The intensity is gradually ratcheting up as MLS preseason training continues at a variety of locations around the world. Catch all the other news and updates from MLS training camps below. And for the entire February preseason schedule, click here.
SHALRIE PART II: Hey Revs fans, remember Shalrie Joseph? After bouncing around the Western Conference, he's made his way back "home" to New England and is part of Jay Heaps preseason roster.
A couple new unsigned players on the #NERevs preseason roster, including someone named Shalrie Joseph. Anyone recognize the name?— Jeff Lemieux (@jeff_lemieux) February 22, 2014
Yes, Shalrie Joseph is indeed in #NERevs camp as a trialist. Wearing number 47, could be available tonight vs. Chivas USA.— Jeff Lemieux (@jeff_lemieux) February 22, 2014
GOATS BY ANY OTHER NAME: Shalrie didn't play for the Revs -- he's still working his way toward fitness after a long layoff.
But Teal Bunbury did, and he scored his first for the Foxborough club. Not a shock -- everybody remembers the Bunbury of the early KC days, when he played himself into a few USMNT call-ups.
What was shocking was the Chvias response. Wilmer Cabrera's men looked reborn after a pretty turbulent week, with youngsters Carlos Alvarez and Tommy McNamara, as well as veterans Mauro Rosales and Cubo Torres getting it done. Final was a come-from-behind 3-2 win that's got to put a little pep in the step.
UNION STILL FINDING THE MIX: With two weeks left before the regular season kicks off, John Hackworth is still looking for the right mix in Philadelphia. He got another crack at it on Saturday as his team took on the Columbus Crew -- another group still in the process of determining their best XI.
An experimental back four, a first-choice midfield, and a mix of the two up front in a 4-3-3 wasn't enough for Philly, who fell 1-0.
WORLD CUPPERS TOGETHER: World Cup hopefuls Michael Parkhurst and Giancarlo Gonzalez have the pedigree to give the Crew a lockdown defense. But do they have the chemistry? They started together in central defense in that 1-0 win, with Gonzalez earning plaudits for his debut.
ROCKY MOUNTAIN RULERS: Sure, it may just be a preseason game. But any time the Colorado Rapids and Real Salt Lake go at it, it's gonna be at least a little bit salty.
That was the case on Saturday as the two teams engaged in a bit of handbags at the end as the Rapids picked up in 2014 where they left off in 2013: As winners in the Rocky Mountain Cup. The final was 1-0 thanks to DeShorn Brown, who potted his fourth goal of a more than encouraging preseason.
HAVIN' A LAUGH: Sometimes when you run up against a lower division club, they give you a good fight. Other times, they're road kill.
Consider the Ft. Lauderdale Strikers to be smushed.
They barely showed on on Saturday as Fabian Castillo was electric, netting once and setting up two others in a 6-1 demolition of the NASL club.
FINAL FC Dallas 6 FTL Strikers 1 - Castillo leads the way with a goal and two assists while Perez scores twice in FCDs Florida finale #DTID— FC Dallas (@FCDallas) February 23, 2014
SPORTING WIN WARMUP: The weather cooperated enough, so why not play two? Sporting KC got in a nice little scrimmage before the skies parted and rain started sheeting down, delaying (but not canceling) the afternoon session. They ran out 3-1 winners, using a mix of regulars and reserves, against Florida Gulf Coast University, then followed it up with a dominant 3-0 win over Fluminense's U-23s.
Here's Jacob Peterson's capper from the opener:
BROTHERS IN BATTLE: Intra-squad scrimmage? Sounds good for LA, and the gamesmanship has already begun between Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena and Galaxy II boss Curt Onalfo.
“Onalfo is a tough guy to beat,” Arena said. “They’ll be very technical, very attack-oriented.”
LIGHTS OUT: FC Tucson are, as always, happy hosts down in the high desert. But the Fire were rude guests, cruising to a 2-0 win:
DOS A CERO: New-look D.C. is finally giving their fans something to be happy about so far in the preseason. They finally claimed a scalp, topping Houston Dynamo team still trying to figure out their central defense:
CCL LOOKAHEAD: It's going to start to matter in a BIG way in a couple of weeks for the trio of MLS teams in continental action. The scouting out in San Jose has begun in earnest, and this much is clear: Toluca is no joke.
“It’s going to be a great test of where we are as a team,” says DP striker Chris Wondolowski to Robert Jonas for the CenterLine Report, “and it’s definitely going to be a big battle.”
STARRING ROLE: Michael Bradley is a big star. And part of being a big star is keeping the fans happy.
Keep your signing hand limber, Mike:
Bradley didn't play as TFC conceded a late equalizer in a 1-1 draw with hosts Orlando City:
INTERNATIONAL PEDIGREE: USMNT right back Brad Evans was the late hero for Seattle in the Carolina Challenge Cup opener, depositing a late penalty kick for the 2-1 win over the hosts.
Ozzie Alonso, who began his US journey with the Battery, got the first of the day for the men in Rave Green.
89’ - GOALLLLLLL!!!!!! Brad makes it 2-1 Sounders! #CCC14— Sounders Matchday (@LIVESounders) February 23, 2014