The first returns on Thursday's blockbuster trades, a title favorite continuing to underachieve and more from Week 11 in MLS:
Five thoughts and observations from a special Saturday in MLS ...
From stunning results in Los Angeles and Kansas City to what's becoming the norm in Toronto, here are five thoughts from Saturday's MLS action:
From Sporting Kansas City's fifth win to Montreal's first, here are five thoughts from Saturday's MLS action:
Soccer superstar David Beckham tells CNN's Paul Vercammen about his desire for more MLS success with LA Galaxy.
David Beckham turns 37 later this year and wants to cap his stellar career by helping Los Angeles Galaxy become the dominant force in Major League Soccer.
With the 2012 MLS season nearly upon us, it's time to look into our crystal ball and project the next nine months of action. What do we see? Despite plenty of non-playoff teams making vast roster improvements that should lead to as entertaining a season as the league has seen, expect more of the same in terms of final outcome in 2012:
Just as it was last season, the MLS West appears to be the healthier of the two conferences, containing the past three MLS Cup champions:
David Beckham claims his first MLS Cup to end his landmark five-year contract with the Los Angeles Galaxy.
Soccer superstar David Beckham has re-signed with the Los Angeles Galaxy, extending his stay with the team for another two years, the Major League Soccer team announced Wednesday.
Even though more and more Major League Soccer teams are going the route of finding young, affordable foreign talent or looking within their own academy systems to address needs and fill out their rosters, the MLS SuperDraft (Jan. 12, Noon ET) is still a tremendous resource for clubs to use to their advantage.
On Oct. 14, a few weeks before the Los Angeles Galaxy marched to the MLS Cup title, I sat down for a chat with Tim Leiweke, the president of AEG, which owns the Galaxy. Leiweke is the man who brought David Beckham to L.A., and the topic soon turned to whether Beckham would extend his expiring Galaxy contract or move on to a team in Europe. Leiweke is known for being a big talker on occasion -- this is a guy who predicted MLS would be a top-four "and hopefully top-two or -three" U.S. league by 2015 -- but even I was surprised by how confident he sounded that day.
Former England captain David Beckham insists he has yet to decide on his future after winning the Major League Soccer title for the first time on Sunday in what is expected to be his last game for Los Angeles Galaxy.
The Los Angeles Galaxy beat the Houston Dynamo 1-0 in the Major League Soccer final Sunday, in what could be David Beckham's last significant game on U.S. soil.
LOS ANGELES -- Three thoughts on the Los Angeles Galaxy's 1-0 win over the Houston Dynamo in the MLS Cup final:
Will this weekend's MLS Cup final at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. end in glory for David Beckham as his L.A. Galaxy take on massive underdogs, the Houston Dynamo.
Five years after arriving in Los Angeles, superstar David Beckham is proud of the part he has played in developing American soccer.
LOS ANGELES -- It's a question worth posing: If the Los Angeles Galaxy win Sunday's MLS Cup final (9 p.m. ET, ESPN, Galavisión), should L.A. be considered the best team in MLS' 16-year history?
CARSON, Calif. -- David Beckham's potential MLS curtain call could also become the Los Angeles Galaxy's shining moment.
Los Angeles Galaxy reached Major League Soccer's (MLS) championship match on Sunday after a 3-1 defeat of Real Salt Lake in the Western Conference final.
English footballer David Beckham talks about giving back and the run up to the London Olympics.
Five thoughts on the MLS Cup playoffs as we head into Sunday's league semis: Kansas City vs. Houston (5:30 p.m. ET, Fox Soccer) and Los Angeles-Salt Lake (9 p.m. ET, ESPN):
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things we learned from four weekend playoff matches:
It was only a year ago that MLS HQ execs rubbed their hands in glee that Los Angeles and New York were the top seeds in the MLS Cup playoffs and on a collision course to meet in a star-studded, TV-ratings-boosted MLS Cup final. Both teams spit the bit, though, failing to make the title game.
Playoffs begin quickly for teams in Major League Soccer's new wild-card round; the postseason opener is Wednesday. The favorites (Los Angeles foremost, followed closely by Seattle) join this weekend. Every side has Nov. 20 circled on the calendar, date of the MLS Cup final at the Home Depot Center outside Los Angeles. Here, then, is a team-by-team look at the 10 playoff qualifiers. (Listed in order of total points.)
HARRISON, N.J. -- There was a cool moment at Red Bull Arena on Tuesday night. In the second half of New York's 2-0 win against Los Angeles, David Beckham readied for a free kick near midfield by tossing the ball forward a couple yards. His old pal Thierry Henry noticed and pushed the ball back a few feet toward Beckham. Then Beckham got one of those sour, competitive looks on his face, the same look he probably flashed when he was eight years old.
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things we learned from Week 27:
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things we learned from Week 26:
In the summer of 1999, the editors of Sports Illustrated gave me one of those awkward, but secretly fun assignments: Spend some time with the fans and leaders of "the worst pro team in America," the New York/New Jersey MetroStars, and produce a story about it. Writing about a laughably bad sports franchise is like reading a well-done review of an awful movie. There's a guilty pleasure involved, and the MetroStars fans I spoke to didn't disappoint, showing the gallows humor of the long-suffering supporter who knew that someday all the pain would be worth it.
From Robbie Keane's debut to the evolving playoff picture, here are five thoughts from this weekend's MLS action:
The 'Bag (soccer version) is back, and we'll start this week with a question from @WillEhrenfeld: "Will Robbie Keane be an effective scorer for L.A.? And does his addition make the Galaxy clear favorites going forward?"
Five things we learned from Week 17:
Round 17 in Major League Soccer is under way, which means the league rounds the halfway point this weekend. That's a fine time to start tracking league awards. Clearly, lots can change between now and November, but here's how races are shaping up for now.
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things we learned from Week 15:
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things you should know about Week 13:
From the highly anticipated SuperClasico to a case of déjà vu in Seattle, here are five thoughts from Saturday's MLS action ...
Five things you should know about Week 8 in MLS:
From a national perspective the next two Saturdays are big for MLS and ESPN television, which are pinning high expectations on a pair of marquee rivalry games: this Saturday's Los Angeles-New York showdown (11 p.m. ET, ESPN2, ESPN Deportes) and the following Saturday's first MLS edition of the Seattle-Portland Flannel Hatefest (11 p.m. ET, ESPN2, ESPN Deportes).
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things you should know about Week 7:
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things you should know about Week 4:
From Charlie Davies earning a late controversial penalty against Los Angeles to Philadelphia's victory over New York in a battle of Eastern Conference powers, here are five quick thoughts from Saturday's early MLS action:
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things you should know about Week 2:
Just as was the case last season, the West in MLS appears to be the stronger of the two conferences. Not only does it contain the presence of the past two MLS Cup champions (Real Salt Lake in 2009 and Colorado in 2010), it also has the past two runner-ups in the Galaxy and FC Dallas. This season's addition of expansion franchises Portland and Vancouver add even more intrigue to the West as their heated Northwest soccer rivalry with Seattle will resume.
With the cancellation of Wednesday's friendly between the U.S. and Egypt in Cairo, it's an unplanned slow day in the world of American soccer. So let's open the mailbag and answer some of your questions:
BALTIMORE -- The University of Akron's romp to the NCAA men's soccer national championship was just the first chapter in the legacy for coach Caleb Porter's 2010 squad. With a record seven players taken in the MLS SuperDraft on Thursday, the 2010 Zips could potentially supply the strongest haul of talent by one college program in a single draft.
David Beckham has started just 16 MLS regular-season games for the Los Angeles Galaxy over the last two years. Chew on that for a bit, remembering that we are discussing Major League Soccer's highest salaried hotshot. Now set it aside; we'll get back to it in a minute.
You know who plays for your favorite MLS team, right? Not so fast there; you might want to check that roster. And check it again tomorrow, too, because it just might have changed overnight.
After a rather inactive first stage of the Major League Soccer Re-entry Draft, front-office executives rolled up their sleeves and resumed wheeling-and-dealing season in lightning-quick fashion.
Los Angeles Galaxy's David Beckham suffered a groin injury on a miserable night for Bruce Arena's team, as they were beaten 3-0 by FC Dallas in Major League Soccer's (MLS) Western Conference final on Sunday.
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things we learned from Week 25:
Lots to talk about in this week's 'Bag, so let's get it started ...
Five things we learned over two legs of the first round of the MLS playoffs:
The two-leg, aggregate-goal first round of the MLS playoffs continues this week after a 2-2 split between home-field wins and losses. Here's a look at the storylines for each series entering the second leg:
Know your MLS -- Five things we learned from the opening legs of the MLS playoff series:
Taking a look at the first round of the MLS playoffs, which begin this week:
David Beckham is focused on reaching the MLS Cup final again after helping the Los Angeles Galaxy to claim the Major League Soccer Supporters' Shield for the third time in the American club's history.
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things we learned from Week 26:
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things to take away from Week 22:
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things to take away from Week 20:
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things to take away from Week 21:
Pele isn't dancing at Studio 54. The Cosmos aren't the night-life kings of New York. But suddenly pro soccer is starting to look a lot like 1977, with Major League Soccer morphing into the NASL.
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things to take away from Week 18:
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things to take away from Week 11:
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things to take away from Week 10:
When an excerpt from Grant Wahl's book, The Beckham Experiment, appeared in Sports Illustrated last year, it exposed a rift between David Beckham and Los Angeles Galaxy teammate Landon Donovan. In a new afterword for the paperback edition of the book, Wahl examines how Beckham and Donovan moved past the controversy.
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things to take away from Week 8:
Know your MLS -- Five things to take away from Week 6
The Beckhams also say they love L.A. and aren't returning to England anytime soon
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things to take away from Week 4:
Know your Major League Soccer -- Five things to take away from Week 3:
The deciders around Major League Soccer started kicking around a bold plan a few months ago. They were in Seattle for the MLS Cup title match and were smitten by the buzz. This wasn't just strong Seattle coffee at work, either. The match and MLS soccer had a real presence in the city.
Hoping that Thierry Henry joins the New York Red Bulls? Or that the Los Angeles Galaxy might add a third international star to go next to Landon Donovan and David Beckham? Friday's news in Major League Soccer made those possibilities more likely to happen.
Don't let the Galaxy's loss of David Beckham to injury and Houston's pair of personnel defections fool you: The MLS West is slightly dented but hardly hobbled by these high-profile losses. In fact, the West may well be the stronger conference. Real Salt Lake and Los Angeles finished 2009 atop the heap. (RSL claimed the title over L.A. last November.) Seattle seems ready to build on its splendid expansion season, with no evidence of a sophomore slump on the radar. Dallas finished 2009 on a big upswing and Colorado appears to have its most solid core of personnel in years. Houston? Yeah, two huge figures are gone, but you short-sell the Dynamo at your own risk. So, who do you like to finish on top? Not so easy, is it?
There's plenty on the MLS plate this January, with negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement slogging along and teams preparing for the MLS Player Combine that begins this weekend, and the SuperDraft to be hosted by expansion entry Philadelphia Jan. 14.
During MLS Cup week in Seattle, much off-field buzz swirled about a possible Landon Donovan move to Europe, as if the Los Angeles Galaxy captain heading overseas in January during the next European transfer window was not only a foregone conclusion, but the best thing he could do at this point in his career.
No team wins an MLS Cup without players cast off, dropped or ignored by other teams, and the 2009 champions are no exception. Several important contributors to Real Salt Lake's MLS Cup title arrived in Utah from other teams, and controversy accompanied a few of them -- most notably captain Kyle Beckerman, who was swapped by Colorado for Mehdi Ballouchy in July '07, not long after Jason Kreis had taken over the coaching duties at RSL from John Ellinger.
Real Salt Lake sealed an upset win over the Los Angeles Galaxy on Sunday night with a 5-4 penalty victory, after extra-time in the Major League Soccer Cup final that ended with the score at 1-1.
Real Salt Lake win MLS Cup in a penalty shoot-out with Los Angeles Galaxy. CNN's Richard Roth reports
CARSON, Calif. -- When the Los Angeles Galaxy needed a deciding goal last Friday to send them to a sixth MLS Cup final appearance, neither of the team's biggest stars -- David Beckham nor Landon Donovan -- scored the winner in overtime against Houston.
Patrick Snell goes one-on-one with soccer star David Beckham ahead of the MLS Cup final.
David Beckham has pledged his future to the Los Angeles Galaxy and says that victory in Sunday's MLS Cup final against Real Salt Lake would rank alongside other career achievements such as winning the Champions League with Manchester United.
SEATTLE -- Still dubious David Beckham is making an impact in this country? More than 40,000 tickets have been sold for Sunday's MLS Cup final between the Los Angeles Galaxy and Real Salt Lake at Qwest Field (8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN, Galavisión), with another 2,000 made available late in the week. That would mark the biggest crowd for MLS' season-capper in seven years and the third-biggest ever for a game not featuring the local team.
SEATTLE -- As the reborn Los Angeles Galaxy prepare to take on Real Salt Lake in the MLS Cup final on Sunday (8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN, Galavisión), I can't help but think back to a scene in Kansas City's Arrowhead Stadium on Sept. 13, 2008.
David Beckham believes the furore that followed his return to the LA Galaxy from his loan spell with AC Milan earlier this year has galvanized the team.
David Beckham's commitments with Los Angeles Galaxy have forced him to withdraw from the England squad to face Brazil in a friendly in Qatar.
Having ties to a rich and powerful foreign club seemed like a built-in advantage for Chivas USA. The ability to acquire and develop young Mexican talent and having strong financial backing seemed like a great opportunity for the Southern California-based team to build a powerhouse in a relatively short amount of time.
With one playoff series underway (Houston and Seattle drew 0-0 Thursday night), we break down the remaining three series, all of which kick off this weekend:
For just the second time in MLS history, a team won the Supporters' Shield while compiling less than 50 points during the regular season. Columbus' 13-7-10 record was good enough to lock down the league's best regular-season record, but such a mark doesn't exactly compare well to previous Supporters' Shield winners.
If you had told me before this past weekend that, of the six teams gunning for the final two MLS playoff spots, Real Salt Lake and New England would emerge as winners, I would've responded, "Yeah, and I have a date lined up with Keira Knightley on Tuesday."
CARSON, Calif. -- The Los Angeles Galaxy weren't celebrating Friday's big victory too much, perhaps taking a cue from their coach, Bruce Arena.
Our weekly dose of Major League Soccer quick takes, plotlines to watch and Power Rankings.
David Beckham has hinted for the first time that he may not see out his lucrative five-year contract with American MLS club Los Angeles Galaxy.
"I would like to think that I can be up there with the best players [in MLS], but who knows? ... That's what I'll be hoping for: not just to be the best player in the league, but to be one of the best teams in the league." -- David Beckham, May 2007
Our weekly dose of Major League Soccer quick takes, plotlines to watch and Power Rankings.
David Beckham's time at the Los Angeles Galaxy continues to grow sour as he was sent off in Saturday's 2-0 Major League Soccer defeat to Seattle Sounders.
The day was Oct. 23, 2008. Los Angeles Galaxy forward Landon Donovan was sitting across from me as we ate lunch at Petros, a yuppified Greek restaurant in Manhattan Beach, Calif. With the cold-blooded confidence of a man who knew exactly what he was saying, Donovan was in the midst of calmly eviscerating his teammate, David Beckham, for what Donovan saw as Beckham's lack of leadership and commitment at the end of the 2008 MLS season.
David Beckham says he is still fully committed to the Los Angeles Galaxy but will not give up on his dream of playing for England in the 2010 World Cup finals in South Africa.
CARSON, Calif. -- Depending on your criteria, this is the second or third attempt to fit David Beckham into a club and league where, for two years, success has eluded everyone involved. The puzzle has proved more complicated than anyone -- perhaps most of all, Beckham himself -- ever expected. Can it finally work?
Monday was the first day David Beckham trained with the Los Angeles Galaxy since leaving on his self-created, long-term loan deal to AC Milan, and already he's playing the victim.
To: David Beckham From: Couch Slouch Re: To live and die in L.A.
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