Another day, another CCL win for the Sounders. Seattle scored thrice in the 3-1 win over Caledonia, providing the squad with a stranglehold on Group 4 of the Champions League. Around the rest of the CCL, Toronto was in a relatable position, losing 3-1 to Santos Laguna. Los Angeles hosted the Puerto Rico Islanders and took advantage of home pitch with a 4-0 pantsing. The Houston Dynamo were paired with Honduran side Olimpia and will return home with a 1-1 draw. If all of this is confusing, ProSoccerTalk has a far more manageable solution.
Before we get to the rest of the league, Matt Doyle has an excellent video about the slip pass, which Seattle took full advantage of in their Saturday win over Chivas USA. For anyone still working on their tactical understanding of soccer (like myself) this is required watching.
The MLS coaching situation has been interesting for a number of teams. Three clubs have already made changes in the middle of the campaign. The big news of the week has been the choice of Akron skipper Caleb Porter, but on Thursday the Philadelphia Union lifted the interim tag from John Hackworth's job title. Hackworth will now become the long term coach for the Union after they parted ways with Peter Nowak. Ben Olsen at DC United found himself within a consonant of being fired as the league fined him for lambasting the officials of his squad's 1-1 draw with Philadelphia.
There had been talk about Chicago's Marco Pappa moving on from the league in the near future, but as it turns out, the future is now; Pappa has already flown off to SC Heerenveen of Holland. Lessening the blow is Alvaro Fernandez' return from injury a few weeks ago, but Chicago now has nine matches left in the season to hold off a strong push from streaking Columbus and expansion side Montreal for the final playoff spot in the east.
Down in LA, Chivas USA has found two of its owners bought out, leaving Chivas de Guadalajara as the sole owners of the MLS club. At first I read it backwards, as in Guadalajara had no remaining stake in the team. And I was excited, because the team would likely be rebranded in that scenario. Alas, we now just have to hope that either the increased control will lead to better things for the club, or that they are consolidating ownership to sell in a package to someone who will bring success. The new full owners have reportedly fired GM Jose Domene.
Concussions haven't been nearly the problem in Soccer as they have been in more violent sports like American Football or Rugby. But MLS has begun to take better care with concussed players, and for good reason; the NFL stands to lose billions of dollars to former players in injury settlements (oh, and the well-being of the players is important as well). We may be getting the first whiff of a similar situation in MLS with the suit of D.C. United and their former coach (now in Vancouver) Tom Soehn by former player Bryan Namoff.
In better news out of DC, Dwayne DeRosario is working on triple digits in MLS scoring after putting what was supposed to be the winning goal through in the 68' against New York. (NY would later tie the game in the 88'). The goal puts DeRosario one net behind Taylor Twellmen's 101 for 6th all time in MLS scoring, the second-highest active total behind Landon Donovan's 124. Edson Buddle is currently 8th with 92.
It's hard to continue to call Chivas a defense-first team when they have given up nine goals in two matches. In their midweek fixture versus New England, Chivas went behind 3-0 on a pair of Saer Sene goals (and an own goal) before Sharlie Joseph rallied against his old team with a brace. Young Equadorian Miller Bolanos sealed the comeback with the tying goal.
To cap the midweek action, Columbus edged out the Philadelphia Union with a 95' minute road goal for the 2-1 win. As hot as the Crew have been for the last few weeks, that's how cold the Union have been, without a win since the end of July. Calls are coming out once again for Freddy Adu to contribute more, but there might not be anything left to give.
After two straight Cascadia Cup loses, Whitecaps nation is scrambling to figure out what's wrong. The departure of Davide Chiumiento (SPELLED IT RIGHT THE FIRST TIME) has become something of a focal point, leading to this article from EightySixForever. Fun fact: over the last two months, the Whitecaps have given up goals on more than HALF of shots on target.
Everyone knows that MLS 20 will be the New York Cosmos. The land is purchased, the franchise is being groomed. It's just a matter of time. Everyone knows this, except for the city of Orlando, Florida, which is still fighting the good fight to see MLS return to the Sunshine State. The Orlando City Lions and their president, Phil Rawlins, feel they are far along in getting approval for a 20,000 seat soccer-specific stadium within the next year. The goal, as Rawlins says, is to "get up there and rival the L.A. Galaxy, Seattle, New York, as being one of the top four or five franchises in the MLS.''
If you're going to talk about elite franchises, you might need to include Real Salt Lake, who over the last four years have been more successful on the pitch and in the stands than even the aforementioned New York club.
In case you were wondering, Bob Bradley's doing fine by the way. Jeffery Plunkett is doing a documentary n Bradley's time in Egypt, and the unique role he is playing for the Egyptian National Team, as well as the role the National Team is playing in that country's revolution.
No 90 Plus this week, at least not yet.