Total 90: American Football News For Sept. 11
Welcome to the latest edition of what was formerly the MLS News Roundup. This edition and future columns with have an expanded focus on Americans abroad, while still retaining its primary focus on MLS news.
Team USA! USA! USA! wore its goalscoring boots to its latest World Cup qualifier against Trinidad & Tobago. Goals from Michael Bradley, Clint Dempsey and Brian Ching ensured that the Americans would be going home with three points after their first ever match in Chicago's Toyota Park.
Bradley slotted home a Landon Donovan free kick in the ninth minute, and the US never looked back. Brian Ching almost immediately made it two-nil, but his shot from close range was right at the T&T keeper.
Clint Dempsey scored soon after the Ching miss to make it 2-0. Ching finally did find the back of the net in the 57th minute to finish the scoring. The win, couple with a victory over Cuba on the weekend, gives the US nine points from their first three games in this qualifying round. Barring a catastrophic collapse, the US will be moving on to the final CONCACAF qualifying round.
For a great article on the US vs. Cuba match, check out this gem from Stephen Catanese.
Former MLS star and current Villareal youngster Jozy Altidore netted a hat trick in some of his first extended action in Spain.
Altidore was given a start in a friendly against semi-pro club San Rafael because many of the first choice lineup were away on international duty. Altidore rewarded the coach's decision by scoring three goals in the 7-1 victory.
Granted, the match was a friendly and not against top flight Spanish competition, but hat trick is a hat trick. A few more performances like this and Altidore may find himself as a regular in US coach Bob Bradley's international squads.
Thomas Leemon gives a good recap here.
The Los Angeles Galaxy have begun to turn things around under new coach Bruce Arena, scoring points in each of their last two matches.
LA drew 2-2 against the New England Revolution and again versus Real Salt Lake. They didn't bring home the maximum three points in either game, but they got something out of contests against two teams that will probably make the postseason. At this point, LA needs to take anything positive home from their matches.
What makes the Real Salt Lake match impressive is that LA was without three of their best players. Landon Donovan, David Beckham and Eddie Lewis were all absent due to international duty. LA still found a way to score goals and earn a valuable point thanks to Edson Buddle and rookie Bryan Jordan.
Lastly, a note about 9/11. The New England Revolution will be auctioning off game-worn jerseys from their 9/11 matchup against Chivas USA to benefit the Massachusetts Military Heroes Fund. You can find details here.
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