Monday, October 31, 2016

Hooligan's Wake Up: Mourinho could face more discipline

Yesterday's Scores
Premier League

Everton 2-0 West Ham
(Lukaku 50', Barkley 76')

Southampton 0-2 Chelsea
(Hazard 6', Costa 55')

TSG Hoffenheim 1-0 Hertha Berlin
(Sule 31')

FC Koln 3-0 Hamburg SV
(Modeste 61', 82', 86')

La Liga
Eibar 2-1 Valencia
(Ramis 80', Leon 87')-(Bruno PK 41')

Athletic Bilbao 1-10 Osasuna
(Garcia 28')-(Riera 23')

Real Betis 0-1 Espanyol
(Reyes 62')

Las Palmas 3-3 Celta Vigo
(Bigas 52', Viera PK 66', Prince-Boateng 68')-(Wass 6', Aspas 14', 21')

Serie A
Atalanta 3-0 Genoa
(Kurtic 36', 45+2', Gomez 84')

AC Milan 1-0 US Pescara
(Bonaventura 49')

Crotone 2-0 Chievo Verona
(Trotta PK 45+3', Falcinelli 90+2')

Empoli 0-0 AS Roma

Lazio 2-1 Sassuolo
(Lulic 50', Immobile 55')

Sampdoria 1-0 Inter Milan
(Quagliarella 44')

Ligue 1
Nice 4-1 Nantes
(Cyprien 9', 65', Balotelli 27', Plea 60')-(Sala 47')

Stade Rennes 1-0 Metz
(Said 56')

Olympique Marseille 0-0 Bordeaux

European League Tables

MLS Playoffs- Conference Semi-Finals First Leg
Montreal Impact 1-0 New York Red Bulls
(Mancosu 61')

This critical loss ends the Red Bulls 20 match unbeaten run at the worst possible time. Their failure to squeeze in an away goal will give them an uphill climb for next weekend's return leg at Red Bull Arena. Thankfully for them, they own the best home record in MLS, so asking for a victory there isn't all that much.

LA Galaxy 1-0 Colorado Rapids
(Dos Santos 55')

Toronto FC 2-0 New York City
(Altidore 84', Ricketts 90+2')

Seattle Sounders 3-0 FC Dallas
(Valdez 5-', Lodeiro 55', 58')

Liga MX
Toluca 0-1 Tijuana
(Hauche 72')

Puebla 2-2 Leon
(Navarro 66', Alustiza PK 78')-(Boselli 32', Cano 43')

Jacksonville Armada 3-2 Tampa Bay Rowdies
(Keita 29', Johnson 83', Steinberger 84')-(Vingaard 4', Savage 19')

Rayo OKC 2-1 Indy Eleven
(Velasquez 61', Hernandez 85')-(Paterson PK 52')

The Tampa Bay Rowdies final match before leaving the NASL for the USL resulted in them blowing an early two goal lead. They will join Ottawa Fury in the "third tier" next season. Rayo OKC, meanwhile, has stormed into the playoffs by winning five in a row and going unbeaten in their last ten matches of the year. They will join New York Cosmos, Indy Eleven, and FC Edmonton in the NASL Championship beginning next weekend.

North American League Tables

Jose Mourinho's antics on Saturday are likely drawing the ire of the FA, yet again. Already staring down a fine for comments on officiating, Mourinho getting banished to the stands during the 0-0 draw agaisnt Burnley could add to that charge.  The FA is going to wait for referee Mark Clattenburg's report before taking action, though. He is hoping to avoid a suspension, which is a possibility considering his long record of fines for criticising officials, among other things.

Today's Matches
Premier League
Stoke City v. Swansea City- 4pm- NBCSN

La Liga
Deportivo La Coruna v. Valencia- 3:45pm

Serie A
Udinese v. Torino- 2pm- beIN
Cagliari v. Palermo- 4pm- beIN

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Hooligan's Wake Up: Mourinho banished to stands in Manchester United draw

Yesterday's Scores
Premier League
Sunderland 1-4 Arsenal
(Defoe PK 65')-(Sanchez 19', 78', Giroud 71', 76')

Manchester United 0-0 Burnley

There has been a cycle to the way things go under Jose Mourinho. He has a decent first season when he first shows up, wins a title for his second go, and then goes off the rails in his third season. The last couple weeks may have been an indication that he's skipping those first two steps at Manchester United. With his comments about Anthony Taylor before the Liverpool match a couple weeks ago to yesterday's sending off and being forced to watch the second half from the owner's box in the stands and not attending the postmatch press conference, the appointment of Mourinho at Old Trafford seems to be going better than expected, unless you happen to support Manchester United.

Middlesbrough 2-0 AFC Bournemouth
(Ramirez 39', Downing 56')

Tottenham 1-1 Leicester City
(Janssen PK 44')-(Musa 48')

Watford 1-0 Hull City
(Dawson OG 82')

West Bromwich Albion 0-4 Manchester City
(Aguero 19', 28', Gundogan 79', 90')

Crystal Palace 2-4 Liverpool
(McArthur 18', 33')-(Can 16', Lovren 21', Matip 44', Firmino 71')

Jose Mourinho isn't the only managaer questioning referee appointments, although his concerns might make more sense. Alan Pardew was upset that Andre Marriner worked this match since he awarded Liverpool a stoppage time penalty last season in this fixture. Sounds like sour grapes to me. You cannot expect Professional Game Match Officials Limited, who handle the officiating appointments for Premier League games, to go back and look at every previous match between two sides before making their choices.

FC Augsburg 1-3 Bayern Munich
(Ja-Cheol 67')-(Lewandowski 19', 48', Robben 21')

Mainz 2-0 FC Ingolstadt
(Malli PK 51', Öztunali 85')

SV Darmstadt 98 0-2 RB Leipzig
(Sabitzer 57', 81')

VfL Wolfsburg 1-2 Bayer Leverkusen
(Arnold 37')-(Mehmedi 79', Jedvaj 83')

Werder Bremen 1-3 SC Freiburg
(Garcia 67')-(Philipp 29', Grifo PK 39', Abrashi 75')

Borussia Dortmund 0-0 Schalke 04

La Liga
Sporting Gijon 1-1 Sevilla
(Gomez 20')-(Vietto 4')

Alaves 1-4 Real Madrid
(Deyverson 7')-(Ronaldo PK 17', 33',  88', Morata 84')

Atletico Madrid 4-2 Málaga
(Carrasco 7', 86', Gameiro 24', 44')-(Ramirez 31', Camacho 64')

Barcelona 1-0 Granada
(Rafinha 48')

Serie A
Bologna 0-1 Fiorentina
(Kalinic PK 31')

Juventus 2-1 Napoli
(Bonucci 50', Higuain 70')-(Callejon 54')

It was quite fitting that Gonzalo Higuain bagged the winner against his former side. He scored Serie A record 36 goals for Napoli last season before being sold to Juventus for an Italian record €90 million. 

Ligue 1
Toulouse 1-2 Olympique Lyonnais
(Jullien 26')-(Lacazette PK 15', 52')

AS Nancy Lorraine 2-0 Caen
(Mandanne 6', Diarra 12')

Bastia 0-0 Dijon

Guingamp 1-0 Angers
(De Pauw 78')

Lorient 2-2 Montpellier
(Toure 16', Marveaux 24')-(Camara 45+2', Sanson 69')

St. Etienne 1-1 AS Monaco
(Perrin 18')-(Glik 5')

European League Tables

Liga MX
Chiapas 1-2 Querétaro
(Derley 41')-(Renteria 16', Benitez 90+2')

Morelia 2-1 Necaxa
(Ruidiaz 77', Perez 80')-(Loeschbor OG 58')

UANL 1-1 Monterrey
(Sosa 38')-(Montes 72')

Pachuca 3-2 Atlas
(Botta 25', 55', Urretaviscaya 75')-(Alvarez 15', Barragan 22')

Club America 3-1 Santos
(Romero PK 9', Arroyo 41', Sambueza 64')-(Djanny 33')

Guadalajara 3-2 Cruz Azul
(Zaldívar 10', Bueno 47', Pulido 90+3')-(Toledo 2', Benítez 60')

Ottawa Fury 0-1 Fort Lauderdale Strikers
(Amauri 66')

Puerto Rico FC 2-1 Carolina RailHawks
(Rivera 6', Ramos 42')-(Moses 32')

Minnesota United 0-1 New York Cosmos
(Calvillo 49')

Thus ends the illustrious NASL runs of Ottawa and Minnesota. Both sides will fall in their final "second tier" appearance before they depart for greener financial pastures. The Minnesota loss, in particular, was more damaging as they are now outside of the NASL playoff picture. I doubt they will be that hung up on it, though. They will make the jump to MLS for next season, eliminating any real heartache from this failure. Ottawa will join the USL next year along with Tampa Bay Rowdies, who play their final NASL match this afternoon.

North American League Tables

Gareth Bale has signed a new six year extension with Real Madrid. No wages were announced, but you can bet they are astronomical. The contract does include a whopping include a €500 million release clause. This will keep the Welsh international at the San Bernabeo until 2022, or until someone can offer up a small moon as a transfer fee.

Today's Matches
Premier League
Everton v. West Ham- 9:30am- NBCSN
Southampton v. Chelsea- 12pm- NBC

TSG Hoffenheim v. Hertha Berlin- 10:30am- FS2
FC Koln v. Hamburg SV- 12:30pm- FS1

La Liga
Eibar v. Valencia- 7am
Athletic Bilbao v. Osasuna- 11:15am
Real Betis v. Espanyol- 1:30pm
Las Palmas v. Celta Vigo- 3:45pm

Serie A
Atalanta v. Genoa- 7:30am
AC Milan v. US Pescara- 10am
Crotone v. Chievo Verona- 10am
Empoli v. AS Roma- 10am- beIN
Lazio v. Sassuolo- 10am
Sampdoria v. Inter Milan- 3:45pm

Ligue 1
Nice v. Nantes- 10am
Stade Rennes v. Metz- 12pm
Olympique Marseille v. Bordeaux- 3:45pm

MLS Playoffs- Conference Semi-Finals First Leg
Montreal Impact v. New York Red Bulls- 3pm- ESPN
LA Galaxy v. Colorado Rapids- 5pm- ESPN
Toronto FC v. New York City- 7pm- FS1
Seattle Sounders v. FC Dallas- 9:30pm- FS1

Liga MX
Toluca v. Tijuana- 2pm- Univision Deportes
Puebla v. Leon- 8pm- Univision Deportes

Jacksonville Armada v. Tampa Bay Rowdies- 4pm- CBS Sports Network
Rayo OKC v. Indy Eleven- 7pm- ESPN3

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Hooligan's Wake Up: Mexico to bid for 2026 World Cup

Yesterday's Scores
Borussia Monchengladbach 0-0 Eintracht Frankfurt

La Liga
Leganés 0-2 Real Sociedad
(Jose 29', Prieto 59')

Ligue 1
Lille 01 Paris-Saint Germain
(Cavani 65')

European League Tables

Liga MX
Veracruz 1-4 Pumas UNAM
(Furch 49')-(Gonzalez 29', 90+5', Marinez 52', Fuentes 90+2')

Miami FC 1-0 FC Edmonton
(Martinez 65')

North American League Tables

As has been expected, Mexico is certainly interested in hosting the 2026 World Cup. Mexican Football Federation president Decio de Maria has come out publically stating that his country will bid for hosting rights with or without the United States. There had been talk of a joint bid between the two CONCACAF giants. With Gianni Infantino recently announcing that he wants to expand the competition by as many as 16 teams, a joint bid would make plenty of sense. Mexico probably lacks the infrastructure to handle a greatly expanded tournament, but combined with the USA they certainly would. North America has hosted the World Cup twice. Mexico held the 1986 event and the USA hosted in 1994.

Today's Matches
Premier League
Sunderland v. Arsenal- 7:30am- NBCSN
Manchester United v. Burnley- 10am- NBCSN
Middlesbrough v. AFC Bournemouth- 10am
Tottenham v. Leicester- 10am- CNBC
Watford v. Hull City- 10am
West Bromwich Albion v. Manchester City- 10am
Crystal Palace v. Liverpool- 12:30pm- NBC

FC Augsburg v. Bayern Munich- 9:30am- FS2
Mainz v. FC Ingolstadt- 9:30am
SV Darmstadt 98 v. RB Leipzig- 9:30am
VfL Wolfsburg v. Bayer Leverkusen- 9:30am
Werder Bremen v. SC Freiburg- 9:30am
Borussia Dortmund v. Schalke 04- 12:30pm- FS2

La Liga
Sporting Gijon v. Sevilla- 7am
Alaves v. Real Madrid- 10:15am- beIN
Atletico Madrid v. Málaga- 12:30pm
Barcelona v. Granada- 2:45pm- beIN

Serie A
Bologna v. Fiorentina- 12pm
Juventus v. Napoli- 2:45pm

Ligue 1
Toulouse v. Olympique Lyonnais- 11am
AS Nancy Lorraine v. Caen- 2pm
Bastia v. Dijon- 2pm
Guingamp v. Angers- 2pm
Lorient v. Montpellier- 2pm
St. Etienne v. AS Monaco- 2pm

Liga MX
Chiapas v. Queretaro- 6pm- ESPN Deportes, Univision Deportes
Morelia v. Necaxa- 8pm
UANL v. Monterrey- 8pm- Univision
Pachuca v. Atlas- 8:06pm- NBC Universo
Club America v. Santos- 10pm- UniMas
Guadalajara v. Cruz Azul- 10:06pm- Univision

Ottawa Fury v. Fort Lauderdale Strikers- 2pm
Puerto Rico FC v. Carolina RailHawks- 7:30pm
Minnesota United v. New York Cosmos- 9pm

Friday, October 28, 2016

Hooligan's Wake Up: Seven more arrested in West Ham fan violence

Yesterday's Scores
Serie A
Palermo 1-3 Udinese
(Nestoroski 10')-(Thereau 36', Fofana 74', 79')

MLS Cup Playoffs- Knockout Round
D.C. United 2-4 Montreal Impact
(Neagle 90', Kemp 90+4')-(Ciman 4', Mancosu 43', 59', Piatti 83')

Seattle Sounders 1-0 Sporting Kansas City
(Valdez 88')

West Ham fans have not made a good name for themselves since the move to the London Stadium. Incidents of violence amidst poor play on the field have not attracted any positivity to the club. Even with heightened security, seven more fans were arrested as part of massive hooliganism in the crowd during their EFL Cup victory over Chelsea. Coins, seats, and other objects were hurled around the ground throughout the match. The FA expects to find more fans responsible thanks to security camera footage and expects them to be banned from any stadium for life. The fans are getting so out of control that some are prompting West Ham to play in an empty stadium.

Jose Mourinho's mouth has landed him in trouble yet again. His comments about the choice of Manchester native Anthony Taylor to work United's match against Liverpool have prompted the FA to charge him with misconduct. This is the third tie in the last 12 months (seven or eight of which he wasn't even managing anywhere) thanks to comments towards officiating. No specific punishment was given, and he has until the end of the month to respond to the charges.

Houston Dynamo have decided not to retain interim head coach Wade Barrett, who took over after Owen Coyle left the club to return home to England. They are set to name former Chivas USA boss Wilmer Cabrera as their new leader. Cabrera was the final manager before Chivas USA folded after the 2014 season. That was his only year in charge of the club. He spend 2016 as the coach at Rio Grande Valley, Houston's USL affiliate.

Today's Matches
Borussia Monchengladbach v. Eintracht Frankfurt- 2:30pm- FS2

La Liga
Leganes v. Real Sociedad- 2:45pm

Ligue 1
Lille v. Paris-Saint Germain

Liga MX
Veracruz v. Pumas UNAM

Miami FC v. FC Edmonton- 8pm

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Hooligan's Wake Up: Drogba does not travel to D.C. with Impact

Yesterday's Scores
Southampton 1-0 Sunderland
(Boufal 66')

West Ham 2-1 Chelsea
(Kouyate 11', Fernandes 48')-(Cahill 90+4')

Manchester United 1-0 Manchester City
(Mata 54')

DfB Pokal- Second Round
FC Astoria Walldorf 1-0 SC Darmstadt 98
(Hillenbrand 32')

Hanover 96 6-1 Fortuna Dusseldorf
(Sobiech 5', Klaus 7', 34', Harnik 15', 16', Maier 53')-(Akpoguma 20')

Heidenheimer SV 0-1 VfL Wolfsburg
(Gomez 49')

SpVgg Greuther Fürth 2-1 Mainz
(Sararer 79', Berisha 90')-(Cordoba 68')

Bayern Munich 3-1 FC Augsburg
(Lahm 2', Green 41', Alaba 90+3')-(Dong-Won 68')

Good news for USMNT fans here as Julian Green, in his first competitive start for Bayern Munich, also scored his first competitive goal for the club. He's got a long way to go before he catches Christian Pulisic for best American in Germany, though.

Borussia Dortmund 1-1 Union Berlin (3-0 on penalties)
(Parensen OG 44')-(Skrzybski 81')

FC Koln 2-1 TSG Hoffenheim
(Risse 36', Modeste 91')-(Hubner 8')

Nürnberg 2-3 Schalke 04
(Rahman OG 59', Kempe PK 68')-(Konoplyanka 20', 44', Huntelaar 31')

Copa Del Rey- Round of 32 First Leg
Cultural Leonesa 0-6 Real Madrid
(Zuiverloon OG 6', Asensio 32', 53', Morata 46', 55', Nacho 68')

Serie A
Chievo Verona 1-1 Bologna
(Mbaye OG 70')-(Pulgar 52')

Fiorentina 1-1 Crotone
(Asori 85')-(Falcinelli 20')

Inter Milan 2-1 Torino
(Icardi 35', 88')-(Belotti 63')

Juventus 4-1 Sampdoria
(Mandzukic 4', Chiellini 9', 87' Pjanic 65')-(Schick 57')

Lazio 4-1 Cagliari
(Diao 6', Immobile PK 23', 28', Anderson 79')-(Wallace OG 87')

Napoli 2-0 Empoli
(Mertens 51', Chiriches 81')

Sassuolo 1-3 AS Roma
(Cannavaro 12')-(Dzeko 57', PK 76', Nainggolan 78')

US Pescara 0-1 Atalanta
(Caldera 60')

Interesting note from this final match here in Serie A. The first half of this match in Pescara was halted for a couple minutes as an earthquake shook the Italian peninsula. Tremors from the quake were felt as far away as Rome and Bologna, but this appears to be the only football match affected. Thankfully, there was minimal damage and no deaths reported from the incident.

European League Tables

MLS Cup Playoffs- Knockout Round
Toronto FC 3-1 Philadelphia Union
(Giovinco 15', Osorio 48', Altidore 85')-(Bedoya 73')

LA Galaxy 3-1 Real Salt Lake
(Gordon 14', Boateng 26', 34')-(Plata PK 21')

After Didier Drogba was held out of the squad in Montreal Impact's season finale against Toronto FC, it was thought that he and the Montreal front office had come to an understanding. Apparently, that understanding was that he would not travel to Washington D.C. for the club's playoff game against D.C. United. He has evidently been dealing with a back injury that has kept him from training with the team since the dustup. It certainly looks like his time with the Impact has come to an unceremonious end.

In Saturday's Valencia-Barcelona match, Lionel Messi hit a winning penalty in stoppage time. Valencia's supporters were angry enough to pelt the celebrating Barcelona players with a bottle. For that transgression, Valencia has been fined €1,500. That's chump change to any major football club, but Valencia have ten days to appeal the decision anyway. Barcelona has been warned for... something I guess. I'm not sure what they could have done to prevent the situation other that not scoring a dramatic winner late in a match.

With the completion of today's matches. the draw has been made for the quarterfinal round of the EFL Cup. Six of the eight remaining teams are from the Premier League, with Leeds United and Newcastle from the Championship making up the other spots. There isn't anything juicy like the Manchester Derby from this round, but here are the matches to be played the week of November 28:

Liverpool v. Leeds United
Manchester United v. West Ham United
Hull City v. Newcastle United
Arsenal v. Southampton

Today's Matches
Serie A
Palermo v. Udinese- 2:45pm

MLS Cup Playoffs- Knockout Round
D.C. United v. Montreal Impact- 7:30pm- UniMas
Seattle Sounders v. Sporting Kansas City- 10pm- FS1, UniMas

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Hooligan's Wake Up: Ottawa, Tampa Bay abandon NASL for USL

Yesterday's Scores
Arsenal 2-0 Reading
(Oxlade-Chamberlain 33', 78')

Bristol City 1-2 Hull City
(Tomlin 90+3')-(McGuire 54', Dawson 47')

Leeds United 2-2 Norwich City (3-2 on penalties)
(Antonsson 43', Wood 109')-(Pritchard 14', Oliveira 99')

Liverpool 2-1 Tottenham
(Sturridge 9', 64')-(Jannsen 76')

Newcastle 6-0 Preston North End
(Mitrovic 19', 55', Diame 38', 87', Ritchie 53', Perez 90+1')

DfB Pokal
Dynamo Dresden 0-1 Arminia Bielefeld
(Hemlein 66')

SC Freiburg 3-3 SC Sandhausen (3-4 on penalties)
(Daehli 21', Griffo 76', Petersen 82')-(Kiater 39', Wooten 53', Sukuta-Pasu 64')

Wurzburger Kickers 0-0 TSV 1860 Munich (3-4 on penalties)
Sportfreunde Lotte 2-2 Bayer Leverkusen (4-3 on penalties)
(Hilbert OG 57', Freiberger 105+1')-(Volland 25', 95')
Borussia Monchengladbach 2-0 VfB Stuttgart
(Johnson 31', Stindl 84')
Eintracht Frankfurt 0-0 FC Ingolstadt 04 (4-1 on penalties)

Hallescher FC 0-4 Hamburg SV
(Wood 8', 43', Lasogga 57', Waldschnidt 82')

St. Pauli 0-2 Hertha Berlin
(Weiser 42', Stocker 54')

Serie A
Genoa 3-0 AC Milan
(Ninkovic 11', Kucka OG 80', Pavoletti 86')

The NASL saw some rough news get confirmed today. Ottawa Fury and Tampa Bay Rowdies have officially left the league for the technically lower level USL. Both clubs are hailing this as a positive move, despite it being a demotion to a lower tier. It makes sense, considering the NASL and many of its clubs are in financial trouble. With Minnesota United leaving for MLS next year, the NASL is down three sides for 2018 and only up one with San Francisco Deltas coming in.

A couple Portland Timbers are in trouble with the law. Goalkeeper Jake Gleeson and captain and defender Liam Ridgewell were charged with DUIs on Monday night. Gleeson was involved in a car crash that earned him a reckless driving charge. He subsequently called Ridgewell, who was also drunk, to come pick him up. The cops determined neither should be driving and arrested them. They posted bond and are due back in municipal court in Lake Oswego, Oregon on November 16.

Real and Atletico Madrid were both hit with transfer bans for the illegal signing of youth players and now the Spanish FA is getting punished as well. They have been docked 220,000 Swiss francs and given six months to improve their transfer system. Thanks to Barcelona receiving a similar ban a couple years ago, the three top Spanish clubs have all been found guilty of violating FIFA's strict rules of under-18 players transferring clubs between countries.

Today's Matches
Southampton v. Sunderland- 2:45pm
West Ham v. Chelsea- 2:45pm
Manchester United v. Manchester City- 3pm- beIN

DfB Pokal
FC Astoria Walldorf v. SC Darmstadt 98- 12:30pm
Hanover 96 v. Fortuna Dusseldorf- 12:30pm
Heidenheimer SV v. VfL Wolfsburg- 12:30pm
SpVgg Greuther Furth v. Mainz- 12:30pm
Bayern Munich v. FC Augsburg- 2:45pm
Borussia Dortmund v. Union Berlin- 2:45pm
FC Koln v. TSG Hoffenheim- 2:45pm
Nurnberg v. Schalke 04- 2:45pm

Copa Del Rey
Cultural Leonesa v. Real Madrid- 3pm

Serie A
Chievo Verona v. Bologna- 2:45pm
Fiorentina v. Crotone- 2:45pm
Inter Milan v. Torino- 2:45pm
Juventus v. Sampdoria- 2:45pm
Lazio v. Cagliari- 2:45pm
Napoli v. Empoli- 2:45pm
Sassuolo v. AS Roma- 2:45pm
US Pescara v. Atalanta- 2:45pm

MLS Cup Playoffs- Knockout Round
Toronto FC v. Philadelphia Union- 7:30pm- ESPN2, UniMas
LA Galaxy v. Real Salt Lake- 10:30pm- UniMas

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Hooligan's Wake Up: Ballon d'Or nominees announced

Yesterday's Matches

The nominees for the prestigious Ballon d'Or award were announced yesterday. A total of 30 players made the shortlist, but, in reality, there is only one who truly deserves the honor, Cristiano Ronaldo. Winning the Champions League and leading Portugal to it's first European championship while being one of the most electrifying players on the planet is more than enough to earn him the award for the third time in his life. But, for what it's worth, here's the entire list of players under consideration for the top individual honor the game has to offer:

Sergio Aguero (Manchester City)
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Borussia Dortmund)
Gareth Bale (Real Madrid)
Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus)
Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid)
Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City)
Paulo Dybala (Juventus)
Diego Godin (Atletico Madrid)
Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid)
Gonzalo Higuain (Napoli/Juventus)
Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Paris Saint-Germain/Manchester United)
Andres Iniesta (Barcelona)
Koke (Atletico Madrid)
Toni Kroos (Real Madrid)
Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich)
Hugo Lloris (Tottenham)
Riyad Mahrez (Leicester City)
Lionel Messi (Barcelona)
Luka Modric (Real Madrid)
Thomas Muller (Bayern Munich)
Manuel Neuer (Bayern Munich)
Neymar (Barcelona)
Dimitri Payet (West Ham)
Pepe (Real Madrid)
Paul Pogba (Juventus/Manchester United)
Rui Patricio (Sporting)
Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid)
Luis Suarez (Barcelona)
Jamie Vardy (Leicester City)
Arturo Vidal (Bayern Munich)

In other "Player of the Year" news, Antoine Griezmann has been named La Liga's top player. The Frenchman has been fantastic in the last couple of seasons for Atletico Madrid, having led them to within a penalty shootout of winning the Champions League. His coach, Diego Simeone, won the best coach award and his goalkeeper, Jan Oblak, was honored as the top keeper.

Onward to England, where the FA has struck a new overseas television deal for the FA Cup that's reportedly worth more than $1 billion. They hope to use that money to invest in pitches, facilities, and participation programs to grow the game domestically. 

Tottenham's Moussa Sissoko will sit out three matches after accepting a violent conduct charge for elbowing Bournemouth's Harry Arter on Saturday. He did not see any punishment in the match itself, which ended in a scoreless draw. This suspension will keep him out of the North London Derby against Arsenal on November 6.

In Wednesday's EFL Cup match between West Ham and Chelsea, there will be increased security and an alcohol ban as authorities attempt to curb violence between the two fanbases. There have been many issues with fan violence since West Ham moved to the London Stadium for this season. A total of nine people have been arrested in matchday incidents.

Finally, MLS has set a new average attendance record for a single season. The average MLS match was attended by 21,692 fans, up from the 2015 record of 21,558. This is the third straight season where the league has set a new attendance record. Seattle Sounders led the way with 42,636 fans at the average match, while FC Dallas brought up the rear at 14,094. That number was also the largest decline from last year at 12%, this despite winning the Supporters Shield.

Today's Matches
Arsenal v. Reading- 2:45pm
Bristol City v. Hull City- 2:45pm
Leeds United v. Norwich City- 2:45pm
Liverpool v. Tottenham- 2:45pm
Newcastle v. Preston North End- 2:45pm

DfB Pokal
Dynamo Dresden v. Arminia Bielefeld- 12:30pm
SC Freiburg v. SC Sandhausen- 12:30pm
Wurzburger Kickers v. TSV 1860 Munich- 12:30pm
Borussia Monchengladbach v. VfB Stuttgart- 2:45pm
Eintracht Frankfurt v. FC Ingolstadt 04- 2:45pm
Hallescher FC v. Hamburg SV- 2:45pm
St. Pauli v. Hertha Berlin- 2:45pm

Serie A
Genoa v. AC Milan- 2:45pm

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Hooligan's Wake Up: Iniesta hurt in Barca comeback

Yesterday's Scores
Premier League
AFC Bournemouth 0-0 Tottenham

Arsenal 0-0 Middlesbrough

Burnley 2-1 Everton
(Vokes 39', Arfield 90+2')-(Bolasie 58')

Hull City 0-2 Stoke City
(Shaqiri 26', 50')

Leicester City 3-1 Crystal Palace
(Musa 42', Okazaki 63', Fuchs 80')-(Cabaye 85')

Swansea City 0-0 Watford

West Ham 1-0 Sunderland
(Reid 90+4'

Liverpool 2-1 West Bromwich Albion
(Magee 21', Coutinho 35')-(McCauley 81')

Bayer Leverkusen 0-3 TSG Hoffenheim
(Demirbay 15', Wagner 49', Zuber 60')

FC Ingolstadt 04 3-3 Borussia Dortmund
(Cohen 6', Lezcano 24', 60')-(Aubameyang 59', Ramos 69', Pulisic 90+1')

Hertha Berlin 2-1 FC Koln
(Ibisevic 13', Stark 74')-(Modeste 65')

SC Freiburg 2-1 FC Augsburg
(Philipp 66', Petersen 78')-(Altintop 84')

SC Darmstadt 98 3-1 VfL Wolfsburg
(Ben-Hatira 25', Kleinheisler 69', Sirigu 76')-(Gomez 60')

Bayern Munich 2-0 Borussia Monchengladbach
(Vidal 16', Costa 31')

La Liga
Espanyol 3-3 Eibar
(Perez 64', Piatti 73', Baptistao 90+2')-(Enrich 23', Reyes OG 27', Kike 44')

Valencia 2-3 Barcelona
(El Haddadi 52', Rodrigo 56')-(Messi 22', PK 90+4', Suarez 62')

Real Sociedad 3-0 Alavés
(Prieto 21', Jose 57', Vela 87')

Granada 0-0 Sporting Gijon

Serie A
Sampdoria 2-1 Genoa
(Muriel 12', Izzo OG 47')-(Rigoni 24')

AC Milan 1-0 Juventus
(Locatelli 65')

Ligue 1
Olympique Lyonnais 1-3 Guingamp
(Lacazette PK 37')-(Salibur 46', Coco 52', 77')

Angers 0-0 Toulouse

Bordeaux 1-1 AS Nancy Lorraine
(Menez 55')-(Koura 74')

Dijon 1-0 Lorient
(Loties 90+1')

Lille 2-1 Bastia
(Corchia 51', Eder 57')-(Diallo 71')

Nantes 1-2 Stade Rennes
(Sala 42')-(Grosicki 58', 75')

European League Tables

Liga MX
Cruz Azul 1-2 Puebla
(Ramirez 45')-(Escudero 37', Navarro 90+2')

Monterrey 1-1 Toluca
(Pabon 44')-(Barrientos 30')

Querétaro 1-1 Club America
(Sanvezzo 49')-(Arroyo 50')

Leon 3-1 Morelia
(Boselli PK 45+3', Cano 47', Velarde 49')-(Sansores 85')

Necaxa 3-2 Veracruz
(Puch 7', Espindola 28', Riano 85')-(Lopez 56', Villalva 78')

Fort Lauderdale Strikers 0-2 Rayo OKC
(Ibeagha 50', Pecka 90+4')

New York Cosmos 4-0 Miami FC
(Arrieta 2', Orozco 7', 36', Arango 30')

Carolina RailHawks 1-0 Minnesota United
(Fondy 51')

Indy Eleven 3-0 Puerto Rico FC
(Braun 36', Zayed 45', Mares 45+3')

Tampa Bay Rowdies 1-1 Ottawa Fury
(Hristov 48')-(Tissot 27')

North American League Tables

Barcelona may have scored a comeback victory over Valencia thanks to a Messi penalty at the buzzer, but the win came at a cost. Midfielder Andres Iniesta left on a stretcher with an ugly looking leg injury just 14 minutes into the contest. No word on the exact injury was given, but he could miss the rest of the Champions League group stages.

Today's Matches
Premier League
Manchester City v. Southampton- 8:30am- NBCSN
Chelsea v. Manchester United- 11am- NBCSN

Red Bull Leipzig v. Werder Bremen- 9:30am- FS1
Schalke 04 v. Mainz- 11:30am- FS2

La Liga
Celta Vigo v. Deportivo La Coruna- 6am
Sevilla v. Atletico Madrid- 10:15am
Malaga v. Leganes- 12:30pm
Villarreal v. Las Palmas- 12:30pm
Real Madrid v. Athletic Bilbao- 2:45pm- beIN

Serie A
Udinese v. US Pescara- 6:30am
Atalanta v. Inter Milan- 9am- beIN
Cagliari v. Fiorentina- 9am
Crotone v. Napoli- 9am
Empoli v. Chievo Verona- 9am
Torino v. Lazio- 9am
Bologna v. Sassuolo- 12pm
AS Roma v. Palermo- 2:45pm

Ligue 1
Caen v. St. Etienne- 9am
Metz v. Nice- 11am
Paris-Saint Germain v. Olympique Marseille- 2:45pm

Colorado Rapids v. Houston Dynamo- 4pm
LA Galaxy v. FC Dallas- 4pm- FS1
New England Revolution v. Montreal Impact- 4pm
New York City v. Columbus Crew- 4pm
Orlando City v. D.C. United- 4pm
Philadelphia Union v. New York Red Bulls- 4pm
Seattle Sounders v. Real Salt Lake- 4pm- ESPN
Sporting Kansas City v. San Jose Earthquakes- 4pm
Toronto FC v. Chicago Fire- 4pm
Vancouver Whitecaps v. Portland Timbers- 4pm

Liga MX
Pumas UNAM v. UANL- 1pm- Univision
Santos v. Atlas- 7pm- Univision Deportes
Guadalajara v. Pachuca- 9pm- Univision Deportes

FC Edmonton v. Jacksonville Armada- 4pm- ESPN3

USL Playoffs- Final
New York Red Bulls II v. Swope Park Rangers- 8pm- ESPNU

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Hooligan's Wake Up: Drogba fined for refusal to play

Yesterday's Scores
Hamburg SV 0-3 Eintracht Frankfurt
(Holtby OG 35', Tarashaj 60', Seferovic 69')

La Liga
Osasuna 1-2 Real Betis
(Torres 48')-(Joaquin 19', Gutierrez 90+1')

Ligue 1
AS Monaco 6-2 Montpellier
(Falcao PK 36', Mbappe-Lottin 49', Jemerson 64', Germain 74', Lemar 76', Traore 89')-(Boudebouz 9', PK 61')

European League Tables

Liga MX
Tijuana 2-0 Chiapas
(Caraglio 8', Moreno 81')

North American League Tables

Didier Drogba refused to even sit on the bench after he was not named a starter for Montreal Impact's 2-2 draw agaisnt Toronto FC on Sunday. As a result, he was fined an undisclosed amount for his lack of maturity. Even though the dispute was resolved between him and Impact ownership, MLS ruls still dictated he be fined for his transgression.

Today's Matches
Premier League
AFC Bournemouth v. Tottenham- 7:30am- NBCSN
Arsenal v. Middlesbrough- 10am- NBCSN
Burnley v. Everton- 10am
Hull City v. Stoke City- 10am
Leicester City v. Crystal Palace- 10am
Swansea City v. Watford- 10am- CNBC
West Ham v. Sunderland- 10am
Liverpool v. West Bromwich Albion- 12:30pm- NBC

Bayer Leverkusen v. TSG Hoffenheim- 9:30am
FC Ingolstadt 04 v. Borussia Dortmund- 9:30am- FS2
Hertha Berlin v. FC Koln- 9:30am
SC Freiburg v. FC Augsburg- 9:30am
SC Darmstadt 98 v. VfL Wolfsburg- 9:30am
Bayern Munich v. Borussia Monchengladbach- 12:30pm- FS2

La Liga
Espanyol v. Eibar- 7am
Valencia v. Barcelona- 10:15am- beIN
Real Sociedad v. Alaves- 12:30pm
Granada v. Sporting Gijon- 2:45pm

Serie A
Sampdoria v. Genoa- 12pm
AC Milan v. Juventus- 2:45pm- beIN

Ligue 1
Olympique Lyonnais v. Guingamp- 11am
Angers v. Toulouse- 2pm
Bordeaux v. AS Nancy Lorraine- 2pm
Dijon v. Lorient- 2pm
Lille v. Bastia- 2pm
Nantes v. Stade Rennes- 2pm

Liga MX
Cruz Azul v. Puebla- 6pm- Univision Deportes
Monterrey v. Toluca- 8pm
Querétaro v. Club America- 8pm- Univision Deportes
Leon v. Morelia- 10pm
Necaxa v. Veracruz- 10pm- Univision Deportes

Fort Lauderdale Strikers v. Rayo OKC- 7pm- ESPN3
New York Cosmos v. Miami FC- 7pm- ONE World Sports
Carolina RailHawks v. Minnesota United- 7:30pm- ESPN3
Indy Eleven v. Puerto Rico FC- 7:30pm- ESPN3
Tampa Bay Rowdies v. Ottawa Fury- 7:30pm

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Hooligan's Wake Up: New York an option for UEFA Champions League final

Yesterday's Scores
Europa League
Celta Vigo 2-2 Ajax Amsterdam
(Fontas 29;, Orellana 82')-(Ziyech 22', Younes 71')

Standard Liege 2-2 Panathinaikos
(sa Silva PK 45+1', Belfodil 82')-(Ibarbo 12', 36')

Konyaspor 1-1 Braga
(Milosevic 9')-(Koka 55')

Shakhtar Donetsk 5-0 KAA Gent
(Kovalenko 12', Ferreyra 30', Bernard 46', Taison 75', Malyshev 85')

FC Salzburg 0-1 Nice
(Plea 13')
Krasnodar 0-1 Schalke 04
(Konoplyanka 10')

FK Qarabag 2-0 PAOK Salonika
(Quintana 56', Amirguiliyev 87')

Liberec 1-3 Fiorentina
(Sevcik 58')-(Kalinic 8', 23', Babacar 70')

Hapoel Be'er 0-1 Sparta Prague
(Pulkrab 71')

Inter Milan 1-0 Southampton
(Candreva 67')

Osmanlispor 2-2 Villarreal
(Rusescu 23', 24')-(Ndiaye 55', Patp 74')

Steaua Bucaresti 1-1 FC Zurich
(Golubovic 63')-(Kone 86')

Feyenoord Rotterdam 1-0 FC Zorya Luhansk
(Jorgensen 55')

Manchester United 4-1 Fenerbahce
(Pogba PK 31', 45+1', Martial PK 34', Lindgard 48')-(Van Persie 83')

Olympiakos 4-1 FC Astana
(Figueiras 25', Elyounoussi 33', Seba 34', 65')-(Kabanaga 54')

Young Boys 3-1 Apoel Nicosia
(Hoarau 18', 52', 82')-(Efrem 14')

Mainz 1-1 Anderlecht
(Malli PK 10')-(Teodorczyk 65')

St. Etienne 1-0 FK Qabala
(Ricardinho OG 70')

AZ Alkmaar 1-21 Maccabi Tel-Aviv
(Muhren 72')-(Scarione 24', Golasa 81')

Dundalk 1-2 Zenit St. Petersburg
(Benson 52')-(Mak 71', Giuliano 77')

AS Roma 3-3 Austria Vienna
(El Shaarawy 19', 34', Florenzi 69')-(Holzhauser 16', Prokop 82', Kayode 84')

Viktoria Plzen 1-2 FK Astra Giurgiu
(Hovara 86')-(Alibec 41', Hovara OG 64')

Racing Genk 2-0 Athletic Bilbao
(Brabec 40', Ndidi 83')

Rapid Vienna 1-1 Sassuolo
(Schaub 7')-(Schrammel OG 66')

CONCACAF Champions League
Suchitepequez 2-4 FC Dallas
(Akindele G 5', Morales 22')-(Gruezo 27', Hedges 35, Harris 51', Ruiz OG 87')

Pumas UNAM 8-1 W Connection FC
(Berjon 17', Aguirre 30', 40', Gallardo 5', 71', Niesto 79', Martinez 85', 89')-(Thomas 60')

FC Dallas and Pumas both needed wins to move on and boy did they get them. Their victories mean they join Costa Rica's Deportivo Saprissa, Canada's Vancouver Whitecaps, Panama's Arabe Unido, Mexico's Pachuca and Tigres, and the USA's New York Red Bulls as knockout round pariticipants. The four countries represented in this stage of the tournament is better than last year's MLS vs. Liga MX showdown. In the 2015 knockout stags, five countries were represented.

UEFA is ready to re-open its bidding process for the Champions League final and they are not opposed to leaving Europe. They have come out and said a final staged in New York would not be out of the question. Citing not difficult travel for fans and an opportunity to grow the game abroad, they have not ruled the largest city in America out.

A major reason for West Ham's early season struggles has been injuries to key players, including new signing Andre Ayew and Andy Carroll. The good news is that Ayew is back in training and could return soon. Carroll is still weeks away from making his next appearance, though.

Today's Matches
Hamburg SV v. Eintracht Frankfurt- 2:30pm

La Liga
Osasuna v. Real Betis- 2:45pm

Ligue 1
AS Monaco v. Montpellier- 2:45pm

Liga MX
Tijuana v. Chiapas- 10pm

Hooligan's Wake Up: Man City fails hard on Pep's return to Barcelona

Yesterday's Scores
UEFA Champions League
Arsenal 6-0 Ludogorets Razgrad
(Sanchez 12', Walcott 42', Oxlade-Chamberlain 46', Ozil 56', 83', 87')

Paris-Saint Germain 3-0 FC Basel
(Di Maria 40', Moura 62', Cavani PK 90+3')

Arsenal and PSG are clearly in control here. The Gunners took the top spot on goal difference thanks to their thumping of Ludogorets. The two giants of Group A will meet in the penultimate match day of the Champions League. By then, both should have advanced and the only thing at stake will be the top spot in the group.

Dynamo Kiev 0-2 Benfica
(Salvio PK 9', Cervi 55')

Napoli 2-3 Besiktas
(Mertens 30', Gabbiadini PK 69')-(Adriano 12', Aboubakar 38', 86')

Despite this setback, Napoli are still in the lead of Group B. They will certainly be disappointed in how this one turned out. A home loss to anyone in this group would be considered unfortunate. Thankfully, they are still in the lead at the half way point with Besiktas a point behind them.

Barcelona 4-0 Manchester City
(Messi 17', 61', 69', Neymar 89')

Celtic 0-2 Borussia Monchengladbach
(Stindl 57', Hahn 77')

Things didn't go so well for Pep Guardiola on his return to Camp Nou. His keeper was shown straight red for a blatant hand ball well outside the penalty area after it was already 3-0 with a Messi hat trick. Although Barca would lose a man to a pair of yellows towards the end of the match, by then it was more than over. No matter though, City are still in second place, one point in front of Monchengladbach.

Bayern Munich 4-1 PSV Eindhoven
(Muller 13', Kimmich 21', Lewandowski 59', Robben 84')-(Narsingh 41')

Rostov 0-1 Atletico Madrid
(Carrasco 62')

Atletico barely escaped Russia with a goal to keep their perfect Champions League going. Bayern Munich are in a comfortable second thanks to an easy win at home against their Dutch opponents. The group title will probably be decided when Bayern and Atletico go at it on the final match day of the group stage.

CONCACAF Champions League
Sporting Kansas City 3-1 Central FC
(Porter 49', Selbol 55', Hallisey PK 90+1')-(Gordon 43')

Portland Timbers 1-1 Saprissa
(McInerney 57')-(Blackburn 24')

Olimpia 4-4 Pachuca
(Quioto 32', Johnson 45+2', Costly 81', Mejia PK 90')-(Guzman 13', Jara PK 36', Urretaviscaya 59', Gutierrez 68')

The Timbers become the second MLS team of the year to not make the knockout stages. They needed a win at home against Saprissa to move on. Instead, the draw saw the Costa Rican side though. SKC and Central were both playing for pride as they had both been eliminated coming in. Pachuca loses their pefect record thanks to a wild draw with Olimpia.

Jacksonville Armada 3-2 Miami FC
(Eloundou 1', Dixon 69', Scaglia 74')-(Martinez 27', Farfan 65')

Tampa Bay Rowdies 2-3 Indy Eleven
(Cole 53', 68')-(Lacroix 15', Reynoso 31', Paterson 85')

We've learned the nature of Mauro Diaz's injury. Turns out he had an Achilles problem that required surgery. The FC Dallas winger will miss the entirety of the playoffs thanks to the procedure.He is the team leader with ten assists on the campaign, so he will be missed.

Today's Matches
Europa League
Celta Vigo v. Ajax Amsterdam- 1pm
Standard Liege v. Panathinaikos- 1pm
Konyaspor v. Braga- 1pm
Shakhtar Donetsk v. KAA Gent- 1pm
FC Salzburg v. Nice- 1pm
Krasnodar v. Schalke 04- 1pm- ESPN3, FS2
FK Qarabag v. PAOK Salonika- 1pm
Liberec v. Fiorentina- 1pm- ESPN3
Hapoel Be'er v. Sparta Prague- 1pm
Inter Milan v. Southampton- 1pm- ESPN3, FS1
Osmanlispor v. Villarreal- 1pm
Steaua Bucaresti v. FC Zurich- 1pm
Feyenoord Rotterdam v. FC Zorya Luhansk- 3:05pm
Manchester United v. Fenerbahce- 3:05pm- FS1
Olympiakos v. FC Astana- 3:05pm
Young Boys v. Apoel Nicosia- 3:05pm
Mainz v. Anderlecht- 3:05pm
St. Etienne v. FK Qabala- 3:05pm
AZ Alkmaar v. Maccabi Tel-Aviv- 3:05pm
Dundalk v. Zenit St. Petersburg- 3:05pm
AS Roma v. Austria Vienna- 3:05pm- ESPN3, FS2
Viktoria Plzen v. FK Astra Giurgiu- 3:05pm
Racing Genk v. Athletic Bilbao- 3:05pm- ESPN3
Rapid Vienna v. Sassuolo- 3:05pm- ESPN3

CONCACAF Champions League
Suchitepequez v. FC Dallas- 8pm
Pumas UNAM v. W Connection FC- 10pm