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Friday Kickoff: Ching injured in Dynamo win, Fulham rolls in Europa and more

Brian Ching (GettyImages)

Brad Davis converted a pair of penalty kicks to help give the Houston Dynamo a crucial 2-1 victory against Real Salt Lake on Thursday night, but the bigger story was an injury to forward Brian Ching that could jeopardize his World Cup chances.

Ching pulled his left hamstring during the match, and was forced to leave, and while the initial prognosis was a hamstring strain, Ching's injury looked more serious than that.

With just six weeks to go before the U.S. national team begin training camp for the 2010 World Cup, Ching could be racing against time to be fit.

The Dynamo still managed to pull out the victory in its home opener thanks to a pair of Davis penalty kicks earned on fouls committed by Real Salt Lake's Jamison Olave.

Here are some other stories from this morning and Thursday as Friday rolls on:


Goals from Bobby Zamora and Damien Duff helpedFulham pull off a Europa League quarterfinal first-leg victory against German champions Wolfsburg, but an Alexander Madlung header made the final score 2-1 and gave Wolfsburg a vital away goal.

In other Europa League quarterfinal action, Liverpool fell to Benfica, 2-1, after Ryan Babel was red carded for making contact with Benfica defender Luisao. Hamburg also won 2-1, downing Standard Liege in its home leg.

The only quarterfinal not to finish 2-1 was Atletico Madrid's 2-2 tie vs. Valencia. The result puts Atletico in the driver's seat heading into the return leg next week in Madrid.


Former New York Red Bulls manager Juan Carlos Osorio watched his new club, Once Caldas, record a vital 1-0 victory against Paraguayan club Nacional to move into first place in its Copa Libertadores group.

The victory helped Once Caldas secure a place in the tournament's Round of 16, and also means that Once Caldas can win its group if it ties or beats Sao Paolo on April 21 in Brazil.

Ronaldo continued his goal-scoring ways, netting the first of Corinthians' two goals in a 2-1 win vs. Cerro Porteno.

In the day's other Libertadores action, an Ivan Hurtado penalty kick helped give Deportivo Quito a 1-0 victory against fellow Ecuadorian side Emelec.


Bolton manager Owen Coyle remains confident that Stuart Holden will be back before the end of the season, with this report suggesting he could be back in two weeks.

In case you missed it on Thursday, Cesc Fabregas is set to miss six weeks with a broken leg.

As if things couldn't get worse for Arsenal on the injury front, William Gallas could be done for the season.


What do you think of these developments? Hoping Ching's injury isn't that serious, or do you think it opens the door even wider for Herculez Gomez? Starting to believe Fulham can win the Europa League? Surprised Osorio is doing so well in Libertadores?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Milan has to sign a bunch of center backs; it’s a big area of need and Gooch has only shown them 30 minutes of real play so far.

    It’s hardly certain they will get Vidic and anyway, they believe in competition for positions. I wouldn’t wory about it mostly because it’s not me who may lose my job. It’s up to Gooch to perform well in the World Cup so that even if Milan don’t want him, there will be other suitors.

    The news about Vidic is good for the US as it should light a fire under Gooch.

  2. they only won because the ref.. called the fouls.. that were in the box…. They were both fouls. Did Houston foul in the box twice? Did Houston keep a clean sheet? End of story..

  3. Come on Charlie Davies! Get healthy! Ching is a lock in my book (as long as he is healthy)…It was not good seeing him go down on the field without much contact. We need Ching! He is always working hard on the field. Hope he gets better in time.

  4. On point. THis is easy. Bob needs to beg McLegend to come out of retirment. I’m not a huge Chinge fan, but i don’t dislike him either. He brings something to the game that none of our other forwards have. NOTE: not saying he should start, but you need someone like him in you arsenal.

    What RLW2020 said, against England, you need a goal or your need to preserve a late lead, who are you going to turn to? Buddle? Gomez? Casey? YOu turn to McLegend, that’s who you turn to? Who do you want going one-on-one in the box with Cheaterboy and Ferdinand?

    i think McHead’s on records as saying he’d come out of retirement if “his country needed him” (I’m trying to be over-dramatic).

  5. Man, I was kidding when I said the only way Herculwez would get on the squad was if Ching was injured. Whatever, he won’t be missed. For those who think otherwise, look at the teams he scored against for the US, and his form against teams in major games. subbed off at half against Mexico, WC qualifying goals against Barbados and Cuba. Not a good resume. I vote McBride Gomez Jozy Davies.

  6. Espindola is the player you are talking about and he really seemed like he wanted to influence the game in a major way. He was ignoring teammates who made overlapping runs and taking shots himself instead of trying to maintain possession in the offensive third of the field.

  7. I have a sneaking suspicion that the picture is misleading. However, as Ives pointed out to me, Google thinks we might enjoy that service.

    I’m with you though, I imagine a bunch of desparate over-tanned women looking to relive the glory days of the 1960s and 70s.

  8. What about Espindola? Is he going to see ANY punishment for his decision to pick a fight with Boswell for absolutely no reason?

    Props where props are due, RSL played the better game (save for Olave giving up careless PK’s like it was his job), but that kind of behavior is just brutish. Espindola looks right at Boswell and just decides “a little less MLS, a little more UFC”.

    I wonder if he comes from Tevez’ neighborhood.

  9. How old does one have to be to live the “cougar life?” The picture is mouth-watering, but the word ‘cougar’ makes me think of leathery wrinkles.

  10. Bummer about Ching, because now Bradley will go with Casey. And although I don’t love either, I would rather see Ching. Hopefully Bradley would at least give players like Gomez, and Buddle a chance before deciding.

  11. A lot of people here only look at goal production with a forward and it’s really sad. I think everyone who watches this sport needs to go try to sign up for a Sunday league team and play the game.

    A forward like Ching makes everyone on the field better, he holds up the play, can earn fouls around the box, works hard off the ball, and has the experience to come on and contribute.

  12. hell nooo!!! dont get me wrong edson buddle is hot right now, but id rather have hercules gomez than edson buddle. think about it. buddle is streaky, gomez is at least being consistent in the mexican league, even though in MLS (post-galaxy era) he wasnt, but thats becuase he played wing and not forward. buddle i dont want to see in south africa, id take conor and his fat belly over him not to mention that id cry over the fact the US cannot produce a legitamite fwd. although jozy is promise.

  13. Time for Onyewu to m

  14. I don’t think it’s Ching’s injury that hurt his World Cup chances. I think it’s more the fact that he can’t score goals against anybody not in the MLS or from Cuba.

  15. we need England to have a couple of their players (ex: Rooney, stay injured) to be out on injury as well, then game on 🙂

  16. I never thought I’d be so upset at the thought of Ching missing the World Cup squad. But right now we really need him. Get better fast Chingy!

  17. i thought the first PK really wasn’t one, but the second was a foul and landin help to sell it to the ref. i also expected more in terms of offense from both teams. and why wasn’t that a straight red on RSL (forgot his name) who tackled the houston player with 30 seconds left in the game. absolutely stupid foul!


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