The Seattle Sounders and the Los Angeles Galaxy headlined the opener Tuesday night on ESPN in a highly anticipated first match up between the western conference rivals. The Galaxy was forced to tweak their line up for the match due to various reasons. Juan Pablo Angel missed the match due to illness whereas Omar Gonzalez and Donovan Ricketts were both out due to a right shoulder sprain and hamstring injury respectively. The Galaxy took their season opener with a 1-0 win thanks to a goal from Juninho at the 58th minute mark. Chris Birchall and David Beckham of the Galaxy were booked for misconduct during the match as were Erik Friberg and Leo Gonzalez of the Sounders.
Saturday was full of soccer action with eight matches throughout the night.
The Vancouver Whitecaps FC and Toronto FC went head to head and a total of six goals were scored between the two clubs! Vancouver came out on top 4 -2 thanks to goals from Eric Hassli (contributed 2 goals), Terry Dunfield, and Atiba Harris. Dwayne De Rosario and Maicon Santos would go on to give Toronto their two goals. Misconduct bookings were handed out to Vancouver’s Terry Dunfield, Atiba Harris, and Eric Hassli as well as Toronto’s Nathan Sturgis, and Dan Gargan.
D.C United and Columbus Crew also faced off Saturday night. D.C United would win the match 3-1 with goals from Josh Wolff and Charlie Davies (2 goals). Robbie Rogers would score the lone goal off of a penalty kick for Columbus. Dilly Duka and Julius James were booked for misconduct for Columbus as well as Marc Burch and Josh Wolff for D.C United.
The Sounders were handed their second loss of the season by the New York Red Bulls on Saturday night. The Red Bulls attained a 1-0 victory with a goal from Agudelo during the 70th minute and Hurtado of Seattle was booked for misconduct.
The first draw of the MLS season came from FC Dallas and Chicago on Saturday night. Diego Chaves of Chicago and Milton Rodriguez of Dallas scored the only goal for the two clubs. Cory Gibbs, Michael Videira, Josip Mikulic, and Gonzalo Segares were all booked for misconduct for Chicago; Jackson Goncalves, Daniel Hernandez, and Brek Shea (who was ejected from the match) were cited for Dallas.
The Houston Dynamo lost 1-0 against Philadelphia thanks to a goal from Danny Califf. Houston’s Brad Davis, and Philadelphia’s Carlos Ruiz, and Carlos Valdes were all booked for misconduct.
The Colorado Rapids beat the Portland Timbers 3 to 1. The defending MLS Cup Champions scored all three of their goals within the first 30 minutes of the match. Jeff Larentowicz, Omar Cummings, and Jamie Smith all scored for the Rapids, and Kenny Cooper scored the lone goal for the Timbers. Colorado’s Conor Casey was booked for misconduct.
Real Salt Lake won their season opener against the San Jose Earthquakes 1-0 thanks to Kyle Beckerman’s goal in the 63rd minute. Sam Cronin, Chris Leitch, and Khari Stephenson all found themselves booked for misconduct for San Jose, and Fabian Espindola received his booking as well for Real Salt Lake.
Chivas USA and Sporting Kansas City concluded Saturday’s action with a great goal scoring game. Sporting Kansas City would win 3-2 with two goals from Omar Bravo and one from C.J Sapong. Jimmy Conrad and Ben Zemanski would counter for Chivas. Davy Arnaud and Omar Bravo picked up booking for misconduct for Kansas City and Jimmy Conrad and Zarek Valentin would also be booked for Chivas.
Sunday’s MLS action had the LA Galaxy hosting the New England Revolution who made their season debut for 2011. Shalrie Joseph scored the lone goal for the Revolution and Juninho scored the only goal for the Galaxy.
The UEFA Champions League is now in the Quarter-final stage which is set to begin April 5th. The quarterfinals encompass two matches between the clubs with each club playing one game at home and the other on the road. Real Madrid, Tottenham, Internazionale, Schalke, Chelsea, Manchester United, Barcelona, and Shakhtar Donetsk have advanced into the quarter-finals. The match ups are as follows, and the home team is listed first.
The second leg of the quarterfinals will take place April 12th and 13th with the same teams going head to head to try to determine who advances into the semis. The second leg match ups are as follows.
Christiano Ronoldo of Real Madrid has injured his hamstring and is doubtful for the first leg against Tottenham. Club doctors have given a two to three week recovery time frame which is dependent on how he progresses. They are hopeful that he will be ready to go for their second leg against the Spurs.
Lionel Messi of Barcelona, Mario Gomez of Bayern, and Samuel Eto’o of Internazionale are tied for goals scored in the tournament at eight each. Messi and Eto’o can look to increase their goal count with the upcoming quarter-final match ups.
The United States Men’s National Team is preparing for their upcoming friendlies against Argentina and Paraguay. The team will take on soccer powerhouse Argentina on March 26th in New Jersey. You can watch the two teams go head to head on ESPN2 at 7pm EST. The Argentine squad is a blend of new talent and some of their biggest stars. Lionel Messi, Javier Zanetti, Javier Masherano and Esteban Cambiasso headline the roster for Argentina.
The United States has had to tweak its roster due to injuries. However, USA favorites can be seen in the lineup. Landon Donovan, Clint Dempsey, Joze Altidore, Carlos Bocanegra, and Tim Howard are just a few in the active lineup.
After Argentina, the USMNT take on Paraguay in Tennessee with the same roster taking the pitch.
Stuart Holden will be out for six months due to a knee injury after a dangerous tackle that produced a gash requiring 26 stitches. According to Yahoo news, the young midfielder’s injury will require surgery. Holden currently plays in the English Premier League for the Bolton Wanderers. We wish him the best of luck during his recovery.
The United States Women’s National Team is preparing for their upcoming matches against Japan in May. The first match will take play on May 14th at Columbus, Ohio while the second match will be on May 18th in Cary, N.C. Prior to these two matches the US defeated Japan 2-1 in their opening game of the Algarve Cup. The team went on to win the Cup by defeating Iceland 4-2; Japan took third place in the tournament when the won 2-1 against Sweden.