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Soccer Sunday: Your Running Commentary

Sporting KC Seattle (USA TODAY Sports)


With the UEFA Champions League group stage returning to action this week, the slate of top-end European match offerings this Sunday are light, meaning MLS will offer today’s headlining action.

The Seattle Sounders have a chance to jump into a tie for first place in the MLS Western Conference with a road win against Sporting Kansas City today. Sporting KC will be without suspended standouts Benny Feilhaber and Matt Besler, which will make things very tough against a Sounders side surging in a four-match unbeaten streak.

The LA Galaxy will look to halt their recent slump with a win at home against FC Dallas. The reigning MLS champions can jump to the top of the Supporters’ Shield standings with a victory.

In Italy, Serie A leader Inter Milan puts its perfect 5-0 record on the line against second-place Fiorentina.

If you will be watching today’s action, please free to share your thoughts and opinions in the comments section below.

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



11 a.m. — NBCSN/NBC Sports Live Extra/Telemundo — Watford vs. Crystal Palace


6 a.m. — beIN Sports Connect – Sporting Gijón vs. Real Betis

10 a.m. — beIN Sports Connect — Deportivo La Coruña vs. Espanyol

12:15 p.m. — beIN Sports en Español — Getafe vs. Levante

2:30 p.m. — beIN Sports en Español — Real Sociedad vs. Athletic Bilbao


9:30 a.m. — Fox Sports 1/Fox Soccer 2Go — Eintracht Frankfurt vs. Hertha Berlin

11:30 a.m. — Fox Sports 2/Fox Soccer 2Go — Borussia Dortmund vs. Darmstadt 98


8 a.m. — beIN Sports Connect — Marseille vs. Angers

11 a.m. — beIN Sports Connect — Montpellier vs. Lorient

11 a.m. — beIN Sports USA — Guingamp vs. AS Monaco

3 p.m. — beIN Sports Connect — Saint-Étienne vs. Nice


6:30 a.m. — beIN Sports USA/beIN Sports en Español — Genoa vs. Milan

9 a.m. — beIN Sports USA — Torino vs. Palermo

9 a.m. — beIN Sports en Español — Hellas Verona vs. Lazio

9 a.m. — beIN Sports Connect — Chievo Verona vs. Sassuolo

9 a.m. — beIN Sports Connect — Bologna vs. Udinese

2:45 p.m. — beIN Sports USA — Inter vs. Fiorentina


1 p.m. — Univision/Univision Deportes — Pumas UNAM vs. Tigres UANL

6 p.m. — Univision Deportes — Puebla vs. Cruz Azul


5 p.m — ESPN/ESPN2/ESPN Deportes — Sporting Kansas City vs. Seattle Sounders

7 p.m. — Fox Sports 1/Fox Soccer 2Go — San Jose Earthquakes vs. Real Salt Lake

9:30 p.m. — Fox Sports 1/Fox Soccer 2Go — LA Galaxy vs. FC Dallas


4 p.m — ESPN3/WatchESPN/One World Sports — Edmonton vs. New York Cosmos


1 p.m. — ESPN3 — Clemson vs. Miami

1 p.m. — Big Ten Network — Wisconsin vs. Maryland

1 p.m. — ESPN3 — Boston College vs. NC State

1 p.m. — ESPN3 — Syracuse vs. Virginia Tech


2 p.m. — ESPN3 — Florida vs. Auburn

2 p.m. — Pac-12 Network — Arizona St. vs. Washington St.

6 p.m. — SEC Network + — Alabama vs. South Carolina

6 p.m. — SEC Network + — Arkansas vs. Kentucky

8 p.m. — SEC Network + — LSU vs. Ole Miss


    • Dempsey does play with a chip on his shoulder, that is not a bad thing for a guy who will face rough handling by defenders. Just because he gets chippy with defenders hardly makes him a poor teammate.

      He certainly has learned how to treat his teammates at least well enough that they feed him the ball, that might not make him little miss sunshine, but his productivity is more than enough to offset any ruffled feathers he may cause.

      • I’ve never read anything to the effect that Clint’s chippy behavior on the field upsets his teammates.

        At Fulham and Spurs he averaged about 40 appearances a season which means he was a regular. I guess that means he wasn’t that big a prikkk to them.

    • Diego Costa……… Suarez……. Maradona……. Zidane………..Zlatan…….Tevez……. shall I go on Tim D?

    • Assuming facts not in evidence. Do you know him? Have you talked to people who do? I saw an interview with him while he was at Fulham after he had had a winning goal and one of his teammates broke in to sing his praises, saying how hard he worked in practice, put in extra time, etc. I have never seen anything that indicates he is a problem in the locker room or is unliked or unrespected by his teammates. Have you? In fact, when he was appointed captain of the USMNT, the report was that he wasn’t one who talked a lot, but led by example. He plays hard and leaves it all out on the field–the kind of player you don’t like to play against, but love to have on your team, is how it seems to me.

  1. I would take LD at his best, over CD at his best, any day of the week.

    Despite the slight talent margin that LD holds over Clint, he seemed so much more humble. Clint just seems like a prikkk to me.

    • If you ask me, Clint seems like a lot tougher player than LD. Both players could score with either foot. CD played longer at a higher level at the club level and I think is more skilled with the ball at his feet. LD was a better passer and better with dead ball services and has more speed. CD is much better in the air and can mix things up with physical players much better than LD. So, it kind of depends on what you need or are looking for in a player and what the situation demands as to which is a better fit.

  2. What are the actual odds Dempsey will be on the 2018 WC squad? And would you bet against him scoring in the tournament?

    1st american to score in 4 WC’s? Yes I would think

    • 50/50, assuming he stays healthy and in form. Proven reliable goal scorers at that level are very rare.

      Clint will be about the same age as Klose was when he was the starting striker for Germany on Brazil.

    • As he gets older, it will likely not be his skill, smarts, or even quickness that causes him to drop off the USMNT, but rather it will be the increasing time it will take for him to recover from all the little injuries professional soccer players face. If he isn’t able to play in a good fraction of his team’s matches, he will be of less use to them and to the USMNT if he cannot be counted on the be healthy. Some guys seem to be more resilient, but it is hard to tell by past performance, for example, Cherundelo went form scarcely missing a game to missing large stretches in a fairly short amount of time.

    • A lot depends on what happens between now and then, but if I had to bet I would say about 1 in 3 that he makes the team as a poacher who would come on in the last 15 minutes to try and give the US a late goal

  3. MLS needs to start recruiting players from 2nd divisions in England, Italy, Germany, Spain.

    Offer those players 300-450 K a year and we will suddenly have lots of top talent. 2nd divisions among the top 5 pay very low wages so it would not be impossible for MLS to grab some steals

    • No. The US needs to start PRODUCING players that are at least as good as those in the German, English,Spanish or Italian second division. You cannot buy your way to being a top league. You have to develop quality players.

      • you absolutely can buy your way into being a top league, you just have to have a lot of money– one thing the US has yet can’t use due to the sal cap.

        people mistake a country’s NT and a country’s pro league often. the EPL isn’t good solely because of English players. the vast majority of EPL stars are not English. the EPL is good because of the clubs have the ability ( from the demand of the fan base) to afford the best talent from wherever in the world. the clubs bring in the talent and THAT makes them the top league, NOT the idea of “lets train our country’s prospects better!”

        developing quality players is key as well but that also takes a long time to slowly upgrade the training and change the culture of the sport, gaining a larger pool of kids to hopefully/eventually become a soccer star.

        the quickest way to catch up to a top league, since they all have had a head start in the PRODUCING (etc), is by buying the same players from the top leagues. hypothetically, if every MLS team bought the entire team of an EPL team then would the MLS not be a top league? obviously that’s unrealistic but imagine the cap is raise or even removed, VCs and the sorts could funnel money into these clubs and buy the big stars and/or a bunch of great role players to make the league better. US Soccer may not technically be better but MLS will…

      • VCS will only funnel in money when there will return on investment. Unfortunately, you can get all the stars here by overpaying them (you will have to do that to have them leave Europe because of quality or life, history, allure/prestige of existing club/competition), but you would have to have the revenue to counter or support that. Soccer does not have that pull yet. Don bring up Women’s world cup or men’s world cup because that is “event viewing” not regular viewing. The audience HAS to grow. Btw, US has done cap free spending to bring in superstars (NASL) and it failed.

      • Having a great league is not the same thing as having a great national team.

        I don’t care about the league but I do care about the USMNT.

        Compare the Korean League and MLS and compare USMNT and the Korean national team.

        Tell me which country has more population and greater resources.

        Tell me why Korea seems to be able to produce players like
        Ji Dong- won, Ki Sung-yueng, Lee Chung-yong, Koo Ja-cheol, Son Heung-min, Park Joo-ho, all midfielders in the BPL or the Bundesliga

        Not to mention Park Ji-Sun who used to play for Manchester United.and was on a BPL champion and a Champion’s League winner.

    • How would “recruiting players from 2nd divisions in England, Italy, Germany, Spain” lead to “suddenly [having] lots of top talent?”

    • I have thought that signing players like Giles Barnes, Nigel Reo-Coker, Liam Ridgewell, etc. is a good way to go. They weren’t stars in the EPL, but have considerable EPL experience on teams in the mid table area and are pretty good quality, serviceable p[layers who don’t cost an arm and a leg and upgrade MLS quality. Other examples include Barnetta, Cheryiot (sp?) and others of that type from other top European leagues who are maybe in their late 20’s or early 30’s and still have at least 3 or 4 good years left

  4. After nearly 20 years of MLS where would you rank it among the European leagues or Latin American leagues? Is it similar to Bundesliga 2? How smaller is it a league than say liga MX? Is it at all possible to see it becoming one of the worlda top leagues by 2025/30?

    • Ill bite….IMO its on par with the top Championship teams and lower Prem. MLS’s top 2 or three teams would likely be around that 13/14 spot in England’s top league . Probably a better league TOP TO BOTTOM than all of Scandinavia, Portugal,Scotland, Belgium and Turkish leagues. Id say its quite similar to Bund 2, I could see that being a close competition. Liga MX is much deeper in talent but that gap is closing fast. MLS is a top 3 league in all of the Americas right now and its current pace, will be a top 4 world league within a decade.

      • The top 2 or 3 MLS teams would do well to just avoid relegation. While there are some quality players on MLS rosters, however at the bottom end of the roster there is a huge drop off and that’s what would kill all MLS teams especially throughout the course of a season. There is also no way we will be a top 4 league within the decade unless the next CBA raises the cap to 15 mil and with 5 DP slots.

      • agree. during ives latest live chat someone asked him if the galaxy could survive relegation and he said it would be tough because the PL has so much depth.

      • My nitpick would be the Portuguese league. Their top teams do pretty well in both the CL and Europa League. Not sure MLS is equal to Portugal.

    • We are improving but still only on quality of the Championship with wages on par with League 1

      The cap is 3 million and needs to be tripled by 2020 IMO.

      MLS will not fail. Soccer is gonna take over the country.

      • I concur.
        The gradually increasing drop-off in participation with American football due to parental, government and medical associations’ pressure secondary to the growing evidence on concussions and chronic traumatic encephalopathy will also feed the growth of soccer.
        Generations of children and parents exposed to the joys of quality soccer via cable television, and the growth in the quality of live socccer, HS/prep, collegiate and professional, as well as the FIFA reform movement, the delirious success of the USWNT, etc. – all are harbingers of continued steady growth in the popularity, credibilty and quality of men’s and women’s soccer in the United States.
        Amongst other factors.

    • do not lie to me

      “After nearly 20 years of MLS where would you rank it among the European leagues or Latin American leagues? Is it similar to Bundesliga 2? How smaller is it a league than say liga MX? Is it at all possible to see it becoming one of the worlda top leagues by 2025/30?”

      MLS is very hard to compare to the European leagues or Latin American leagues because it is so comparatively new and so fundamentally different.

      Most every league has got a few dominant teams at the top; a bunch of mid table teams and then the relegation battlers. The Galaxy is far and away MLS’ dominant team then there a few possible pretenders and then everyone else.

      Without relegation, there are much fewer “Must Win Games” and a lot of basically meaningless ones. Given that Pablo just got re- signed by the Rapids to be the manager next year after an awful year, one has to question the desire of MLS teams to actually win anything.

      What competitive fire?

      The Champion is the winner of the MLS Cup but the Cup is won by the team that navigates the playoffs the best. The regular season is rendered meaningless, except to the team that wins the Supporters Shield and as far as I know the only people who care about that is the team that wins it.

      In terms of player development MLS has yet to produce a proven top flight outfield player. Of course, comparatively speaking MLS player development is still in its infancy.

      I suspect you are mostly interested in on the field issues and the only way you can determine that is to play teams from other leagues in a serious competition where both teams are in mid-season form and both sides actually care.

      The CONCACAF champions’ league is weird competition because MLS teams play a lot of it when they are in pre-season and the Mexican teams usually send B teams. It would be better if everyone was in mid season form and everyone took it seriously.

      Other than that, MLS teams only play other leagues in friendlies and the US is the only country I know of where fans take friendlies at all seriously.

      The best MLS teams have plenty of talent who could do well abroad but that doesn’t mean MLS teams would do well, for example, in the Championship or BL2.

      As I said before, comparatively speaking, they don’t get tested a lot

      • ^ This is the best explanation.

        It is very hard to compare without playing against each other. All you can do is compare the quality of players, quality of the teams and depth. A lot of fans here tend to over-value MLS or under-value it.

        MLS team depth doesn’t really go below 13 players without serious dropping off. If you look in terms of just 1st 11, MLS is 4th best in the Americans (I would think/hope from what I watched), behind Brasileiro Campeanto, Argentina and Liga MX, but there also teams from Colombia/Chile that are better than any MLS teams (e.g Nacional).

        This is hard because styles of play are different, Latin American teams tend to be more technical. English teams are not as technical and have similar style to MLS. As such, from what I saw, based on 1st 11/13 players (not taking into account depth), MLS is top League 1 and top Championship. The best team would do well to avoid EPL relegation, but depth would KILL any MLS team.

      • At least Eurosport does cover MLS and has live MLS games. Whether they think it is good soccer or simply hedging a bet on the future of US soccer is an open question, but someone in Europe thinks MLS is worth coverage for some reason.

    • Their ratings are atrocious. Like 5 digit per live game (under 100,000). I watch Cologne games ( I used to live there) and couple games Americans play in, but the presentation is atrocious. I get NBC SN, FOX Sports, Bein and Fox Sports has the WORST presentation.


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