Looking for something to do on this soggy night? Venezuela, fresh off a Copa America semifinal, plays Honduras tonight in a friendly at Lockhart Stadium in Fort Lauderdale. A large, and spirited crowd is expected.
Hey there Soccer-holics. Just getting back from vacation.
In case you missed it, here is my Sunday column addressing Miami's MLS hopes and new US coach Jurgen (no umlaut anymore) Klinsmann. Do you agree? Disagree? Let me know. Would love to get more conversation going on this blog. Don't be afraid. Jump right in. Just keep it clean and respectful.
In other news, soccer matches all over London have been canceled today due to rioting. Very, very sad. London -- one of the great cities of the world -- is burning. Hope it stops soon.
Also read today that Real Madrid signed a 7-year-old! No, I'm not kidding. A 7-year-old Argentine kid signed with Real Madrid today. And his nickname is...Leo! Read all about him here!
Finally, word is that former US coach Bob Bradley is in talks with Egypt about becoming their coach. Good man. Wish him well wherever he lands.
Hi from Sun Life Stadium..place is rocking! Crowd of 70,080 is largest for soccer match in state history! Heavy traffic getting here. A sea of Barca jerseys in the stands (mostly Messi's No. 10)
Barca's starting 11: Pinto, Piqué, Thiago, Xavi, Villa, Keita, Dos Santos, Abidal, Fontàs, Carmona, Cuenca
Chivas starting 11: Michel, DeLuna, Reynoso, Araujo, Esparza, Fabian, Arellano, Medina, Ponce, Baez, Mejia
National anthem. Fireworks! Here we go...
Chivas nearly takes lead in second minute, but Barca defender Abidal clears it off line in time.
David Villa GOOOAL! fourth minute. Barca 1, Chivas 0.
Halftime: Barca 1, Chivas 0.
Second half: Xavi, Villa, Pique out. Iniesta, Pedro, Busquets in.
60th minute, Chivas SCORES! Golazo by Marco Fabian, into upper left corner to tie the score 1-1.
63rd minute. WOW! Fabian finds back of net again, this one on a gorgeous scissor kick to give Chivas 2-1 lead. Crowd, stunned, begins to chant "Barca!"
72nd minute. Chivas strikes again! Giovanni Casillaas scores to make it 3-1.
And the Mexican team isn't done yet...Jose Luis Verduzco scores in extra time and it's 4-1 Chivas over Barca. Crowd -- and Barca bench -- are stunned. Exhibition, yes. But nobody expected this score.
The Women's Professional Soccer league and Dan Borislow, the unorthdox, controversial owner of the Boca Raton-based MagicJack team, have been feuding for quite some time, and it appears the league is so fed up it is seeking to terminate the club after this season. Here is today's press release from the league...
"Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) holds all teams and owners to a uniform professional standard, and all owners must agree to those standards in order to play in the League. When Dan Borislow took over as the majority owner of the Washington Freedom (now magicJack) franchise, Mr. Borislow had an obligation to follow, and embrace these standards and to honor the franchise’s commitments to the League, players and sponsors.
Mr. Borislow has failed to honor his commitments to the detriment of the League, our players and our partners. From unprofessional and disparaging treatment of his players to failure to pay his bills, Mr. Borislow’s actions have been calculated to tarnish the reputation of the League and damage the League’s business relationships. Now, Mr. Borislow has filed a baseless legal action against WPS. The League is not intimidated by Mr. Borislow’s unfounded claims and will not tolerate his mistreatment of players and flouting of the rules.
Mr. Borislow is asking a Florida court to bar the League from exercising its right to terminate his franchise at the end of the season for breach of his contractual obligations. No such entitlement exists under League contracts, and Mr. Borislow’s many contractual breaches more than justify any decision by the League to terminate his franchise.
“It is disappointing that rather than run a professional organization and partner with his fellow owners, Mr. Borislow has chosen to threaten the League by filing this action,” said WPS Board Chairman and Atlanta Beat Owner, T. Fitz Johnson. “All of us at WPS are involved in this business because we love the sport, we are committed to our incredible athletes and fans, and we know that there is a permanent place in sports for the women’s professional game.”
“We continue to focus on our world-class athletes and their accomplishments, and we won’t let the antics of one owner steal the moment from them and from our fans,” said Anne-Marie Eileraas, CEO, Women’s Professional Soccer. “We will defend the League against Mr. Borislow’s latest attack and will continue to hold all of our teams to the same professional standards in order to protect our players, fans, teams, partners and the integrity of the sport.”
It would truly be a shame if the two sides can't work this out. In the wake of the Women's World Cup buzz, MagicJack has been a hot ticket. The club drew a league-record 15,404 in Rochester (Abby Wambach's hometown) for a game against Western NY, drew 9,345 for a game in Atlanta, and last week drew team-record crowds of 3,200 at FAU for their first two home games since the World Cup.
They have a home game tonight at 7 against New Jersey. Stay tuned!
Well, the media was told not to publicize where Barca is practicing, but MLS mentioned in a press release that Barca trained at UM, and UM put out a press release about the Barca practices, so...cat's out of the bag. Here's the UM release...
FC Barcelona went through an array of running and passing drills during the hour-long session.
Team captain Carles Puyol was seen working with Barça’s personal trainers, jogging around Cobb Stadium and stretching as part of his rehabilitation from a knee injury. The rest of the club used much of the session to work on short-range passing drills, a testament to the team’s trademark possession game.
Midfielder Xavi Hernandez practiced at full speed, evidence that the starter is recovering nicely from a leg injury that has kept him from preseason play. Meanwhile, starters Gerard Piqué, Andrés Iniesta and David Villa mixed it up with newcomers Thiago Alcántara do Nascimiento and Ibrahim Afellay. Head coach Pep Guardiola looked on and periodically corrected some of the younger members of the roster.
A crowd of about 50 fans gathered outside the gates of Cobb Stadium to show their support, while an almost equal number of reporters interviewed midfielder Seydou Keita following the team’s work out.
The club will return to Miami’s facilities three more times during the days leading up to their matchup against Mexican squad Chivas de Guadalajara at Sun Life Stadium on Wednesday.
Fans can check out the award-winning Cobb Stadium and the Hurricanes Soccer team in person when the Canes open their home schedule on Aug. 19 against the University of Florida at 7 p.m.
Barcelona was scheduled to arrive in Miami Sunday night, and has a training session scheduled for this morning. Sorry, public is not invited. Heard a few players will make an appearance at Soccer Locker on US-1 near Dadeland between 11 a.m. and noon.
Chivas arrives this afternoon.
Word is, 60,000 tickets have been sold for Wednesday night's game at Sun Life Stadium.
Should be a blast! I am on vacation, but will be back in time for the game. Check the Herald next few days for full coverage.