Kick Off: Zakuani wants piece of LA, Henry doubtful
The Supporters’ Shield winning LA Galaxy are not a team necessarily in search of bulletin board material. But they got some anyway.
That’s because Seattle Sounders winger Steve Zakuani says he specifically wanted a piece of the Galaxy in the first round of the playoffs. He says the Sounders “owe them one” after two regular-season losses to the Galaxy.
Colorado Rapids goalkeeper Matt Pickens is another not to hide his feelings, saying that he “likes the Rapids’ draw.” The Columbus Crew are forewarned.
Entering their postseason series vs. San Jose, the New York Red Bulls are a team that is battling through injuries. The most important of those is Designated Player Thierry Henry, who is reportedly still a doubt for the trip to San Jose for the first leg against the Earthquakes.
The Seattle Sounders are also treading lightly with their Colombian star Fredy Montero ahead of the Halloween first leg match against the LA Galaxy.
Injury has already left its mark on the Crew’s postseason. For those unfamiliar with the “Hebrew Hammer,” the Columbus Dispatch speaks to Crew backup ‘keeper Andy Grunenbaum, who will need to fill in for starter William Hesmer during the playoffs.
More than a few teams are not entering the postseason in their best form. Take defending MLS Cup champions Real Salt Lake, who are coming off what one player called “the worst performance of the season” against Colorado. Manager Jason Kreis is still critical.
One writer makes the case for why Sebastien Le Toux should be the frontrunner for the MLS MVP award.
A club looking for a scorer this offseason will be D.C. United, but it won’t happen through a Designated Player, according to the team’s president and CEO.
Meanwhile the Galaxy’s DP, David Beckham, has pledged to play out the remainder of his contract with the LA Galaxy although he does not know what’s to come after.
The CBC has made up its mind on who should be the next GM of Toronto FC and it turns out the individual is right under the club’s nose.
One person who believes he can do the job for his club is current DC manager Ben Olsen, who has been ruled out of the managerial position for D.C. United in 2011.
The man with the infamous handball in the USA vs. Germany quarterfinal in the 2002 World Cup is sending feelers to the New York Red Bulls. Torsten Frings says he’s interested in coming to MLS, specifically in the Big Apple.
Costa Rican Carlos Johnson is reportedly biding his time in his home country and waiting to sign with an MLS team come January.
In an interview with Soccer America, MLS Commissioner Don Garber talks about how Montreal has earned the chance to be part of MLS in 2012 and how impressed he is with the management team of the New York Cosmos.
The Vancouver Whitecaps, meanwhile, who join MLS in 2011, are closing in on their season ticket quota of 16,500 fans and will likely be forced to increase capacity, according to the club's chief executive.
A brand new team will be opening its doors in Orlando, Fla., as one of the most successful clubs of the USSF D-2, the Austin Aztex, have officially relocated.
SI.com columnist Dan Shaugnessy explains why he thinks Liverpool FC fans can be confident that John Henry will turn around the club.
Also from England, there is talk of the EPL's Newcastle being ready to compete with Everton for a Landon Donovan loan deal in the MLS offseason.
Crazy video of a player from the Brazilian second division who slips down a player tunnel after taking a shoulder from his opponent.
A better clip of the Real Sociedad goal celebration, where the players hop in a vehicle stationed behind the fieldboards. No cautions to any of them.
In televised soccer action today, some of the big clubs are involved in domestic cup competitions. Manchester United take on Marcus Hahnemann and Wolverhampton in the Carling Cup (3 p.m. ET, Fox Soccer Plus) while Real Madrid travel to face Murcia (2 p.m. ET, GolTV).
Lastly, sad news involving the death of Paul the Oracle Octopus. He left us way too soon.
MLSsoccer.com Must Reads
Kansas City Wizards already looking ahead to 2011 season
Why Sacha Kljestan’s US national team days are numbered
MLS Cup Playoff edition of The Thermometer