Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Hooligan's Wake Up: Arena officially named Klinsmann's successor

Yesterday's Scores
UEFA Champions League
CSKA Moscow 1-1 Beyer Leverkusen
(Natcho PK 75')-(Volland 16')

AS Monaco 2-1 Tottenham
(Sidibe 48', Lemar 53')-(Kane PK 52')

Bayer Leverkusen and AS Monaco clinch spots in the round of 16 with these results. Tottenham's first season of Champions League will now result in nothing more than a Europa League appearance.

Borussia Dortmund 8-4 Legia Warsaw
(Kagawa 17', 18', Sahin 20', Dembele 29', Reus 32', 52', 90+2', Passlack 81')-(Pirjovic 10', 24', Kucharczyk 57', Nikolic 83')

Sporting CP 1-2 Real Madrid
(Silva PK 80')-(Varane 29', Benzema 87')

Borussia Dortmund and Legia Warsaw decided to play a game of FIFA 17 on amateur difficulty in order to set a record for most goals in a Champions League game. The win Dortmund's spot in the knockout rounds and sets up a matchup with Real Madrid in December fit the top spot in the group.

FC Copenhagen 0-0 FC Porto

Leicester City 2-1 Club Brugge
(Okazaki 5', Mahrez PK 30')-(Izquierdo 52')

Leicester City may not be doing well in the Premier League, but their Champions League campaign is going wonderfully.  They will take the top spot in Group F with this win. Porto will need another point to join them after this lackluster showing in Denmark.  They will host host Foxes on December 7 too close the group stage.

Dinamo Zagreb 0-1 Olympique Lyonnais
(Lacazette 72')

Sevilla 1-3 Juventus
(Pareja 9')-(Marchisio PK 45+2', Bonucci 84', Mandzukic 90+4')

Juventus with advance with this win and Sevilla is likely to join them in spite of this setback. The only thing that would keep then out would be a two goal defeat against Olympique Lyonnais in a couple weeks. If that does happen. Lyon will go through instead.

Champions League Tables

MLS Cup Playoffs- Conference Final First Leg
Montreal Impact 3-2 Toronto FC
(Oduro 10', Mancosu 12', Oyongo 53')-(Altidore 68', Bradley 73')

Montreal looked to be rolling with a 3-0 lead until they fell asleep defensively and allowed Toronto to snag a couple away goals. Those could be the difference as Toronto is sure to come out attacking in the home leg at what is sure to be a cold and blustery BMO Field next Tuesday night. Here's my full match recap on Last Word on Soccer.

Seattle Sounders 2-1 Colorado Rapids
(Morris 20', Lodeiro PK 61')-(Doyle 13')

Kevin Doyle's deflected goal will loom large despite the Seattle win. At this point a signature Rapids 1-0 home win would be enough to sent them through to MLS Cup.

Headlines
As expected, Bruce Arena has been naked huge USMNT's next head coach. The now former LA Galaxy boss ran the team from 1998 to 2006. His rub included a trip to the World Cup quarterfinals in 2002 and a group stage without a victory four years later. He's going to begin his second tenure in charge of the squad with a hole to dig out of in World Cup Qualifying. They are in last place on the Hex with zero points through two matches. 

This is a fairly safe choice. Arena is probably the greatest American soccer mind in history and should bring some stability to team selection and tactics. His comments about dual nationals raise some questions, but I think he would be dumb to end the national team careers of Fabian Johnson, John Brooks, and other foreign born players just because they don't fit in with his overly ideal vision of what the team should be.

His first duty will be setting up January camp and getting a team ready to face Honduras and Panama in the next batch of World Cup Qualifying matches in March.

Today's Matches
UEFA Champions League
Rosov v. Bayern Munich- 12pm- FS1
Besiktas v. Benfica- 12:45pm
Arsenal v. Paris-Saint Germain- 2:45pm- FS1
Ludogorets Razgrad v. FC Basel- 2:45pm- ESPN3
Napoli v. Dinamo Kiev- 2:45pm
Borussia Monchengladbach v. Manchester City- 2:45pm
Celtic v. Barcelona- 2:45pm- FS2
Atletico Madrid v. PSV Eindhoven- 2:45pm

Liga MX Playoffs- Quarterfinals First Leg
Leon v.Tijuana- 8:30pm- Univision Deportes
Pumas UNAM v. UANL- 10:30pm- Univision Deportes

50,000 Words of Soccer Update
These past two days have been some of the busier news days in the soccer world thanks to the USMNT coaching shakeup. I wrote another pro/rel piece, the news of Arena's hiring, and the Montreal-Toronto recap linked above at Last Word on Soccer. The word count stands at 38,239, which has me well ahead of pace to reach 50,000 words by the months end. This is very good, since the Thanksgiving holiday is probably going to slow me down a bit.

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