By MICHAEL PENG
Toronto FC does not think fourth place is exactly a comforting position to be in right now to secure a playoff position, and it looks like Michael Bradley will be around to help the club continue its push at the expense of the U.S. Men’s National Team.
According to a report from the Toronto Sun, Bradley is expected to miss the U.S.’s friendly against Peru in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 4. Toronto is set to play the Seattle Sounders on the road a day later, and there is a “good chance” Bradley will be available for TFC during that trip.
Bradley hasn’t spent as much time with TFC as the club would like, as he has missed seven games this season due to USMNT call-ups, including four consecutive contests during the CONCACAF Gold Cup run in July.
The report, however, does not mention if Bradley will be available for the Americans’ ensuing friendly against Brazil on Sept. 8 in Foxborough, Massachusetts, nor whether his club and national team teammate Jozy Altidore will leave TFC during the same stretch.
Here are some other news and notes from around the league:
VANCOUVER WHITECAPS CAPTURE CANADIAN CHAMPIONSHIP
The Vancouver Whitecaps can call themselves the champions of the Great White North at last.
Since the inception of the Voyageurs Cup in 2002 and the current format of the Canadian Championship came into existence in 2008, the Whitecaps had yet to capture the elusive trophy. That is, until Wednesday night.
A 2-0 win over the Montreal Impact added onto the 2-2 draw on the road in the first leg gave Vancouver a 4-2 aggregate win in front of its home fans at BC Place. Octavio Rivero opened the scoring about five minutes before halftime with a tap-in, and Tim Parker doubled the Whitecaps’ lead with a header in the 53rd minute.
The win guaranteed the Whitecaps a berth in next season’s CONCACAF Champions League.
INDEPENDENT REVIEW PANELS REJECTS ORLANDO’S RED CARD APPEAL FOR RAMOS
Rafael Ramos will not be available to Orlando City’s next MLS game against the Chicago Fire after his red card appeal was rejected by an independent review panel on Thursday.
Ramos was sent off by referee Jose Carlos Rivero in the 36th minute of Orlando’s Aug. 22 match against Toronto FC after he lunged into Justin Morrow with a harsh challenge.
The Lions filed an appeal this week requesting a review of Rivero’s decision, but the panel – consisting of one representative from the U.S. Soccer Federation, one representative from the Canadian Soccer Association, and one representative from the Professional Referees Organization – were not unanimous that a “serious and obvious error of the disciplinary decision” was made by the referee.
Per league policy, Orlando City has one more unsuccessful appeal for any send-off review remaining for the 2015 season.
MLS’S INTERNATIONAL CALL-UPS LIST FOR EARLY SEPTEMBER GROWS
With a number of international competition, such as World Cup and Euro Cup qualifiers, set for early September, a number of MLS players have been called up to their respective national teams.
Here is a list of of who will be called, with some of the more recent selections being announced on Thursday:
Kaka, Orlando City — Brazil (Sept. 5 vs. Costa Rica, Sept. 8 at United States)
Sam Adekugbe, Vancouver Whitecaps — Canada (Sept. 4 and Sept. 8 vs. Belize)
Tesho Akindele, FC Dallas — Canada (Sept. 4 and Sept. 8 vs. Belize)
Kyle Bekker, Montreal Impact — Canada (Sept. 4 and Sept. 8 vs. Belize)
Maxime Crepeau, Montreal Impact — Canada (Sept. 4 and Sept. 8 vs. Belize)
Marcel de Jong, Sporting Kansas City — Canada (Sept. 4 and Sept. 8 vs. Belize)
Will Johnson, Portland Timbers — Canada (Sept. 4 and Sept. 8 vs. Belize)
Cyle Larin, Orlando City — Canada (Sept. 4 and Sept. 8 vs. Belize)
Karl Ouimette, New York Red Bulls — Canada (Sept. 4 and Sept. 8 vs. Belize)
Russell Teibert, Vancouver Whitecaps — Canada (Sept. 4 and Sept. 8 vs. Belize)
Markus Halsti, D.C. United — Finland (Sept. 4 at Greece, Sept. 7 vs. Faroe Islands)
David Accam, Chicago Fire — Ghana (Sept. 1 vs. Congo, Sept. 4 at Rwanda)
Krisztián Németh, Sporting Kansas City — Hungary (Sept. 4 vs. Romania, Sept. 7 at Northern Ireland)
Román Torres, Seattle Sounders — Panama (Sept. 4 vs. Uruguay, Sept. 8 at Venezuela)
Anibal Godoy, San Jose Earthquakes — Panama (Sept. 4 vs. Uruguay, Sept. 8 at Venezuela)
Blas Pérez, FC Dallas — Panama (Sept. 4 vs. Uruguay, Sept. 8 at Venezuela)
What do you think about Bradley reportedly missing out on the USMNT’s friendly vs. Peru? Impressed with the Whitecaps’ capture of the Canadian Championship?
Share your thoughts below.