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12 June 12:25 de la tarde

 

*A previous version of this story claimed 500,000 Salvadorans welcomed Mexico at their hotel. After further review, the original article states around 1,500 were in attendance. Use online translation services with extreme caution.

You probably thought the US would have it bad in Guatemala City, what with the normal torments experienced by American sides venturing down to Central America.

But that appears to be strictly child's play when compared to the reception Mexico is getting in El Salvador. According to MedioTiempo.com, somewhere around 1,500 Salvadorans* gathered at El Tri's hotel on Monday night in San Salvador to make sure the team that arrives at Estadio Cuscatlán on Tuesday is running on as little sleep as possible. Google Translate tells me that the crowd banged drums, sang songs inapproriate for this space and set off rockets throughout the night, while also killing time by "jiggling" the cars that had the unfortune to turn up the wrong street.

You know, a normal Monday night with Mexico in town.

Now, I'm not entirely sure I buy the claim that the gathering drew 500,000 people essentially a fifth of the city's metro population but The video and photos paint a pretty clear picture. The Salvadoran fans mean business, and Mexico haven't even walked out of the tunnel yet.

11 June 5:09 de la tarde

Andriy Shevchenko may be taking his talents to Major League Soccer.

The 35-year-old Ukrainian icon has been linked to MLS and says he has "several offers." In a report by The New York Times, Shevchenko — who is married to former American supermodel Kristen Pazik — is prepared to spend time with his two sons in the United States.

While he plans on waiting until after this month's European Championship to make any decisions, he has certainly proved he still has the scoring touch. In Ukraine's 2-1 victory over Sweden in the opening round game of Group D on Monday, Shevchenko scored twice in three minutes to overcome a 1-0 deficit and propel the co-hosts to the top of the leaderboard.

Sheva now has 49 goals in 109 caps for Ukraine, and after a quiet few years since his disappointing production at both Chelsea and AC Milan, a 2009 move to Dynamo Kyiv helped fuel his resurgence. With 23 goals in 53 games, it's become clear that despite his age, he refuses to go away quietly.

While we will not know for certain Shevchenko's intentions until he settles in after the Euros, his move to the States looks more like a "when" than an "if." With the type of numbers he is putting up, and the current form he is in, there are certainly no shortage of MLS teams who could use his firepower up front.

11 June 1:15 de la tarde

It may have gotten lost outside Philadelphia with Euro 2012 hogging the headlines, but rumors swirled this weekend that Union head coach Peter Nowak had put his name in the hat for the managerial opening at Scottish Premier League side Hearts.

Nowak was quick to deny the claims, but that doesn't mean the Edinburgh Evening News' Barry Anderson is backing off his report, coming out on Twitter to make his position clear.

So who to believe? Tell us what you think in the comment section below.

11 June 12:42 de la tarde

Are you committed to making a difference in your community?

Do you have a friend or neighbor that goes above and beyond the call of duty?

NOMINATE YOUR COMMUNITY MVP TODAY!

Major League Soccer is looking for individuals who promote goodwill and help to improve lives in their community.  From May 24 to June 21, MLS fans throughout the League will have the opportunity to nominate themselves or other individuals who go above and beyond to make a difference in their community.  One (1) Community MVP will be selected to represent each of the 19 MLS clubs.

One Grand Prize winner will receive $10,000 for their charity of choice and a trip to the 2012 AT&T MLS All-Star game at PPL Park.

For full contest details, click here.

11 June 12:05 de la tarde

Jimmy Conrad is a lucky man.

Somehow he convinced the powers that be to send him to Euro 2012 accompanied by a couple video cameras, leading to widespread envy around the MLS digital offices.

Then, during the mayhem before Sunday's Spain-Italy match in Gdansk, he miraculously managed to purchase an elusive ticket to one of the biggest matches of the group stages – a tactical masterclass between the tiki-taka Spaniards and doggedly pragmatic Italians. In the process, he scammed a bunch of unsuspecting fans into handing out hugs and generally cavorted around the city doing his best to share the experience with the rest of us.

It's just not fair, but at least Conrad is sending footage of his adventures back for all of us to enjoy. Even if it feels like he's just rubbing it in sometimes.

Part 1 - Spain vs. Italy: Hugs, Kisses & Craziness

Part 2 - Spain vs. Italy: Spain Supporters Section

11 June 11:52 de la mañana

Un deuxième joueur désigné rejoindra-t-il bientôt Marco Di Vaio à Montréal ? Une pluie de noms, souvent très célèbres, peuplent en tout cas les médias, le web et les réseaux sociaux.

Le club suit la piste Clarence Seedorf : Nick De Santis a déclaré qu’ils avaient parlé argent mais qu’aucune offre concrète n’avait été soumise. Le Néerlandais est aussi sérieusement convoité par Botafogo et Tottenham. En Allemagne, on reparle des diverses options en MLS de Michael Ballack, citant Montréal comme premier choix. Andrei Shevchenko aurait de son côté refusé une offre de l'Impact.

À moins que tout ce monde ne soit coiffé par un gardien ? Donovan Ricketts s’est blessé et le gardien de Saint-Étienne,  Jérémie Janot, est à Montréal en ce moment. Une visite à son ami Youssef Dahha, entraîneur des gardiens chez les jeunes de l’Impact. Mais Janot semble prendre la direction de Lens. Et pendant que le club refroidissait la piste Del Piero, certains voyaient Nick De Santis et Alessandro Nesta se promener au centre-ville.

Mais la véritable vedette québécoise des derniers jours, c’est Olivier Occean, qui a marqué le but de la victoire du Canada 0-1 à Cuba : trois points précieux avant de recevoir le Honduras, en quête de revanche après sa défaite 0-2 face au Panama. 

10 June 9:48 de la tarde

It's been a whirlwind few months for Terrence Boyd (above, credit: MexSport), and to cap it all off, he will soon get his first taste of top-flight soccer.

A report in Austria publication sport10.at (in German) suggests that Boyd's long-rumored move from Borussia Dortmund to Rapid Vienna is all but sealed. He is set to fly to Austria and finalize the deal following the United States' World Cup qualifier at Guatemala on Tuesday.

He is quoted as saying to sport10.at, "The league is very attractive and is highly-regarded in Germany. In my opinion a young player can advance a lot in this league."

In addition to playing top-flight soccer, Boyd will get to test his wits in the Europa League, by virtue of Rapid's second-place finish in the 2011-12 Austrian Bundesliga. The club was also a recent stop for a pair of D.C. United players – Hamdi Salihi and Branko Boskovic.

Boyd joins the 32-time Austrian champions on the back of a 20-goal season for Dortmund's reserve team, which plays in the German fourth division. His breakout year, movement, and ability to trouble defenders with his physicality earned him the attention of Jurgen Klinsmann and the US coaching staff. 

Though he hasn't played top-flight soccer yet, he made his national team debut in the USA's 1-0 victory over Italy in February and scored two goals in the ultimately disappointing Olympic qualifying campaign. He came on as a substitute in the Americans' 3-1 World Cup qualifying win over Antigua and Barbuda, cap-tying him to the United States and bringing his total to four caps.

Is Boyd's move to Austria the right step forward for the 21-year-old? How do you think he will cope with the pressure of top-flight professional soccer? As is the case with young players, it's too early to tell, but all the signs point to a bright future for the young man.

10 June 8:05 de la tarde

Former US men's national team coach Bob Bradley has enjoyed a wildly successful start to his career in charge of Egypt's national team, winning the hearts of the Egyptian people and plenty of games.

Things looked a little less rosy, though, in Bradley's second World Cup qualifier, away to Guinea. Alhassane Bangoura netted an improbable equalizer for the 10-man West African side in the 88th minute, and Egypt looked headed for a tie that would've made the competition for a coveted spot in the final round of qualifying all that much difficult.

Egypt forward Mohamed Salah had other ideas though and scored in the fifth minute of stoppage time to hand Egypt a 3-2 win and put them firmly on top of their group.

It's still a long road to the World Cup for The Pharaohs – they still have four more group games, and if they keep it up, they'll face a do-or-die two-legged playoff to get to Brazil. Still, Guinea away is at least on paper the most dificult task Bradley's men will face until that playoff, and though they are not in action again until March 2013, they will certainly be feeling good about their chances.

Can Bradley take Egypt to the World Cup? If both Egypt and the US make it, how cool would it be to see the ex-US coach take on his former side? Weigh in with your comments beow.

08 June 9:19 de la tarde

Well, that was unsatisfying. At least Canadians can look at their win over Cuba and say, "Hey, it was on the road." The US don't have that luxury after a hard-fought, uneven 3-1 win over Antigua and Barbuda in Tampa.

I can't say I'm surprised. Disappointed, surely, but not surprised. This is a disjointed, confused, and somewhat rudderless US team.

Oguchi Onyewu is done as an international-caliber defender

Bad showing against Brazil? Hey, it happens.

But the same against the Benna Boys? You're done.

It's kind of deceiving because Gooch still looks like he did way back in the summer of 2009 when he had that great showing in the Confederations Cup, but the similarity ends there. His lateral quickness is nil, his passing has always been subpar and his reading of the game has actually regressed. The vast majority of MLS defenders would have bottled up that touch from Byers; Gooch rolled with it and gave him a direct line to Tim Howard's goal.

That's unacceptable in any context. In a game that matters, with a then-fragile 2-0 lead? It's mutinous.

Jurgen Klinsmann needs to bury Gooch on the depth chart. He's a liability against even the worst teams.

If it comes down to goal differential, the US are in trouble

How many goals will the US score in Guatemala City or Kingston playing like this? It's relevant, since Mexico only went through to the Hexagonal on goal differential four years ago.

The US will not have that luxury — not after this performance, and even more so on Tuesday. That means the margin for error is razor thin, and any loss will be a potentially crippling one.

Does that mean Klinsmann should add more attackers to the mix?

Absolutely. Not only was the output poor, but so was recovery of the second ball and pressure in the final third. Putting Jozy Altidore or Terrence Boyd in alongside Herculez Gomez from the start would have given the US a better chance at taking advantage of all those chances they created.

Set pieces are still a thing the US can do well

Landon Donovan's service was perfect pretty much all game long. Carlos Bocanegra, Clarence Goodson, Herculez Gomez, Clint Dempsey, Maurice Edu and Michael Bradley are all excellent targets.

That was the difference against the Benna Boys. (How horrible is that to contemplate, by the way?)

It will continue to be the area where the US have the biggest advantage throughout this semifinal round. Klinsmann's men will have to milk that for all it's worth, or there may be no Hexagonal in 2013.

08 June 5:21 de la tarde

One of the features of the MLS W.O.R.K.S. blog will be to promote community-related stories from our 19 clubs. We want to highlight what is going on in the communities where they play and where you live.

Check out some of the club highlights from this week:

San Jose Earthquakes urge fans to Get Fit

Colorado's LaBauex and Wynne host clinic for physically and emotionally disabled athletes

Galaxy's DeLaGarza, Jimenez, Sarvas and Juninho head out into the community

Portland Timbers recognize June Stand Together All-Star

Dynamo's Cameron named June Humanitarian of the Month

Chicago Fire fan hikes the Appalachian Trail for Foundation

United Soccer Club's Spring Kick

Seattle's Carrasco supports breast cancer event

For more community news, visit the MLS W.O.R.K.S. news section.