Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Hooligan's Daily: FIFA dismisses ethics chiefs responsible for Blatter takedown

Yesterday's Scores
UEFA Champions league- Semi-Finals Second Leg
Juventus 2-1 AS Monaco (4-1 on aggregate)
(Mandzukic 33', Alves 44')-(Mbappe 69')

US Open Cup- First Round
Red Force 2-4 South Florida Surf

The 2017 U.S. Open Cup begins in earnest today after this light South Floridian appetizer. Detroit City may not be in the competition for the first time since 2013, but their three straight years in the first round of the competition was enough to endear myself to the oldest soccer tournament in the country. Amateur clubs are hitting the pitch this round with the winners moving on to take on the low level pro teams of the NASL and USL.

Since a lot of these clubs are more or less a step above the beer league team I play for every Sunday, I am not going to take the time and effort to track down every single goal scorer. Even the biggest of the die hards don't know half the clubs playing today, let alone the players playing for them, Plus, it's tough to find somewhere with all the goal scorers for such small clubs and I don't have the energy to track them down, so just the scorelines will have to do.

Headlines
The FIIFA congress in Bahrain has announced a couple big news stories so far. The first is that they will not retain ethics committee leaders Hans-Joachim Eckert and Cornel Borbely. These two men were instrumental in getting Sepp Blatter and other corrupt officials banned from the game and now they are being told to scuttle off. The dismissed ethics chiefs claim this is the end of FIFA's reform process and I claim that this means FIFA still has a lot of scum floating around and they don't want anyone with a history of busting big wigs around to catch them. Call me a cynic, but I can't imagine FIFA has cleared out the entire swath of organized criminals poisoning their organization.

Not that Eckert and Borbely were perfect, by any stretch. Their whitewashing of Michael Garcia's corruption report is a particular black stain on their records. But firing the watchmen in charge of keeping everything on the straight and narrow is not exactly what FIFA needs right now, or ever.

The ethics committee still exists without them. Colombian prosecutor Maria Claudia Rojas and Greek judge Vassilios Skouris will take over for them. Let's hope they are more than stooges appointed by the powers the be in FIFA, assigned to look like they are doing their jobs while actually letting all the scum float on by.

The other big story relates to the 2026 World Cup, which the USA has asked for an expedited selection process for. FIFA hasn't given them that quite yet. They are giving any rival bids three months to materialize before simply handing the tournament over to North America. August 11 will be the deadline for other nations to step forward, but none are expected to truly derail the American effort to host their first World Cup since 1994. Morocco has been mentioned as a possibility, either alone or combined with other west African nations, but I can't imagine they would unseat the heavily favored USA-Mexico-Canada triad.

In more potentially scummy news, FIFA is investigating fees paid out from Paul Pogba's record transfer to Manchester United. Pogba's agent, Mino Raiola, appears to have made quite a chunk of change on the deal, which is the center of the investigation.

Today's Matches
UEFA Champions league- Semi-Finals Second Leg
Atletico Madrid v. Real Madrid- 2:45pm- FS1

Premier League
Arsenal v. Southampton- 2:45pm- NBCSN

MLS
Columbus Crew v. Toronto FC- 7:30pm

Liga MX Playoffs- Quarterfinals First Leg
UANL v. Monterrey- 8:30pm
Santos v. Toluca- 10:30pm

U.S. Open Cup- First Round
Fredericksburg FC  v. Christos FC- 5pm
Atlanta Silverbacks  v. SC United Bantams- 5pm
El Farolito v. Burlingame Dragons FC- 6pm
Western Mass Pioneers  v. Boston City FC- 7pm
New Jersey Copa FC  v. FC Motown- 7pm
Charlotte Eagles  v. Chattanooga FC- 7pm
Carolina Dynamo  v. Legacy 76- 7pm
Miami United FC  v. Boca Raton Football Club- 7pm
Jacksonville Armada U-23  v. The Villages SC- 7pm
Ocean City Nor'easters  v. Junior Lone Star FC- 7:30pm
Reading United AC  v. Clarkstown SC Eagles- 7:30pm
Michigan Bucks  v. AFC Ann Arbor- 7:30pm
Derby City Rovers  v. Tartan Devils Oak Avalon- 7:30pm
GPS Portland Phoenix  v. GPS Omens- 8pm
Chicago FC United  v. Grand Rapids FC- 8pm
Dutch Lions FC  v. NTX Rayados- 8pm
FC Wichita  v. Azteca FC- 8pm
Des Moines Menace  v. AFC Cleveland- 8:30pm
Tulsa Athletic  v. Oklahoma City Energy U23- 8:30pm
FC Tucson  v. Colorado Rush- 9:30pm
Sonoma County Sol  v. Anahuac FC- 10pm
Albion SC Pros  v. Chula Vista FC- 10pm
FC Golden State Force  v. Outbreak FC- 10pm
Fresno Fuego  v. La Máquina FC- 10pm
Ventura County Fusion  v. Moreno Valley Fútbol Club- 10pm
OSA FC  v. Sounders FC U-23- 10:30pm
L.A. Wolves FC  v. San Diego Zest- 10:30pm

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