Monday, November 14, 2016

Hooligan's Wake Up: Howard out for 'months'

Yesterday's Scores
World Cup Qualifying- UEFA
Bulgaria 1-0 Belarus
(Popov 10')

Luxembourg 1-3 Netherlands
(Chanot PK 44')-(Robben 36', Depay 58', 84')

France is still leading the way in Group A despite the Netherlands closing the gap here. The Dutch are still three points back of the leaders and level with Sweden through four matches. Bulgaria, with their win over Belarus, are on six points and one back of that second play playoff position.

Hungary 4-0 Andorra
(Gera 33', Lang 43', Gyurcso 73', Szalai 88')

Switzerland 2-0 Faroe Islands
(Derdiyok 27', Lichtsteiner 83')

Portugal 4-1 Latvia
(Ronaldo PK 28', 85', Carvalho 69', Alves 90+2')-(Zjuznis 67')

Switzerland continues their perfect start to lead Group B through four rounds of play. Euro 2016 champions Portugal are three points behind them with nine. The only loss of the campaign for the Portuguese was against the Swiss. Hungary is also in the hunt with seven points after their thrashing of Andorra.

Cyprus 3-1 Gibraltar
(Konstantinos 28', Soteriou 65', Sielis 87')-(Casciaro 51')

Belgium 8-1 Estonia
(Meunier 8', Mertens 16', 67', Hazard 25', Carrasco 62', Klavan OG 64', Lukaku 83', 88')-(Anier 29')
Greece 1-1 Bosnia and Herzegovina
(Tzavellas 90+5')-(Pjanic 32')

Nobody is catching Belgium in Group H. Their perfect 12 points come along with a +20 goal differential as they are sure to cruise to Russia. Greece currently holds the playoff spot with ten points. They are yet to play Belgium and will do so in March. Their draw with Bosnia and Herzegovina is the first time they've dropped points. Speaking of Bosnia and Herzegovina, they are in third with seven points and still alive for second place.

World Cup Qualifying- CAF
Egypt 2-0 Ghana
(Salah PK 43', El Said 86')

Egypt is now two for two to open the final stage of African qualifying. They are two points ahead of their group, which contains the likes of African giants Ghana.

Guinea 1-2 Congo DR
(Soumah 23')-(Kebano 54', Bolasie 56')

The Democratic Republic of Congo takes this win to go level with Tunisia ahead of Group A. Those two are yet to play each other in the tournament.

NASL- The Championship
New York Cosmos 0-0 Indy Eleven (4-2 in penalties)

The New York Cosmos have now won the NASL overall title two years in a row and for the third time in the last four seasons. The NASL may be a financial disaster at the moment with high profile teams bolting for the USL, but at least they have a very successful team this people can develop some hate for.

Headlines
The USMNT and Colorado Rapids got some sour news regarding Tim Howard. The goalkeeper is looking at a months long recovery timetable, which will keep him out of the remainder of the MLS Cup Playoffs. Howard's injury is a right abductor strain that he suffered taking a goal kick against Mexico on Friday night. He may even need surgery to repair the injury, which could delay the start of his Rapids preseason and keep him out of USMNT January camp.

Steven Gerrard has hinted at leaving LA Galaxy over the offseason. The English midfielder posted on his Instagram account that he will miss LA. He joined MLS last summer after he concluded the Premier League season with Liverpool. He isn't likely to retire. Word on the street is that he has interest from clubs in the UK, including Newcastle and Glasgow Celtic.

England interim manager Gareth Southgate is hoping to hear about his future as the leader of the national team within the next month. His interim tag only lasted until the end of this international break and he wants the job full time. He is the favorite to land the job and the FA will hopefully decide his fate before too long.

Today's Match
World Cup Qualifying- OFC
New Caledonia v. New Zealand- 1am Tuesday

50,000 Words of Soccer Update
This Wake Up and preview of  matchday two of the Hex aat Last Word on Soccer brings the word count to 21,712.

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