le programme des pays qui ont convoqué un ou plusieurs joueurs de MLS (voir la liste) se trouve ci-dessous. La pression est palpable pour l’équipe nationale américaine, qui a une revanche à prendre sur la Jamaïque après sa défaite à Kingston samedi dernier.

20h00 : Guyana - Salvador
20h11 : États-Unis - Jamaïque
21h00 : Mexique - Costa Rica
21h05 : Panama - Canada
21h30 : Honduras - Cuba
15h30 : Chili - Colombie
17h30 : Uruguay - Équateur
14h00 : Turquie - Estonie
14h30 : Suède - Kazakhstan
14h30 : Suisse - Albanie
14h45 : Italie - Malte
15h00 : Écosse - Macédoine
12h00 : Jordanie - Australie
03h35 : Nouvelle-Zélande - Îles Salomon 6-1
Toutes les heures HE (heure de New York et Montréal)