blog

Preseason

14 March 1:33 pm

On the MLS Road Trip to First Kick, we documented the journey of the match ball from Philadelphia to Dallas, and shot some quick bits with players in various cities along the way to help keep the ball moving. For the most part, these shoots went off without a hitch. In Orlando one day, we made it to the end of Houston's training session to shoot with the Dynamo pair of Tally Hall and Brad Davis. Brad took a couple shots on Tally, who made the saves, then got up and threw the ball out to his right. Easy. The next shot called for Brad to receive the throw from Tally, take a touch, and volley to his right. Let's just say Brad didn't approach that first take with the seriousness and focus he normally brings to the pitch in MLS (you can hear Tally mockingly call him "All Star" around 0:18).

Fortunately for everyone involved, Brad did re-focus and managed to knock out a pretty good take from Tally's throw (his teammate was actually throwing it to him off camera) at 0:47 of the finished video HERE.

07 March 3:08 pm

Si la saison est sur le point de commencer, la période des transferts est encore très chaude. Dernière preuve en date : l’annonce de la signature d’Arne Friedrich à Chicago. Le défenseur allemand débarquera en MLS avec un palmarès de deux demi-finales de Coupe du monde, un titre de vice-champion d’Europe et plus de 80 sélections en équipe nationale.

Tous les clubs de MLS ont été très actifs sur le marché au cours de l’hiver. Si vous voulez voir toutes les transactions en un coup d’œil, c’est très simple : MLSsoccer.com a pensé à vous et les a rassemblées sur cette page.

Maintenant, à vous de vous exprimer :

  • Quel club a réalisé LE transfert de l’hiver (et, évidemment, qui est le joueur en question) ?
  • Quelle équipe s’est renforcée là où elle en avait vraiment besoin ?
  • Qui a raté son hiver et vivra une saison difficile à cause de ça ?
  • Quelle est la meilleure acquisition et la plus grande perte de votre club favori ?
  • Quel joueur venu de l’étranger est le renfort le plus important pour la MLS ?
  • Quel départ vers l’étranger ou joueur parti à la retraite va le plus vous manquer ?
06 March 1:26 pm

Bonjour à tous et bienvenue sur Coup Franc, la première section en français du site MLSsoccer.com.

Avec l’arrivée de l’Impact de Montréal, la MLS effectue son entrée en terres francophones et il est tout à fait logique de pouvoir suivre ses activités en français. C’est ce que nous nous efforcerons de faire ici.

Si vous voulez tout savoir sur l’Impact de Montréal, nous vous suggérons le portail officiel du club (impactmontreal.com) ainsi que tous les autres sites qui parlent du club, et ils sont nombreux, que ce soient des sites spécialisés, de supporters, de médias,…

L’objectif ici est vraiment de pouvoir vous informer sur tout ce qu’il se passe en Major League Soccer, de vous donner un avant-goût des sommets à venir, des comptes-rendus de chaque journée de championnat, de vous faire partager des moments insolites, de vous familiariser avec les équipes et les joueurs, etc.

Cet espace est fait pour vous, et comme sur MLSsoccer.com, nous attachons une grande importance à l’interactivité, n’hésitez jamais à réagir aux nouvelles et à nous faire part de vos suggestions.

En attendant, nous nous réjouissons d'inviter les 220 millions de francophones venus de tous les continents à venir parler le langage le plus universel entre tous : celui du ballon rond !

05 March 11:09 am

Creativity is definitely a collaborative process. In this case, the idea was to have Jay DeMerit try to fit the names of all seven dwarfs into his recent interview with Temryss Lane (watch the interview HERE if you're not sure what I'm talking about), and the collaboration came between Jay and I after a sunny Whitecaps training session in Orlando last week. We had pitched the 1-on-1 interview to Vancouver's PR Director and I was following up with Jay to discuss the specifics and the timing of meeting him at the team hotel, and we both thought that adding some kind of gimmick to the proceedings would make things a bit more fun.

As the team captain and a veteran of the professional game, Jay has become more than accustomed to these standard sit-down interviews, so some variety here would be a good thing for all parties involved. My first thoughts were about the various goofy games the characters in "Super Troopers" played, primarily when the one guy (pretty sure it was Foster) had to fit "meow" multiple times into his interaction with a motorist (played quite ably by Jim Gaffigan), but there wasn't a real logical connection there. Being at Disney World, however, we quickly came up with the idea of the seven dwarfs, though I don't think either of us could name all of them off the top of our heads. Going through the ones we did know, we figured "Doc" and "Happy" were going to be pretty easy, then came up with possible uses for "Dopey" and "Grumpy" as well. The team left shortly thereafter, and the rest was going to be up to Jay.

Our next task (besides researching the whole list) was trying to keep the secret from Temryss, who was conducting the interview. I told her we were going to try doing something a little different, and for her to just to keep the interview going as she normally would, but it quickly became apparent what was going on when Jay lost it after dropping "Bashful" the first time (the first clip in the video). By the time the second clip happened, she was onto it, and when Jay threw "Grumpy" in there, she couldn't hold it together. As Temryss was wrapping up the interview, Jay had fit six of the seven in, and I was off camera pointing to the word "Sneezy" on a piece of paper. He thought quickly, and came up with the sneeze at the end, but hadn't really thought out what else to say to conclude, so that funny exchange (clip three in the video) resulted. All in all, it was a blast to collaborate with such a funny guy, and made for a great time throughout the entire production process. "Work" can indeed be fun.

02 March 4:33 pm

TUCSON, Ariz. – Juan Agudelo returned to New York Red Bulls practice here on Friday, walking a little taller. Literally.

The 19-year-old striker scored the US Olympic team’s opener in their 2-0 win over their Mexican counterparts in Texas on Wednesday – his first goal in a US shirt since his strike against Argentina nearly a year ago.

And Agudelo gives full credit to the bleached mop rising off the center of his scalp.

“It was just a play that we drew up the day before at practice, actually,” he explained to MLSsoccer.com. “Just a near-post cross off a corner kick and I was able to get my head on it with the Mohawk.”

If that ‘hawk looks like an homage to a certain Wesley Snipes movie to you, you’re not alone. Apparently Agudelo’s ‘do immediately reminded US Under-23 head coach Caleb Porter of the Stallone/Snipes sci-fi action classic Demolition Man.

 

 

And right there, folks, is where the generation gap between the 37-year-old coach and the teenage striker becomes apparent.

“Caleb told me about that – I didn’t really know about Demolition Man,” Agudelo admitted.

Fair enough. He wasn’t even a year old when the movie came out in 1993.

“I searched on Google images and it was like I was staring at myself,” he continued. “It wasn’t what I was going for, but that’s the way it worked out.”

Maybe it's time to add "Simon Phoenix" and "Demolition Man" to Swagudelo's growing list of nicknames.

WATCH: Agudelo on his time with the US U-23s

02 March 2:33 pm

De vuelta en Orlando, Fla. para el juego pretemporada entre FC Dallas y Toronto FC, me topé con Zarek Valentin, el defensa del Montreal Impact que nos compartió su alegría por la victoria que obtuvo con el equipo preolímpico de Estados Unidos sobre México en un crucial amistoso esta semana… pero ojo, se le está olvidando el español por estar aprendiendo francés.

02 March 2:05 pm

I promise you this was not set up.

Whitecaps forward Eric Hassli spent today's post-practice media availability talking up his teammates as players but also citing new sense of camaraderie among the team as a reason for their impressive preseason form (they've been the best team here in Orlando, at least for my money). And then, as if on cue, this happened. It's like the soccer gods willed it to offer proof to the world that what Hassli spoke was the truth.

There's no doubt that the Whitecaps will fare better in 2012 than they did last year and that they now seem more like a team that 11 guys wearing the same colored shirt --that's the Impact's problem now. We'll just have to wait and see if their good times will roll all the way to MLS Cup.

02 March 1:00 pm

Being a referee is not just a thankless job; sometimes it can be downright dangerous.  One AR found out the hard way when he became collateral damage on this rough tackle.

02 March 1:03 am

My trip down to the Disney Pro Soccer Classic has been a trip of many firsts: my first time in Orlando, my first trip to Disney. Add my first NBA game to the list as I just spent an evening with the guys from Sporting KC basking in the vertically-gifted glow of Kevin Durant and Dwight Howard.

For the Sporting KC players, staff, ownership and family, it was a fun night away from the tedium of the practice field and the hotel. For me it was an opportunity to see a bit of live sport that wasn't soccer --a very rare treat-- and to catch up with a few players I hadn't seen in a while like CJ Sapong, Kei Kamara and Chance Myers. I also got to see Aurelien Collin rock a leather vest over a sleeveless shirt while wearing sneakers covered in metal spikes; who knew Mad Max had a French cousin who played centerback?

Teal Bunbury was also in the house, fresh off of the U.S. Olympic team's victory over Mexico last night in Dallas. Unfortunately for him rookie Dom Dwyer was also there to. Check out the clip above and you'll see what I mean.

01 March 5:09 pm

TUCSON, Ariz. – Lionel Messi. Arjen Robben. Sebastian Velasquez?

Real Salt Lake captain Kyle Beckerman made that lofty comparison of the Colombian-born, South Carolina-raised rookie attacker who has been impressing in preseason camp.

It’s that left-footed unpredictability that has Beckerman – and all of RSL – excited.

“He’s got that lefty whatever it is,” Beckerman said on Wednesday night. “I can’t pinpoint it but Messi has it, Arjen Robben. These lefties. Fabián [Espíndola] has it. They’re able to skin players.”

Not bad company for a guy who played junior college ball. But then again, not even Messi or Robben scored 55 goals over 33 games, like Velasquez did at tiny Spartanburg Methodist College.

What do you think? Is Velasquez the real deal?