Category: MLS

Patrick Vieira: NYCFC can overcome big deficit against Columbus Crew


Taylor Twellman sings the praises of Crew SC after their rout of NYCFC, but explains why the tie is far from over.
Columbus Crew SC took a giant step toward the Eastern Conference Final, routing NYCFC at home amid possible relocation.

New York City FC coach Patrick Vieira has urged his players to believe they can recover from a 4-1 Eastern Conference semifinal deficit against Columbus Crew.

No Major League Soccer side has bounced back from a three-goal deficit to progress, but Vieira said his team could become the first to do so in the second leg on Sunday.

Speaking to the official MLS website, the former Arsenal midfielder said: “There’s always a first time. It may be Sunday, it may be next year.

“This is a difficult task, there’s no doubt about it.”

Vieira said his side had been guilty of missing too many chances in the first leg even though he had expected them to concede to Columbus.

“We created enough chances to score more than one goal and we didn’t do it,” he added.

“You expect to concede because of the team and the players they have on the squad. But I think we gave them a good game — we created enough chances that we didn’t take.”

Columbus coach Gregg Berhalter has said his side will not sit on their lead, but Vieira predicted that the visitors “are going to be sitting and waiting and go into the counterattack because they have the players to do it.”

The coach said he had shown his players a video of their 4-1 win over Sunday’s opponents last season, adding: “We have to build the belief that we can do it.

“The way we play the game, of course, we can concede as well. But we can score a lot of goals.”

Follow @ESPNFC on Twitter to keep up with the latest football updates.

Detroit MLS group scraps plan for new stadium, will use Ford Field


Major League Soccer has come a long way from 10 teams that started in 1996 to the 22 that kicked off the 2017 season.
Brian McBride gives a glowing recommendation for Sacramento to join MLS, but questions why the expansion has been delayed.

The group leading Detroit’s MLS expansion bid announced on Wednesday that it is bringing in the Ford family as co-owners, and that it will use NFL venue Ford Field as its home stadium.

The move comes as a surprise given that Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert, and Detroit Pistons owner Tom Gores — who continue to lead the expansion effort — had pushed for a $1 billion development project that involved building a 23,000-seat stadium.

That deal involved building the venue at Gratiot Avenue, where a half-built jail currently sits, and building the jail at another location. The stadium component of that deal is now off the table, with the proposed team now set to play at the Detroit Lions’ Ford Field.

MLS is slated to select its next two expansion teams from a list of 12 candidates in mid-December. They will begin play in 2020. Two more will be chosen at a date to be determined, with those teams set to begin play in 2022.

“Partnering with the Ford family bolsters our powerhouse group and provides a perfect stadium solution in the heart of Detroit’s central business and sports and entertainment districts,” said Detroit Pistons vice chairman Arn Tellem, who is coordinating the ownership group’s expansion effort.

“Over the last two years, we have invested significant time, effort and resources into our bid to bring MLS to Detroit. After careful study and analysis, we concluded that the downtown location of an MLS stadium is paramount to an MLS team’s success.”

The group leading Detroit’s MLS expansion bid had previously pushed for a $1 billion development project.

MLS has long stressed that teams needed to be in their own, smaller-sized stadiums in order to capture the different revenue streams that a stadium produces. But the sight of teams like the Seattle Sounders and Atlanta United thriving in NFL stadiums appears to have altered the Detroit ownership group’s thinking.

The group said Ford Field could be configured to accommodate crowds between 26,000 and 64,000.

“No MLS stadium sits in a better downtown location than Ford Field,” said Tellem. “We also saw additional evidence that multi-use stadiums can be very successful in the right situation and we believe our new proposal is superior for the city and for MLS in every way.”

In terms of which cities will be selected in 2020, Detroit was viewed to be in a leading group of four cities that includes Sacramento, Nashville and Cincinnati. The impact that the addition of the Ford family to the ownership group, as well as settling on Ford Field as its home venue, remains to be seen.

MLS appeared to offer a lukewarm response to Detroit’s announcement.

Rock Ventures Principal Matt Cullen, who has been leading the stadium plan for the Detroit MLS bid, said that while the original focus was on developing a new stadium on Gratiot Avenue, the analysis of Ford Field led the group to conclude it was a better option.

“From the time we started working on the Gratiot site, we have always been focused on the importance of a great mixed-use development at the gateway to downtown Detroit, soccer was just a potential component of our vision,” said Mr. Cullen. “But once we better understood Ford Field’s unique attributes, including the recent renovations and a bowl design that is perfectly suited for soccer, we decided to change course.

“We have made clear to the county that we are still fully committed to moving forward with our proposal to build out a new criminal justice complex on Warren and I-75. We are also fully committed to a mixed-use development on the Gratiot site that will be an economic driver for our community.”

Jeff Carlisle covers MLS and the U.S. national team for ESPN FC. Follow him on Twitter @JeffreyCarlisle.

Jozy Altidore: Red Bulls fan questioned my patriotism and religion


The FC guys believe fans went too far in their criticism of Jozy Altidore and Michael Bradley at Red Bull Arena.
A Giovinco free kick sealed a first-leg win for Toronto FC on the road against New York in the Eastern Conference semifinal.
Max and Herc discuss the evolution of Jozy Altidore and Michael Bradley as potential villains with Toronto FC in MLS.

Jozy Altidore says a New York Red Bulls fan told him he doesn’t “deserve to be in this country” and questioned his patriotism and religion during last week’s MLS playoff game.

Altidore and his Toronto FC teammate Michael Bradley were the targets of extended periods of explicit chants at Red Bull Arena on Monday, leading the striker to call the fans of his former club “classless.”

Defending his comments to the Toronto Sun, Altidore said one fan crossed the line by telling him to put his hand over his heart and sing along during the U.S. national anthem.

Altidore, raised as a Jehovah’s Witness who abstains from saluting flags on religious grounds, has stood silently with his hands behind his back during the anthem throughout his career.

“My comment about Red Bulls fans being ‘classless’ was because of the stuff that had nothing to do with soccer,” Altidore said. “My mother raised us as Jehovah’s Witness, and there were comments being said that my beliefs have no place in this country. It’s ridiculous.

“Coming off the field — with Tosaint Ricketts and Raheem Edwards as my witness — there’s a [fan] standing a foot away from me telling me I have no idea what it’s like to represent this country, that I didn’t die for this country and I don’t deserve to be in this country because I don’t put my hand on my heart and that I don’t sing [the Star-Spangled Banner].”

Jozy Altidore mockingly applauded the Red Bulls fans who taunted him last week.

As leading figures on the United States national team that failed to qualify for the World Cup last month, Altidore and Bradley were also the target of some criticism in a game in Atlanta two weeks ago. Altidore, though, said he accepts the jeers until they become personal.

“I have no issue with the booing and you feeling that myself and Michael and others are responsible for not qualifying for the World Cup. You’re right,” Altidore said.

“There are many people that have different beliefs about politics about what the anthem means. It doesn’t mean they care any less about the country. That’s what I meant by ‘classless.’

“It wasn’t the ‘f— you, Jozy.’ It wasn’t the ‘f— you, Mike.’ I have no problem with that. The booing me as a player, I have no issue. But when you start to attack people in different ways when it comes to religion or patriotism, that’s what I meant by ‘classless.'”

Toronto FC coach Greg Vanney said he wrote a letter to Major League Soccer about the issue and was waiting for a response.

“He’s telling him what to do,” Vanney said of the fan. “You don’t tell people what to do. It’s none of that guy’s business. There’s no rule that says you have to put your hand over your heart.”

Follow @ESPNFC on Twitter to keep up with the latest football updates.

WATCH: Altidore justified for calling out 'classless' fans


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Did Seattle's Nouhou deserve a penalty?


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West Ham United

Liverpool

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Stoke City

Leicester City

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AFC Bournemouth

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Barcelona

Sevilla FC

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Deportivo La Coruña

Atletico Madrid

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Borussia Dortmund

Bayern Munich

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Angers

Paris Saint-Germain

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5

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St Johnstone

Celtic

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Rangers

Partick Thistle

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