Tag Archives: New England

Soccer Memories, MLS is Back Group Previews, and American Soccer Headlines



Hey, soccer fans! It’s July and the temperature is almost as hot as our takes. In tonight’s episode of The Sons of a Pitch: An American Soccer Podcast, tune in for our takes on:

Soccer Memories

  • From a listener question, our hosts share their favorite soccer memories – from Gold Cups to World Cups and all the MLS games in between.
  • Coincidentally, both Nick and Mike have a great memory of Dwayne DeRosario

MLS is Back Tournament Group Previews

  • Nick and Mike predict Toronto FC to take the group, but who comes in 2nd? New England is on the up, but look out for dark horse DC United
  • Group D is a toss up! Nick likes Sporting KC to finally fulfill their potential, while Mike is buying into what MNUFC is selling. Don’t count our resurgent Colorado or an RSL club that can outplay expectations.

American Soccer Headlines

  • Is Christian Pulisic injury prone? Or is it growing pains? He’s only 21, folks.
  • Do you like “Fighting” Matt Miazga?
  • Where will Cannon and Busio end up?

Tune in for all this and more in tonight’s episode of The Sons of a Pitch: An American Soccer Podcast!

Be sure to subscribe on YouTube to join the next live broadcast and get in on the conversation.

 

 


Team Previews Part 2 – Houston, Montreal, and New England



Hey, soccer fans! We’re back with more team previews. Nick is out sick, so settle in for the smooth sounds of Mike’s voice as he walks you through the Houston Dyanamo, Montreal Impact, and New England Revolution as they prepare for the 2020 Major League Soccer season. For our MLS team previews, we cover players in and out, review the Designated Players (DPs), and predict breakout youngsters in the next generation of MLS talent. We also provide projected Starting XI and predict the floor/ceiling of each team.

Here are the hot takes from this episode:

  • Houston has a potent offense, and the Dynamo will need every goal to try to keep pace with the rest of the West
  • Montreal will need every bit of coaching guile from Thierry Henry, but just doesn’t have the talent to compete with the top of the East
  • The Revolution continues as Bruce Arena has a full off-season to work with New England. Expect to see them compete for a top spot in the East.

Be sure to join the conversation and keep up with our social media:


Signings around the MLS, Thoughts on the CBA, and the Future Structure of the League



Hello once again, soccer fans! Tonight, our hosts answer listener questions on trades and signings from around Major League Soccer (MLS). What are the key points and what makes them different from other American leagues? While they bargaining and goals are the same (get the best players for the best value) there are a lot more bargaining chips in the MLS – TAM, GAM, and international roster spots, to name a few. Also, MLS franchises can scout the entire world for soccer talent, where other American leagues have a much more limited player pool.

Specifically, our hosts address the signings of:

  • Lucas Cavallini, Vancouver Whitecaps
  • Diego Valeri, Portland Timbers
  • Francisco Ginella, Los Angeles FC
  • Adam Buksa, New England Revolution

In the 2nd half of the show, Nick and Mike give their thoughts on the upcoming CBA negotiations and the anticipated issues between the MLSPA and the league. The focus of the negotiations will likely revolve around free agency, salaries, and … chartered flights!? Yes, with increased revenue, the league is going to have a much more difficult time not raising the salary cap, minimum salaries, or allowing chartered flights.

The show wraps up with thoughts on further expansion and what the future structure of the league might look like. With Charlotte being just announced as the MLS’ 30th franchise, the Major League Soccer is at the size of most other American sports leagues, but much larger than any other soccer league in the world. Are they at a breaking point? Or is a restructure on the horizon? Tune in for some scenarios that Nick and Mike think could happen.

Be sure to join the conversation and keep up with our social media:


USMNT Embarrassment and Mediocrity, Nations League, and MLS League Roundup



Hello soccer fans, and welcome back! It’s great to have you as we recap the United States Men’s National Team’s embarrassing performance vs. Mexico and their mediocre outing vs. Uruguay. In the heat of the moment, most USMNT fans were through with the Berhalter experiment and his heavy use of MLS players. However after a 48hr cooling off period, Nick has talked himself off the ledge. Clearly, the USMNT was attempting to develop their new style, and unfortunately Mexico was the perfect team to destroy those attempts. In their next match-up vs. Uruguay, the USMNT controlled more of the game, but still could only muster a single goal. Has progress been made? When will games actually matter to Berhalter and the US Soccer Federation? Tune in to find out.

Next, the hosts give a brief update on what is the CONCACAF Nations League, how it impacts the development of soccer in North and Central America and the Caribbean, and what it means for World Cup Qualifying. We all love meaningful games, but could the new FIFA rankings based system end up hurting countries like the United States and Canada?

Finally, Nick and Mike recap the handful of Major League Soccer (MLS) games that took place this week. NYCFC is the new Eastern Conference leader, and could break their spell of early playoff exits. Meanwhile, Colorado surprises short-handed Seattle, and Portland defeats Sporting KC, despite not getting their share of referee’s whistles. Toronto FC and Orlando City pick up points to help their playoff push, but how will they fare as the season winds down?

All this and more from The Sons of a Pitch: An American Soccer Podcast! Be sure to join the conversation by subscribing to the podcast and joining in on social media.


S2Ep23 – MLS Headlines, Chicago Fire News, and US Open Cup Semi-Finals Previews



Hi soccer fans! We didn’t forget you, we’re just coming at you a day later than usual. Mike was too busy celebrating his birthday with his family. Where are his priorities!?

Now that we’re back, we turn our attention to the latest MLS headlines, with lots of news coming from Chicago … er … I mean, Bridgeview. The Fire have a memo of understanding with the village to terminate their lease. They also traded Mo Adams to Atlanta for $100k in GAM. They pay to move and dump a fan favorite, typical Fire. Elsewhere , New England Revolution’s new DP signing Gustavo Bou has a goal in his debut game. Will this put the Revs into the playoff picture? They still have a long way to go, but this offensive injection certainly helps.

Meanwhile, around the league:

Teams on the Rise

  • Minnesota United FC – 2 wins away from a trophy. What will they do with all this momentum!?
  • San Jose Quakes – They just keep taking points, and a Cali Clasico victory over LA Galaxy is the cherry on top of their recent form

Teams on the Fall

  • Chicago Fire – Last three results: losses to SKC, FCC, and a draw to the Crew. Yet Paunovic and Rodriguez still have jobs.
  • DC United – If they’re not careful. they could be in the bottom of the Eastern Conference playoffs in a hurry.

US Open Cup Predictions
Nick: Portland over Atlanta – These are the two best teams left in the tournament. Atlanta is playing the best, and Portland has all the goal-scoring power needed to keep pace with the Five Stripes.

Mike: Minnesota over Atlanta – The Loons continue their fine form, keep up momentum, and on the backs of some stellar individual performances, bring home their first trophy.


Week 11 Roundup: Zlatan’s Trash Talk, SKC/Revs Shootout, and What’s Wrong with the East?



Welcome back, soccer fans! Thanks for returning to the Sons of a Pitch: An American Soccer Podcast for all your Major League Soccer news. In this episode, the hosts recap Week 11 and all the goals, drama, and story-lines that accompanied it. Tune in for:

  • Houston and Dallas keep taking points
  • LAFC – Seattle rematch not live up to the hype
  • Zlatan’s talking trash and the league is letting him

The hosts also discuss what’s going on in the Eastern Conference. With no team looking like a favorite, the conference is up for grabs. Listen to Nick and Mike break down how:

  • Columbus is slumping, Chicago is under-performing
  • Atlanta is the most talented team, but only on paper
  • DC can’t string together wins
  • Is TFC the favorite? Based on PPG, they sure are

And to round out the discussion, we take a glimpse at the newly formed Canadian Premier League (CPL). With seven teams in Canada’s top flight, Mike discusses the influence of Toronto on the league and the league’s focus on developing young, Canadian talent. Nick is optimistic about the experience coaches, organizations, and owners will get and how they can apply that to the future of soccer in North America.

Finally, the hosts gives some early US Open Cup picks. The US Open Cup gets underway next week, and while MLS teams are favored to win (Mike likes Seattle, Nick likes Houston or Sporting KC), don’t be surprised is USL Championship sides like Louisville City or Saint Louis FC make a run.

 

Thanks again for listening, and be sure to join the conversation on twitter @SOPSoccer or in the comments below!


USMNT Friendlies vs. Ecuador and Chile and MLS Week 4 Roundup



Hello again, soccer fans! We hope you enjoyed the USMNT action to offset the short MLS schedule this weekend. We at the Sons of a Pitch certainly enjoyed seeing all the names and faces of the future of US Soccer this week.

In their 3rd game under coach Gregg Berhalter, the United States Men’s National Team played a controlling game against Ecuador, but only had a 1-0 victory to show for it. In the next game against Chile, the USMNT had a difficult time beating the high press and were on the back-foot most of the game. Despite that, they held on for a 1-1 draw. Our biggest takeaways are the continued implementation of Coach GGG’s system and the integration of the European based players, and the building of a winning culture. We really say was Adams, McKennie, and Pulisic can do together, but we also saw the flaws in letting wing-backs push too far up the field.

Rising Stock: Zardes-1 goal, 1 assist in last 2 games; Trapp-the smartest guy on the field;

Falling Stock: Baird-who was non-existent; Lovitz-who looked lost; Ream-who still makes that one, dumb play every game

Meanwhile in a less than full slate of Major League Soccer games, the headlines could read:

  • FC Dallas keeps taking points
  • Orlando City finally get a win
  • LAFC get another stoppage time victory – this time courtesy of some Walker Zimmerman brilliance
  • FC Cincinnati win again, turning critics into bandwagon fans
  • At least one New England is terrible: the Revolution are in complete disarray

Thanks for listening, and be sure to join the conversation in the comments below or on twitter @SOPSoccer.


Sapong, CCL, and More 2019 Team Previews



Hello soccer fans! We are back with a full hour of MLS and CCL news and entertainment (Nick even works in a Robert Kraft joke amidst his usual puns). With so much going on around Major League Soccer, we dive right in: CJ Sapong was traded to Chicago and no one is impressed. Real Salt Lake signs USL player Portillo to add depth to their midfield, and FC Cincinnati introduces their new mascot – Gary the Lion – who is the soccer equivalent of a scary clown.

Next, our hosts recap the 1st leg of the Concacaf Champions League. Toronto FC falls flat against Panamanian side Independiente for the second time, Atlanta gets upset by Herediano of Costa Rica, but Sporting Kansas City, Houston Dynamo, and Red Bulls New York all come away with wins. Nick still thinks RBNY will be the first MLS team to win the tournament, but Sporting KC may have the easiest path to the finals.

Mike and Nick also continue their MLS 2019 Team Previews. In this episode, they break down the roster moves and potential for New England Revolution, New York City FC, Red Bulls New York, Philadelphia Union, and the Portland Timbers. These teams span from league cellar-dwellers to MLS Cup Contenders, but all have entertaining story lines to follow as the season gets underway.

Finally, we want to put in a plug for new friend of the show Christopher Sweeney. This author recently released Mad Dog Gravesen: The Last of the Modern Footballing Mavericks, about the footballing spectacle that was Thomas Gravesen. Order online if you’re a fan of European football or great soccer stories.

Thanks for listening, and please join the conversation on twitter @SOPSoccer or on facebook @sonsofapitchsoccer. Stay tuned for our final team preview episode later this week, but in the meantime, enjoy all the soccer action!