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Soccer Sunday: Your Running Commentary

Juan Mata of Manchester United

Manchester United and Fulham both find themselves in desperate need of a victory, and they’ll face each other looking for that sorely-needed win when they meet at Old Trafford today.

David Moyes will be hoping his team can snap out of a funk that has seen Manchester United lose three of their past five league matches. Fulham’s recent funk is even worse, with Cottagers having lost four straight to send Fulham into last place in the Premier League. Clint Dempsey is not in uniform for Fulham today.

In France, champion Paris St. Germain take on AS Monaco in a clash of big-spending clubs. Monaco will look to feature newly-signed Dimitar Berbatov against a PSG side that has been rolling in recent weeks as Zlatan Ibrahimovic has continued his outstanding form.

In Spain, Barcelona travel to Sevilla knowing that a win could force a three-way tie atop the La Liga standings.

If you will be watching today’s action (or want to take about the early morning matches) please feel free to share your thoughts, opinions and some play-by-play in the comments section below.

Enjoy the action (Today’s TV schedule is after the jump):

TODAY’S SOCCER ON TV

8:30am – Tottenham vs. Everton – USA Network

8:30am – PFC Zwolle vs. Ajax – ESPN Deportes

9am – Hellas Verona vs. Juventus – beIN Sports en Español

9am – Lazio vs. Roma – beIN Sports USA

9:30am – Stuttgart vs. Augsburg – GolTV USA

11am – Manchester United vs. Fulham – USA Network

11am – Bordeaux vs. Lorient – beIN Sports USA

11am – Real Valladolid vs. Elche – beIN Sports en Español

11:30am – Schalke 04 vs. Hannover – GolTV USA

1pm – Real Sociedad vs. Levante – beIN Sports en Español

1pm – Puebla vs. Chivas de Guadalajara – Azteca America/ESPN Deportes

1pm – Toluca vs. Chiapas – Univision

2pm – Ponte Preta vs. Sao Paulo – GolTV USA

2:45pm – Inter Milan vs. Sassuolo – beIN Sports Play

3pm – AS Monaco vs. Paris Saint-Germain – Univision Deportes

3pm – Sevilla vs. Barcelona – beIN Sports USA

4pm – Newell’s Old Boys vs. Boca Juniors – GolTV USA

6pm – Atlante vs. Cruz Azul – Univision Deportes

6pm – Queretaro vs. Verazruz – Azteca America/ESPN Deportes

121 comments
  • argh

    apparently dempsey isn’t in the 18 to face United today

    sucks but I need FULHAM to win regardless as I enjoy the defeat of united

    Like

    • ZTom

      “”apparently dempsey isn’t in the 18 to face United today, sucks””

      that’s cause dempsey sucks & so does howard…beat to the near post for the umpteenth time
      & did not pounce on adebeyor when he got in the box

      Like

      • Increase0

        I’m gunna assume thats sarcasm…. Cause that was a really good shot and Evertons defenders totally balls that up. “Free kick, are we supposed to stand near the tall man?”

        Like

      • ZTom

        no sarc…beat to near post ain’t a defender’s fault, it’s keeper’s fault.

        Like

      • James

        Please get back to doing your english homework, kid. Your parents don’t approve of you spending so much time on forums.

        Like

      • Kingsly Alexander

        Lol forums. This is a anonymous spam comment section, no better then youtube

        Like

      • Louis Z

        I didn’t see the game but if true then he is not talking nonsense. the rule is the goalie is responsible for the near post. period.

        Like

      • go euro or go home

        so let’s go ahead and take it all the way and say that Howard sucks…

        ZTom sounds very credible. Surely, he really knows what he is talking about. Or, he’s got no clue… yeah, that’s more likely.

        Like

  • i have a question

    anyone who followed Yanks Abroad in the 90’s

    how well did the likes of Wynalda, Moore and McBride do in Germany? I know they played in the Bundesliga and 2nd Bundesliga . but how did they do? scored well? helped change opinions of americans?

    Like

    • Joe

      I know VfL Wolfsburg signed a bunch of Americans in the mid 90s and I’m pretty sure McBride was among them, as well as Claudio Reyna. As I recall, there were certain clubs that would give Americans a chance at a time when they still earning respect in Europe.

      Like

      • argh

        94-95 season so when he was 22

        They were in 2 Bundesliga. 2 goals in like 17 matches but apparently he got some good reviews for his performances

        Like

    • James

      Not in your list, but Renya was captain of Wolfsburg during his 97-99 stint there. Must have raised a few eyebrows in the process

      Like

      • solles

        in his day he was considered the best outfield player the US had, the succesor to Tab Ramos who to me is maybe the best midfielder to ever play for the US, certainly one of.

        Like

    • Gary Page

      There was no Internet in the 90’s, so unless you read German and subscribed to some German newspapers, or had an early satellite dish that cost $10,000 back then (probably $30 k in today’s equivalent), you had no way of following US players in Germany. You have to realize just how little interest there was in soccer back then. Not until the MLS started and the US performance in the WC in Japan/Korea in 2002 did the media even start paying attention.

      Like

    • solles

      Wynalda scored a bunch of goals for Saarbrucken, over 20 in a couple of seasons IIRC, Joe Max also at Sarbrucken and did well as I recall, though neither McBride or Moore were there for very long. Moore also played for Nuremburg. McBride I dont think played much or Wolfsburg. Of course all three of them may well have stayed in Germany had MLS not come along in 1996. There seemed to always be Americans in germany around this time; Reyna as there for awhile, and of course the always-overlooked Joe Enochs became a legend at onasbruck and as I think actually the first american to manage a club in Europe, ahead of Thomas Dooley and well ahead of Bob Bradley.

      Like

      • solles

        well maybe not ahead of dooley actually. lol i need an edit button today

        Like

      • AH

        Ha ha. I was just thinking the same thing. How is Wynalda’s name brought up in every forum? Is he trolling to get his name brought up. Or maybe his dad?

        Like

      • Nate Dollars

        i agree with a previous commenter–these have got to be the weirdest bots ever.

        Like

  • i have a question

    any chance that Jozy is saving his goals for Brazil? If hey doesn’t score a single goal until May and then scores 6 goals in the world cup, would u accept that?

    Like

      • cotton

        while i agree that they had very good chemistry and were dominant during their time together on the U-21 side, that was against U-21 defenders. They’ve each had their struggles at the next level, and they’ve been playing in top leagues long enough to see it’s not just the fault of the people that play around them, their individual ability is..limited. They’re good players, but won’t reach legend status like a McBride or Donovan.

        Adu is a good bet to make something out of nothing, and as i recall a good free kick taker, but is such a liability defensively that I would only realistically consider adding him to the game if the U.S. were playing a man up, 10v11, as something of a second striker in a 4-4-2, where his mistakes are in a place less dangerous than midfield, where his creativity is best placed.

        Unfortunate mismatch of a players skills and his body is the story of Adu’s life, for me.

        Like

  • biff

    This is troubling. Does anyone know why Clint did not make the roster for Man U? Did a news search and could not find anything.

    Like

    • ZTom

      “”Does anyone know why Clint did not make the roster for Man U””

      Cause he ain’t good enough

      Like

      • Sandtrout

        Hey, he may be right. Dempsey played 120 minutes vs. Sheffield United and didn’t do a lot. Maybe it’s time for him to head to spring training with Seattle.

        Like

      • Kingsly Alexander

        And he’ll only be there for another month. Long term vs short term. I think Rene might be thinking of integrating the mass number of players he brought in instead of worrying about someone who was brought in to make things happen temporarily, but obviously hasn’t been doing that.

        Like

  • i have a question

    is this the hardest relegation fight ever for FULHAM? they barely survived the 07-08 season which is LEGENDARY

    Like

    • Daniel

      Hard to say since they are notorious for flirting with relegation and pulling out at the end

      Like

    • Gary Page

      Twice they escaped on the last day deep in the second half with goals. Once was Dempsey;’s first goal in the EPL, the other was on a header by their long time midfielder Danny, forget his last name (senior brain cramp).. It was noteworthy because he didn’t score much and never with headers. Fighting relegation is really more the norm for Fulham than being mid-table, as they were for a couple of years when Dempsey was at his peak.

      Like

      • Clemsonuee

        Danny Murphy. It was the twilight of his career, but he gave Fulham some good years. They still haven’t really replaced him. Though Holtby may be at least a temporary solution.

        Like

  • Brian

    Is Clint broken? nearly a year of poor form and now he is dropped. If things continue along this trajectory through the spring he won’t be on the squad come May.

    Like

    • Gary Page

      Where were you during the last year? The second half of the season at Tottenham he played well and he scored something like 5 goals in 8 games for the US before Altidore got hot and started scoring. Dempsey carried the US in qualifying before Altidore got hot.

      Like

    • Increase0

      Or he was never quite in shape and only on a short loan so why bother trying to integrate him or get him going. Could be that. Just saying.

      Like

  • Gerard D.

    It’s probably time we start wondering if Clint Dempsey even deserves a spot on the plane to Brazil.

    Like

      • Gerard D.

        No True Scotsman fallacy. Thanks.

        Klinsmann dropped Michael Bradley from the team at one point. You think Clint Dempsey is any different?

        Like

      • Gary Page

        If you recall, and apparently most people here have the attention spans of 5 year olds and can’t remember past last week, with Altidore and Donovan, it was because of their lack of perceived commitment, not lack of club playing time. With Donovan it was also lack of fitness because of his long lay off. Neither case is the same as Dempsey.

        Like

      • Gerard D.

        He did?

        Are you sure it wasn’t because Bradley found a new squad and found his form?

        Like

      • Nate Dollars

        yes. bradley hadn’t lost his form with the national team. klinsmann seemed to be trying to make a statement about ‘earning your place’ with bradley, and he quickly found out that bradley wasn’t just a product of nepotism–he was an essential part of the team (too essential, in my opinion).

        that said, i can’t see klinsmann leaving his captain home, or even out of the first 11, partly because i’m pretty sure that he’ll start looking better once he gets back to mls.

        Like

      • Kingsly Alexander

        Dempsey isn’t going to be dropped. Klinsmann only talked about him and Jozy being apart of the “spine” of the team a couple of weeks ago.

        Also he’s the captain. It could be pretty demoralizing for the team to drop him after all he’s done during qualifying.

        Like

      • Louis Z

        one thing is dropping a player for a friendly another is dropping him from the WC squad. He is not playing well, anyone that says different is fooling themselves. I think he will make the WC squad but if he continues with this funk, I don’t think he deserves to be a starter. We are playing with current Dempsey not the one from 2010.

        Like

      • Gary Page

        If you knew ANYTHING, the Clint Dempsey from 2013 would do just fine. But of course, some people think he went from being the best US scorer to being horrible in less than a year.

        Like

    • Joe

      I love Clint Dempsey, but he doesn’t play with a chip on his shoulder, anymore. He jogs around and lays the ball off. He doesn’t pounce on opportunities in and around the box like he used to do. So far, it appears that Fulham’s manager has selected wisely.

      Like

      • chuck

        These are my feelings exactly. I loved the way he played at Fulham(and somewhat at spurs) in his time there. I haven’t seen that guy in quite some time. I am wondering what it would take for him to regain that drive because the loan spell certainly didn’t do it.

        Like

    • Patrick2

      Sorry for repeat post material, but as I mentioned below, Dempsey (who is working his way back into fitness) played 120 minutes earlier in the week in a Cup match. Meulensteen probably figured he’d give Clint his match minutes and hoped some Veterans like Clint and Hangeland could pull the team out in the Cup match without tons of preparation while he got the rest of the team he wanted to start against Man U ready. Seems like a strategic way to use Clint given he won’t be there for too long, and Clint can’t complain about minutes.

      Like

    • Herschel Skywalker

      I heard the announcers on Sirius saying that Fulham has the entire second string in today (even backup keeper) bc they are saving first string for midweek clash against Liverpool. Hangelabd on bench, Holtby as striker. They are throwing this one away.

      Like

      • Clemsonuee

        It’s not Fulham ‘s entire 2nd team. Stek is the first team keeper, and Reither, Burn, Holtby, and Slidell have been starting.

        Like

      • jones

        huh, why would they do that? I think they’d be more likely to get a point(s) off ManU this season than Liverpool.

        Like

      • fischy

        It’s not a first team – second team thing, I think. It’s a strategic choice to use no strikers. Fulham’s strength, if they have any is in the midfield, where Man Utd is almost at its weakest (their defense is even weaker). They were parking the bus, and hoping to win it on the counter.

        Like

    • Patrick2

      Dempsey ( who is working his way back into fitness ) played 120 minutes earlier in the week in a Cup match. Meulensteen probably figured he’d give Clint his match minutes and hoped some Veterans like Clint and Hangeland could pull the team out in the Cup match without tons of preparation while he got the rest of the team he wanted to start against Man U ready. Gets good use out of Clint, gives him the minutes Clint wants, but doesn’t waste too much time coaching him given Seattle gets him back soon.

      Like

  • jones

    How much longer is his loan? I mean, at this point it would be better for him to go back to Seattle and work hard during preseason. He really needs to get back his form (and his drive, imo).

    Like

  • Increase0

    I seriously thought a foul was called on that Fulham goal because it seemed like everyone on Manu just stopped playing.

    Like

    • Fredo

      I cannot understand how ManU could not finish off that game. At the same time, I had the feeling that they would concede a goal.

      Like

  • Clemsonuee

    Seriously, Bent on for Tankovic? Bent can’t hit the broad side of a barn right now, and Tankovic did well in the few touches he had.

    Like

    • fischy

      I love it when I see comments like that — when internuts think they know more than a seasoned EPL coach.

      Like

      • Gary Page

        More and more soccer newbies are showing up on this site it seems, spreading their ignorance. Maybe I am being harsh, but some of the comments here are sweeping and have no basis in fact or ignore facts completely.

        Like

      • Increase0

        It’s not that bother me. It’s the negativity. This whole page is about Dempsey and other negative garbage. Wish people would talk about the games on today and there were some good games on.

        Like

      • Clemsonuee

        It was more about Tankovic playing well, but it’s hard to call Rene a seasoned EPL coach as he’s been an assistant his whole career until now, minus a few months. That said obviously he’s a better coach than me. But thanks for letting more know that.

        Like

      • Nate Dollars

        to be fair, it wasn’t just “internuts” who were seriously questioning that sub.

        Like

      • Clemsonuee

        Thanks. Bent has seriously not played well this season. And a lot of people questioned that he even made the bench over Mitronlu.

        Like

  • Nate

    Dempsey will be in Brazil. JK may make a show ala Donovan and Jozy previously, but those 3 guys, along with MB give the US the best chance to win, based on prior performances on big stages.

    Like

    • AngstChild

      JK’s job is to make sure that his top players are in top form for the WC. Wouldn’t surprise me for JK to leave Clint off the roster in the near term. His form is very troubling.

      Like

    • Louis Z

      based on prior performances? are you saying Clint has that “prior performances” in his back pocket and will only take it out during the WC?

      Like

    • Dennis

      Really surprised ManU isn’t up several goals today after that performance against Liverpool. 15 minutes left and down 0-1. Rooney, VanPersie, Chicharito, Janujaz and Mata; Moyes is going for it.

      Like

      • Increase0

        And there it is. Apparently they hit the most crosses of any team so far this season.

        Like

      • Bean

        But only 18 out of 80 something crosses connected. Dreadful number to put up, and not get the win.

        Like

    • Michael Stypulkoski

      What a silly thing to say. Have you seen how tight the bottom of the table is? Just seven points separates Swansea in tenth from Fulham at the bottom.

      Like

  • Clunk Dumpsey

    I’m still better than Lazy Howtoscore. We still got the draw, so I’m OK. COYW.

    Like

  • argh

    the usa world cup striker roster will be

    JOZY, AJ, Juan AGUDELO

    sorry WONDO. EJ has to score or he won’t even be considered. BOYD still has a small chance but AGUDELO will probably pipe him to it.

    Like

    • John

      I think EJ has come through for Klinsmann too many times, for him to leave him off without some huge drop in form.

      Like

    • Gary Page

      EJ is a monster in the air, better than anyone else we have, so it may depend on how vulnerable our opponents in the group are to headers. That’s why Klinsmann gets paid the big bucks, to make decisions like that based on careful scouting and evaluation.

      Like

      • John

        To be honest the only Portugal match I’ve really watched was the one against Sweden. However the way they just left Zlatan (the most dangerous player by a mile) barely marked just standing in front of goal for his first, you have to think that one might be a good one for EJ.

        Like

  • Birgit Calhoun

    I hope the spine can be operated on. As long as neither Altidore nor Dempsey are finding credibility in Europe surgery might be indicated.

    Like

    • Increase0

      Who are these people with all the emotional whinging? I actually expect someone to give a play by play of their feelings of sadness.

      Go on! Give me some narration of the tears falling down your cheeks. Chill out watch a game that is actually on right now and enjoy the sport in general.

      Like

      • Brett

        The only thing worse than whinging is whinging about whinging. Why are we saying “whinging” in the first place?

        Like

      • Increase0

        I watched an episode of Downton Abbey once. I’m a broken man now.

        Like

      • Darwin

        Thanks! I mentioned this yesterday. Apparently, people have forgotten who we are (the yanks!) and expect real life to be like FIFA.

        Like

  • SBI TroII

    Intriguing French league match up on Univision deportes. PSG woth the early lead but Monaco nearly equalized twice.

    Like

  • usaalltheway

    I told you guys this would be Clint’s role when he signed the loan offer. His prime is over and he definitely does not have the same fire in his belly that made him a stud just a few seasons ago. Sad. Oh we’ll, next man up. He’ll be in Brazil on flair and shooting ability, but he’s no 90 minute international anymore.

    Like

    • John

      Part of Clint’s problem is he isn’t as selfish a player anymore. Alot of Clints goals came from just hanging out at the back post and waiting for something to fall to him. Now it seems like he has more pressure to be in the middle of everything and create. Thats why I think we should put Donovan in the middle and put Clint on the left where he can just drift and sneak into space.

      Like

      • Brett

        His effort and work rate dropped significantly. His best years at Fulham were years where he had to fight in training to get minutes. If he made the conscious decision to become a different type of player, I think he might have made a bad call.

        Like

      • John

        We’ll it depends, I think it has hurt his goal scoring but I think he has become more of a driving force tying together the midfield. The situation isn’t as simple as he is out of form. I think he is taking over more responsibilities on the field that get less of the glory.

        Like

    • Gary Page

      Thank goodness we have your wonderful opinions to rely on instead of that know nothing Klinsmann, who, I’m sure, made a huge mistake by starting Dempsey in all the qualifiers.

      Like

  • Darwin

    So many overblown emotions on this site these days. I guess I’ll take it as a positive, but what is with the overstated expectations? Are we all new to this?

    Like

    • Gary Page

      It seems unbelievable, really. Seeping conclusions by people who know next to nothing about what is going on. For example, why didn’t Dempsey dress today? Nobody here knows, but that doesn’t stop them from concluding this proves conclusively he is washed up. Geeezzz.

      Like

      • Gary Page

        That should be sweeping conclusions, although on second thought, sleeping conclusions would also work considering the thought that goes into them.

        Like

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