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33 posts from May 2014

Friday, May 23, 2014

Newest Beckham stadium plans

David Beckham's group on Thursday unveiled their new plans for a downtown #MLS stadium and waterfront park at the FEC boat slip between AmericanAirlines Arena and Museum Park. It would join the museum area with the arena and create a continuous green space along the water that, in my opinion, would be much more attractive than what is there now. In my mind, it would enhance the waterfront area and make it more of an attraction. Right now, the FEC slip area is underutilized, there is no nature there, and there are beer cans and garbage floating in the water. The project still has a long way to go, and voters will get to decide in November. Stay tuned.

Donovan reaction to snub, Klinsmann quote

World Cup Countdown: 20 Days to Go!

I am still stunned with the news that Landon Donovan was left off the US World Cup team. Is he as fast and fit as in his younger years? No. Is he still a better choice for a World Cup team than an 18-year-old German kid whose international experience consists of one half of one game, who does not play on his club team's first team, and who spent almost no time in this country? Yes, I believe Landon would have contributed more to this team -- on AND off the field -- than Julian Green. I'm sure Green is a great kid, and has a bright future, but Donovan is the face of American soccer, a leader, and even if he isn't a starter, he could have added creativity, vision and experience off the bench. Klinsmann obviously knows more about soccer than I do, but this move seems strange and may backfire.

Here is Klinsmann's explanation:

"This is certainly one of the toughest decisions — the toughest decision in my coaching career – to tell a player like him with everything he’s done and what he represents, to tell him that you’re not part of those 23 right now,” Klinsmann said in a video released Thursday by US Soccer. “I just see some other players slightly ahead of him.”

“The last 10 days he did everything right,” Klinsmann said of Donovan’s performance in training camp. “He was always positive, he took it the best way possible. So his disappointment is huge. I totally understand that. He took it very professional, because he’s an outstanding professional player and he knows that I have the highest respect for him.

“But I have to make the decisions as of today. I have to make the decisions what is good today for this group going into Brazil and I just think that the other guys right now are a little bit ahead of him and I told him that. And he understands it, but obviously he’s very disappointed.”

And here is Donovan's message he posted to fans on Facebook: “It has been an honor and privilege to have represented the US National Team in three World Cups. I was looking forward to playing in Brazil and, as you can imagine, I am very disappointed with today’s decision. Regardless, I will be cheering on my friends and teammates this summer, and I remain committed to helping grow soccer in the US in the years to come. Thanks for all your support, Landon.

And here is former MLS player Jimmy Conrad's response on Twitter: Just double checking my math. 1 cap, no 1st team minutes with club team > 156 caps, 5 World Cup goals, best player in U.S. history. Got it.

 

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Marlins Park friendly, German players injured

World Cup Countdown: 23 Days to Go!!

Yet another international soccer match in Miami this summer: AS Monaco of France will play Atletico Nacional of Colombia at Marlins Park on July 23 at 7 p.m. as part of the Copa EuroAmericana exhibition tournament.

Across the pond in Germany, captain Philipp Lahn and goalkeeper Manuel Neuer suffered injuries in the German Cup final, but Bayern Munich announced that they are expected to be fit in time for the World Cup.

Neuer hurt his right shoulder during extra time and Lahm injured his left ankle. Neuer was seen with his arm in a sling leaving the team doctor's office.

Despite the injuries, both players are scheduled to travel with the German national team to training camp in Northern Italy on Wednesday.

Lahm is expected to miss a week of training.

"We are optimistic in regards to the World Cup participation of Manuel and Philipp, both, however, need to be treated intensively," Germany head coach Joachim Loew said via the German football federation (DFB). It is good and important that we will have them in South Tirol [at the Germany training camp] from day one, in spite of them not being able to train at the beginning.

Loew invited 27 players to camp and will cut down to 23 after their June 1 tuneup match against Cameroon. Germany is in the same World Cup group as the United States, along with Portugal and Ghana. 

 

 

 

Sunday, May 18, 2014

FREE Panini stickers in Herald today

Before you throw away that Sunday Miami Herald, dig inside and find a FREE page of Panini World Cup trading stickers. It's the rage in South Florida, and all over the world. Have you filled your book? Are you a collector? Who are you missing? Who you want to trade? Let us know here.

Klinsmann, US face tough road

World Cup Countown: 24 Days To Go...

Only 24 days to the World Cup, and US coach Jurgen Klinsmann faces some tough choices in the next few weeks and then a tough road in Brazil. Read a preview of the US team here.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Strikers-Minnesota battle for 1st

The Fort Lauderdale Strikers and Minnesota FC are tied atop the NASL standings, and they play each other tonight in Minnesota. Winner gets sole position of the lead.

Going to Brazil? Don't have visa? Time's running out!

World Cup Countown: 26 Days to go!

The World Cup begins in 26 days, and if you plan to go and don't have your visa yet, you better go get one ASAP! Read here about the frustrations of World Cup fans who are overflowing the Miami Brazilian consulate.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Klinsmann on Jozy, Wondo

World Cup Countdown: 27 Days!

The US team opened training camp in Palo Alto, Calif., on Wednesday, and players have been warned that this will be a tense, grueling few weeks. Coach Jurgen Klinsmann must cut his roster from 30 players to 23 before June 2.

Here is what he had to say on Chris Wondolowski:

We believe that Wondo absolutely deserves to be part of the 30-man roster. He knows it’s a big opportunity and a big chance for him to make his case now in the next three weeks to become part of the 23-man roster. His personality, he doesn’t have to change anything. Every time he comes to the National Team environment, he gives you everything he has. He always goes 1000 percent. He knows he’s getting evaluated by the coaches and what he’s doing day in, day out. He personally doesn’t have to do anything different in how he has done things over the last year that we’ve worked with him, and he came quite a way. He came from a position in which over a longer stretch he hadn’t scored for the National Team, to his first goal then, and into more goals during the Gold Cup and now the last goal he scored against Mexico. He built his own case and he built it stronger and stronger. We’re looking forward to working with Wondo because it’s always a pleasure to have him in camp. He is a competitor. He is determined. You give him a one percent chance and he wants to make it 100 percent at the end of the day. He will be one of those drivers going into the next couple of weeks.”

And here are Klinsmann's thoughts on Jozy Altidore...

“I think it’s very important that you understand the phase a player is in right now, as of today. What phase of his career he’s in, what he’s learned so far throughout his career, and what he’s able then to do in the future time. Jozy is still a very young player and he is going into his learning curve. We have worked with him now over the last three years, and he’s gone from a much younger player into a more mature player, playing very good games for us and scoring important goals for us. Still, we see Jozy in his development phase. Jozy is not built yet. Jozy has not reached his potential yet. Our job, as coaches, is to help him reach his highest potential. I think the next two months will be a big part of that next learning curve for Jozy Altidore. I’ve always said that he has upside; he hasn’t shown it yet in different places maybe. I think we saw last summer a big part of that upside in the World Cup Qualifiers and in some friendlies as well. We coaches are looking forward to having him in camp and having our influence into the next step and we believe that Jozy can play a very big World Cup. Obviously he has to work the next couple of weeks to confirm our trust, which we think he will absolutely do. But I think he is still a player to be developed; he is not there yet.”

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Is Brazil ready to welcome the world? Find out here.

World Cup Countdown: 30 Days!

Read the latest on Brazil's World Cup preparations..what's ready, what's not, what tourists should expect.

Spain's jaw-dropping provisional World Cup roster

30 Days to the World Cup!

 

Spain released its 30-man provisional World Cup roster and it is basically an all-star team. Take a look at the clubs these players represent: 7 from Barcelona, 4 from Real Madrid, 4 from Atletico Madrid, 3 from Manchester City, 2 each from Chelsea ManU Napoli and Bayern Munich, and then 1 each from Juventus, Bilbao, Arsenal and Sevilla.

And to think that seven of those players won't make the cut! Those seven players who get cut would start for just about any other World Cup team. Who would you cut?

 

SPAIN

GOALKEEPERS: Iker Casillas (Real Madrid), Pepe Reina (Napoli), David de Gea (Manchester United)

DEFENDERS: Juanfran Torres (Atletico Madrid), Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea), Jordi Alba (Barcelona), Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid), Gerard Pique (Barcelona), Raul Albiol (Napoli), Javi Martinez (Bayern Munich), Alberto Moreno (Sevilla), Dani Carvajal (Real Madrid)

MIDFIELDERS: Sergio Busquets (Barcelona), Xabi Alonso (Real Madrid), Xavi Hernandez (Barcelona), Koke (Atletico Madrid), Thiago Alcantara (Bayern Munich), Jesus Navas (Manchester City), David Silva (Manchester City), Andres Iniesta (Barcelona), Santi Cazorla (Arsenal), Ander Iturraspe (Athletic Bilbao), Juan Mata (Manchester United)

FORWARDS: Cesc Fabregas (Barcelona), Pedro Rodriguez (Barcelona), Alvaro Negredo (Manchester City), Diego Costa (Atletico Madrid), David Villa (Atletico Madrid), Fernando Torres (Chelsea), Fernando Llorente (Juventus)