Jason Kreis DL

Kick Off: Champions League finales, Edu's big week

With a Supporters' Shield showdown looming over the weekend with the LA Galaxy, Real Salt Lake are not placing a premium on winning Group A of the CONCACAF Champions League and instead will field a reserve lineup tonight against Cruz Azul (10 p.m. ET, Fox Soccer Channel, Galavisión).

Playing for pride in Group A will be Toronto FC, who host Árabe Unido in their last match at BMO Field before MLS Cup 2010 (8 p.m. ET, Fox Soccer Channel).

The Columbus Crew, who fly to Trinidad and Tobago this morning, will be especially interested in the result of tonight's Group B match between Santos Laguna and Municipal (8 p.m. ET, TeleFutura). A win by Santos would finally wrap up the Crew’s passage into the next round.

Meanwhile, they’re still raving about the William Hesmer goal in Toronto, while remembering that he was once a Toronto FC goalkeeper.

The Seattle Sounders face Saprissa in their Champions League finale tonight with nothing to play for (10 p.m. ET, on delay at 4 a.m. ET Wednesday morning on Fox Soccer Channel), but don’t tell that to manager Sigi Schmid. Saprissa, on their part, need to go all out for the victory to qualify.

The Sounders are also potentially looking at opening the postseason at home on Halloween night. Schmid says he would dress up if it would ensure the fans show up … but "not as Lady Gaga."

The New York Red Bulls will be part of that MLS postseason push, but one writer says the club’s success has been due to its role players, and not its DPs.

The San Jose Earthquakes will be making their first postseason appearance since being reborn. The club's new president, David Kaval, says success is important before the team can open a new stadium.

A Soccer America writer and another from AOL Fanhouse give their take on the current playoff structure.

D.C. United have released the image of the poster commemorating Jaime Moreno’s final match in a DC jersey on Saturday at his RFK Stadium farewell.

DC midfielder/forward Carlos Varela is unsure whether he’ll be back with United next year, claiming serious contacts with a couple of Swiss clubs.

The Galaxy have been contacted for another trip to Australia, with reports of ongoing negotiations with the Newcastle Jets.

One former US Under-20 player is also heading overseas, to Brazil.

Get used to another name, who aims to make it big with the Under-17 national team, straight out of New York City.

In Philadelphia, Union president Tom Veit talks about the first season at PPL Park and the possibility of a jersey sponsor and third kit.

In preparation for their expansion season in 2011, the Portland Timbers will be making their first player announcements today. And their fellow expansion brethren, the Vancouver Whitecaps, won’t be too far behind, according to Bob Lenarduzzi.

First-team action may be way in the future for US forward Marcus Tracy, who plays for Danish club Aalborg and is reportedly back in the United States due to an injury setback.

Another American based overseas, US national-teamer Maurice Edu, is facing one of the biggest weeks of his career with Rangers.

Staying in international soccer, after using interims for the past couple of months, the Mexican national team finally named its new manager late Monday night.

Former Chicago Fire star Cuauhtémoc Blanco makes his return to the United States as he leads Irapuato in a friendly match in San Diego.

Meanwhile, judging by the press, Wayne Rooney’s divorce from Manchester United seems inevitable. There is an article about the forward jumping ship to Manchester City. Chelsea say they would also be interested should he become available.

One of Manchester United’s legendary midfielders, Roy Keane, had a few words of advice for Rooney: “Look out for number one.”

FIFA has made it clear that the World Cup scandal surrounding the awarding of the 2018 and 2022 World Cup could involve bidding nations receiving suspensions.

The Red Sox VP who convinced John Henry to pursue the Liverpool FC takeover is getting his 15 minutes of fame.

The video making the rounds today is that of Paraguayan World Cup legend José Luis Chilavert, who is seen punching an Argentine businessman with whom he shared some choice words after a flight to Paraguay.

Finally, on Tuesday afternoon, all eyes will be on the UEFA Champions League group stage matchup between Real Madrid and AC Milan (2:30 p.m. ET, Fox Soccer Channel). In addition there is Ajax vs. Auxerre (2:30 p.m. ET, Fox Soccer Plus) and Spartak Moscow vs. Chelsea will kick things off from Russia at 12:30 p.m. ET (Fox Deportes).

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