MLS 2020: A Quarter Century of Soccer

Titans Bastard

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Now Anthony Fontana scored to make it 4-1. With Matt Real's assist earlier, another good night for the Union youth movement.

As I type, Ilsinho/Fontana/Aaronson somehow combine to not score a fifth.
 

Titans Bastard

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The Dynamo confirm the sale of Alberth Elis to Boavista. He's in the last year of his contract and from reports is going at a price that could be an absolute steal. Hope Houston's sell-on clause is a decent percent!

It's an example of an MLS club's non-mastery of the art of "when to sell". To be fair, onerous and complicated MLS salary budget regulations make constant wheeling-and-dealing difficult.

View: https://twitter.com/HoustonDynamo/status/1308059318860820481
 

67YAZ

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Holy hell. Just flipped on the Fire...Houston is in a very bad way.

Let’s go for 6 to honor Gale Sayers.

 

OCST

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The 718

Aaronson to RB Salzburg is at the handshake stage.

I've watched the Union a couple of times recently. This kid might be special. He looks completely unassuming physically, but has boatloads of quality. He's fast and he has a real nose for goal - he hangs just on the CB's shoulder and sprints for goal every time the Union win the ball. Love watching him, hope he realizes his potential.
 

MetSox1

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Aaronson to RB Salzburg is at the handshake stage.

I've watched the Union a couple of times recently. This kid might be special. He looks completely unassuming physically, but has boatloads of quality. He's fast and he has a real nose for goal - he hangs just on the CB's shoulder and sprints for goal every time the Union win the ball. Love watching him, hope he realizes his potential.
U STH here... Watching him grow has been fun. Initially very frustrating last year as he would get blown off the ball so easily. He could outduel a defender and make the turn, but maybe couldn't buy the time to get the shot off. He clearly hit the weights a bit this offseason (still plenty of work to be done there) but has really come into his own this year. At his age, the room for development is still there, and the way he is moving on the curve is just exciting.
 

Titans Bastard

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U STH here... Watching him grow has been fun. Initially very frustrating last year as he would get blown off the ball so easily. He could outduel a defender and make the turn, but maybe couldn't buy the time to get the shot off. He clearly hit the weights a bit this offseason (still plenty of work to be done there) but has really come into his own this year. At his age, the room for development is still there, and the way he is moving on the curve is just exciting.
He comes across in interviews as a kid with a really good head on his shoulders, too. As time has passed, I've placed more weight on stuff like that than I once did. I don't actually have data to prove it, but the guys who are clearly dialed in, mature, and professional seem to pan out much more often than the kids who are total space cadets, or who just seem kind of dumb.
 

Titans Bastard

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Positive tests from FC Cincinnati (player) and the Colorado Rapids (one player and three staff) confirmed today.

Colorado vs. KC has been postponed. Cincinnati's game has not yet been postponed, nor has the Philadelphia game (the FCC player played against the Union).


It appears that NYRB are in the process of hiring Gerhard Struber away from Barnsley. I see from his resumé that he has a lot of connections to Red Bull, namely a long history at Red Bull Salzburg.

 

67YAZ

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Fire rack up consecutive wins. The way this squad has punched down lately is somewhat relieving. They’re not THAT bad. Just growing into something better, right?

Gaston Gimenez has been putting in performances as of late, too. Here he is doing exactly what we were told he as going to do - be a bulldog defensively, carry the ball, and deliver the key pass.

 

Titans Bastard

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This is how you celebrate a stoppage time winner after you've given up 32 goals in the last nine games (including 4-1, 5-1, 7-1, 6-1, and 5-0 losses). LAFC have had a few wins in the last month, but don't look anything close to what they were in 2019. It's not just the injury to Carlos Vela; the whole team is just off.

View: https://twitter.com/MLS/status/1310437960278585345



Also, another loss for LA Galaxy, who are struggling again after a brief renaissance of results. Chicharito has been totally useless so far, and while this sort of stat can be coincidental and misleading, they've been way more successful when he hasn't been on the field.

Toronto's victory over Columbus closes the gap at the top of the Supporters Shield race (which will be HIGHLY asterisked this year). Both Toronto and Philly are now within two points of the Crew.
 

Pesky Pole

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Titans Bastard

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Higuain had that “I was told this was a retirement league” look in his eye all night long. Union made the game a bit chippy and Matuidi and others were off as a result. It also helped the Union that the game was played in a downpour.
From the perspective of aging superstars, the level of MLS is low enough that they can continue to be highly productive into the late years of their career, but high enough that they'll flop if they don't take it seriously.

It's fun when you get to see great players be great players....but there's also a huge sense of schadenfreude when players try to big-time the league and end up being huge busts.

Anyway, welcome to the league Gonzalo. It can be a tough league to adjust to for any outsider regardless of his renown simply because of the travel and the wide variety of weather conditions (but especially the heat). The breakneck speed of the calendar right now is making it even tougher.
 

Titans Bastard

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Positive tests from FC Cincinnati (player) and the Colorado Rapids (one player and three staff) confirmed today.
The Rapids have a bona fide COVID cluster right now — up to 11 individuals (but only two players so far). That's a pretty big headache, and with the incubation period what it is, we could get more positive tests despite the fact that everyone is in isolation.

 

MetSox1

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Union have played more road games then home games, more games against the top teams than the bottom... The league let Higuain play last night without going thru the "mandatory" quarantine as well. Still, they are at 2 ppg with a +13 goal differential. For a team that is usually a deserved doormat based on their spending and ownership, its getting very hard not to take them seriously. As a usually cynical fan of the team, this is really strange. And yes, its an asterisk type of year, but they are earning it and its nice to get excited about something that doesn't seem at all flukey at this point.
 

steeplechase3k

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Not good news out of Colorado:
View: https://twitter.com/MLS_PR/status/1310718300968677376


Major League Soccer today confirmed that one additional Colorado Rapids player and seven more members of the club’s staff received confirmed positive tests for COVID-19. Today’s announcement follows the postponement of the Sept. 27 match between Colorado and Sporting Kansas City to allow for additional testing due to confirmed COVID-19 positive cases within the Rapids organization.
Colorado is supposed to play the Timbers on Saturday, I REALLY hope it is cancelled/rescheduled.
 

67YAZ

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Ooofffff. That was an ugly mistake by Montreal. And appropriately punished by Beric.
 

67YAZ

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Ugh, and Shuttleworth gives it back by leaving a juicy rebound right in front of net. Goalkeepers Union and all that, I suppose.
 

Titans Bastard

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Toronto are playing their home games at Rentschler Field in East Hartford, and the stadium staff is playing "Brass Bonanza" every time they score.
 

67YAZ

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Finally finished up the second half. Upside - the Fire fought back to get the point, making it three unbeaten in a row. Downside - Calvo signed a 1yr extension.
 

Titans Bastard

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It appears that NYRB are in the process of hiring Gerhard Struber away from Barnsley. I see from his resumé that he has a lot of connections to Red Bull, namely a long history at Red Bull Salzburg.

Now official:

 

67YAZ

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Chicago-KC soon to kick off. The Fire are without Gaston Gimenez, who got an international call up. That’s tough because Gimenez has started playing at the level everyone hoped when the transfer was made - hard nosed in the tackle, willing to dribble at a guy, progressive and rangy in his passing. Since the restart, he’s been the guy making the counter attack go. Bronico steps in to the DM slot next to Medran. Going to be very interesting....
 

67YAZ

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Another PK saved. Wicky has got it get the boys to practice some spot kicks. What the hell.
 

67YAZ

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Caught up after the debate. Ugh. Aliseda is about a foot shorter than Reid, so the blame falls with whoever drew up that marking plan.

No creativity going forward. They really missed Gimenez there playing through the middle and none of the wide players stepped up to provide attacking thrust. An overall limp performance, gotta find something while Gimenez is away. This would be a great time for Djordje to step it up.
 

Titans Bastard

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They finally did it. Olsen has survived the axe so many times, in part because he's a club legend, and in part because the lack of investment from DCU ownership at times over the years let him off the hook.

DCU have problems beyond Ben Olsen's managerial skills, but at this point the best-case scenario for him seems to be to grind into a first-round playoff loss while playing ugly soccer. It's time to move on.

DCU have some very young, but talented players in their squad from their academy, with hopefully more to come. I think every MLS club should be looking at managers who have the willingness and ability to trust and coach up young players as part of their skillset.
 

Titans Bastard

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COVID problems at several clubs:

  • Colorado had one more player test positive, and yet another of their matches has been postponed
  • Columbus' game is postponed due to two positives among staff
  • Minnesota's game is postponed due to two positives among players.

Colorado's squad has been in isolation for long enough that they should be on the home stretch. Hopefully for their sake, this isn't the beginning of a larger outbreak with the other two teams.
 

Titans Bastard

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Montreal sells Saphir Taïder to Al-Ain. He's the third MLS player to be sold to a Saudi club this year. Unload those overly large salaries, baby.

 

Cellar-Door

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That's why I only watch the EPL, where there are never any VAR controversies.
fair, but good god that is by any standards egregious. Like that's not a fractional offside, or the dumb handball rule. That is a clear foul on the keeper, arguably a red, that not only isn't called, but the goal was disallowed.
 

Pesky Pole

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Speaking of VAR, here was the match changing handball on Bedoya. This rule needs some help in the offseason. Unless players can retract their arms inside their bodies, I don't know what else they are supposed to do. Fortunately for the Union, McKenzie hit a late rocket to at least earn the point.

 

Arroyo Con Frijoles

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I have slowly become almost totally anti-replay in every sport, but last night's Revolution game featured the reason it exists. Goal called off for offside, scorer was probably two yards on because of a lazy run out by an uninvolved defender after a corner. Quick, easy, egregiously bad call, simple. But that's the rare one.
 

67YAZ

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Missed the Fire match today, but happy that Djordje could rescue a point at the death. He's played better lately, and the Fire really need him to realize his potential if they are going to make a leap next season.