Harrison, NJ - If the 22,663 fans gathered on Sunday at a Red Bull Arena learned one thing about Red Bulls defender Rafa Marquez, it's that he wouldn't make it as a MMA fighter—and much less as a luchador. Before the Western Conference Semifinals first leg turned into the Survivor Series, Red Bulls fans were treated to a competitive but ugly match, where a total of 19 fouls were called.Seconds after the New York Red Bulls lost 1-0 to the LA Galaxy in the first leg of the Western Conference Semifinals, however, the sparks really began to fly. Marquez clearly threw the ball and hit Galaxy MF Landon Donovan.In a sequence of events that would have restored TNA'a Impact Wrestling storyline, a melee broke out. As Galaxy Adam Cristman confronted the Mexican international, Marquez threw a misfired head-butt and punch before falling to the ground in a motion that hearkened to mind images of Eddie Guerrero. LA midfielder Juninho and New York defender Stephen Keel rushed in and within a matter of seconds, both players needed to be restrained by their teammates from devolving into fisticuffs. Adding the finishing touches was none other than David Beckham, who did his signature clap and thanked ...
As the Philadelphia Union enter the MLS playoffs for the first time in their history, Sébastien Le Toux has once again made himself a strong candidate for the league’s MVP award. Rewind the clock to a year ago: Philadelphia’s first season in MLS. As team manager Peter Nowak blended homegrown US talent with players from South America, Africa and Europe. The never-say-die spirit of the Union, and of Philadelphia itself, was embodied by the team’s hardworking Frenchman. Justin Kavanagh followed the team’s progress through that difficult first season and traces the story of Sébastien Le Toux here in the final of four parts. 8.14.10: PPL Park, Chester, PA: Philadelphia Union v Colorado RapidsThose purple shoes are dancing again. It’s the 92nd minute. It’s 1-1. Do or die time. Earlier, Sébastien Le Toux had set up Danny Mwanga with another masterly assist, the second time in a week the Congolese striker had scored off the Frenchman’s vision. Now, Le Toux is going for broke. The ball on his toes, he splits Colorado Rapids Marvell Wynne and Drew Moor and is clearly clipped by Moor. A nailed-on penalty! This is it. Pick yourself up. Stay calm, and stroke home the winner. But ...
Sandy, Utah - The slaughtering handed out by Real Salt Lake in the first leg of the home-and-home MLS Western Conference semifinals to the higher-seeded Seattle Sounders shows that they are a squad to be reckoned with during the playoffs. Fans in Seattle might be unhappy, not only by their team's performance, but by the fact the second- and third-highest points total teams are squaring off with each other to start the playoffs. This is opposed to the easier path Eastern Conference teams have, if one looks at regular season success.Salt Lake's complete domination in every facet of the game culminated in a resounding 3-0 victory in front of a nearly-packed house at Rio Tinto Stadium. Many analysts had Seattle as the second-best team in the playoffs, behind the L.A. Galaxy, but they played back on their heels from the start, with RSL having a flurry of chances within the first few minutes of the game. The first of the three goals came from Alvaro Saborio on a controversial offside non-call. Further replays showed he was almost exactly even, however Sounders head coach Sigi Schmid was quoted by Fox Soccer Channel as saying it was a miscall. Coming out of ...
It's that time of year again, folks! November Madness is back and better than ever with a redesigned playoff format that has many Americans scratching their heads while New Yorkers breathe a sigh of relief.After a mid-week pair of Wild Card games, the MLS Playoff Quarterfinals have arrived and there are certainly some appetizing matchups. If you are interested in a Western Conference bracket preview, you have come to the right place!Enjoy!Begin Slideshow
At long last, it’s playoff football time for Bruce Arena’s Los Angeles Galaxy, who take on Hans Backe’s New York Red Bulls in the first leg of the 2011 Major League Soccer Western Conference semifinals at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, N.J. The Galaxy finished the regular season with a record of 19-5-10 (67 points) in defending their Major League Soccer Supporters’ Shield.As for the Red Bulls, they finished fifth in the MLS Eastern Conference with a record of 10-8-16 (46 points) and qualified for the MLS Cup Playoffs on the final week of the regular season against the Philadelphia Union. This is the marquee match of the four conference semifinal legs, which feature Thierry Henry and Rafael Marquez of New York taking on Landon Donovan, David Beckham and Robbie Keane of Los Angeles. Kickoff is scheduled for 12 p.m. PT/3 p.m. ET and will be televised by ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes. Keep it right here on Bleacher Report for continuing coverage of the 2011 Major League Soccer season.Read more MLS news on BleacherReport.com
Since signing Sébastien Le Toux from the Seattle Sounders in January 2010, Philadelphia Union’s team manager Peter Nowak has helped the Frenchman produce the finest football of his career. Le Toux reflects the Pole’s work ethic and commitment on the field, and his route to MLS has echoes of Nowak’s own international soccer odyssey. Rewind the clock to a year ago: Philadelphia’s first season in MLS. Justin Kavanagh followed the team’s progress through that difficult first season and traces the story of Sébastien Le Toux here in the third of four parts. Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia April 10, 2010 It’s a strange day at the ballpark. The Philadelphia Union is playing its first-ever home game. But they’re in another team’s home. And their team manager will not be sitting on the home bench. For Sébastien Le Toux, what matters more than this historic game is this morning’s plane crash in Russia. Among the dead are Polish President Lech Kaczynski, and many dignitaries. The Frenchman has Polish ancestry, but more importantly, he wants to do something special for Peter Nowak, the Pole whose faith in his abilities brought him here. Today, Nowak will watch from a private box, in ...
We're down to eight teams in the MLS Cup and with the Conference Semifinals kicking off tomorrow, this week is going to be packed with thrilling and intense matchups.The 2011 MLS Cup is wide open and the Conference Semifinals will separate the pretenders from the contenders. The Colorado Rapids and New York Red Bulls look to work their way up from wild-card hopeful to an MLS Cup victory, but they face an uphill battle with MLS giants lying in their paths.Will top seeds Sporting KC and the LA Galaxy clash in the final or will we see a promising underdog battle their way to the top?Sporting KC virtually came out of nowhere to rise to the top of the East. While they've made a habit of making critics look foolish, there is still the off chance that they are vulnerable to an early upset.The LA Galaxy won the West by a margin of four points. While they earned the top spot–and deservedly so–the Seattle Sounders are a force to be reckoned with.The Sounders don't have a gimme game lying in front of them by any means though, as the third seed in the West, Real Salt Lake managed to take ...
Here in North America, we are coming down to the wire in the Major League Soccer season, with the Philip J. Anschutz Trophy on everyone's mind.With the Columbus Crew and FC Dallas eliminated in the wild-card round of the MLS Cup Playoffs, only eight teams remain in the hunt, including the defending cup holders, the Colorado Rapids.Let's take a look at the teams that are still alive and gauge their chances of lifting the MLS Cup at the Home Depot Center in November.Begin Slideshow
With the Wild Card round completed, it's time for the action to intensify in the MLS Cup Playoffs.The first leg of the Conference semifinals kicks off on Saturday, October 29th. All matches will be aired live on either ESPN or Fox Soccer.Playoff soccer action has been incredible over the past few seasons, and it should be just as good this year.The Western Conference is loaded with talent which sets up two incredible semifinal matches in the west.Here is the full schedule for this year's playoff soccer.
Time Matchup TV Station Venue
Sat, Oct. 29, 10 p.m. EDT First Leg: Seattle Sounders at Real Salt Lake Fox Soccer, TSN 2 Rio Tinto Stadium
Sun, Oct. 30, 3 p.m. EDT
First Leg: Los Angeles Galaxy at New York Red Bulls
ESPN2, ESPN Deportes
Sun, Oct. 30, 5 p.m. EDT First Leg: Houston Dynamos at Philadelphia Union
ESPN2, ESPN Deportes
Sun, Oct. 30, 7:30 EDT First Leg: Sporting Kansas City at Colorado Rapids Fox Soccer, TSN 2 Dick's Sporting Goods Park
Wed, Nov. 2, 8 p.m. EDT
Second Leg: Colorado Rapids at Sporting Kansas City Fox Soccer, TSN 2 Livestrong Sporting Park
Wed, Nov. 2, ...
As the Philadelphia Union prepare for their first-ever play-off game against Houston Dynamo on Sunday, much of the team’s hopes are pinned on the phenomenal form of French No. 9, Sébastien Le Toux. Le Toux has contributed 11 goals and nine assists to the Union’s historic push into the postseason. Ten of those goals came in the last 12 games. The 27-year-old has played every minute of every one of the Union’s league games this season. Le Toux was named MLS Player of the Month for September and seems a likely contender for the league’s MVP award. Rewind the clock to a year ago: Philadelphia’s first season in MLS. The Union’s locker room echoed with accents from California, Europe, Latin America and Africa. As Polish team manager Peter Nowak strove to impose a collective identity, the French playmaker became a focal point in determining the spirit of the Union. Justin Kavanagh followed his progress through that difficult first season and traces the story of Sébastien Le Toux here in the second of four parts.The town house that Sébastien Le Toux shares with younger teammate Kyle Nakazawa is spartan. No wall hangings, no mementos, no paintings have been added to the ...