Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America Classifieds
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
MLS teams face tough road tests
by Ridge Mahoney, August 4th, 2009 7AM

MOST READ

MOST COMMENTED

[CONCACAF CHAMPIONS LEAGUE] Toronto FC and D.C. United need better performances and results than they attained in the first legs when they square off against Puerto Rico Islanders and Luis Angel Firpo, respectively, in the away matches of their Concacaf Champions League series Tuesday.
 
After tying New England, 1-1, at Gillette Stadium on Saturday, TFC arrived in Puerto Rico Sunday afternoon trailing 1-0 from the first leg at BMO Field last week. Ex-Islander and Puerto Rico captain Marco Velez received a hearty welcome from fans and journalists at the airport. He played 86 games for the USL-1 Islanders before coming to Toronto last season.

"It is great to be back home," said Velez. "People in Puerto Rico are very passionate about soccer and I have had some very good times here. It's nice because I get to visit for a few days and there will be plenty of support from my family here to watch the game."

TFC head coach Chris Cummins hopes midfielder Amado Guevara, who has sat out the last two games with a rib injury, will be able to play in the second leg (TV: Fox Soccer Channel, live, 8 p.m. ET). A deep-lying midfield role that he has played in road games produced results like a 3-1 win in San Jose last month.

Of the 1-0 loss at BMO Field last week, Cummins said, "We were disappointed with the result and our performance last week and we know it will be difficult to break them down, but we have to be positive."

United also played an MLS road game last week, falling to Houston, 4-3, at Robertson Stadium after conceding three goals in three minutes near the end of the first half. It tied Firpo, 1-1, at RFK Stadium a week ago in the first leg.
 
"We felt we were the better team at home and should've expected to win against Firpo," said defender Bryan Namoff. "But now we have to go there and show that we're the better team overall, regardless of being away."

After falling behind, 3-0, United switched from its usual 3-5-2 formation to a four-man back line, and coach Tom Soehn said using four in the back against Firpo is a possibility for the return match (TV: Fox Soccer Channel, live, 10 p.m. ET). It conceded a bad goal against Firpo in the first leg when defender Greg Janicki gave the ball right to Mario Benitez, who rifled a shot past goalie Milos Kocic.

"A lot of times it's mistakes on our part, which has either caused a goal or led to a goal, and it's just a frustrating time where these types of mistakes keep continuing to happen," said Namoff. "It's problematic."

United equalized with a Jaime Moreno penalty near the end of the first half and despite threatening several times failed to score the vital second goal. Soehn must decide whether to go with Kocic again; after conceding four in Houston, keeper Josh Wicks may not be ready for a tough foe in a harsh environment.



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
What They're Saying: Bradley Wright-Phillips    
"I thought Jermaine Jones reffed a good game today." -- New York Red Bull Bradley Wright-Phillips ...
The Good, the Bad and -- Messi conquers Spain     
[EUROPE IN A NUTSHELL] A Liverpool player falls asleep watching his team lose, a French golazo ...
Wright-Phillips befuddled, Donovan confident    
[MLS PLAYOFFS: Reaction] In a match that produced 10 yellow cards -- the most for an ...
A cavalcade of Bundesliga own goals     
[VIDEO PICK: Off the Post] World Cup champion Christoph Kramer scoring a 40-yard own goal earlier ...
What They're Saying: Sigi Schmid    
"If we weren't creating chances, I'd be concerned. But we're creating chances and we had some ...
NCAA Division I Women's Tournament Scoreboard    
[ROUNDUP: Sunday] Top-ranked UCLA needed a goal from Sam Mewis in the 88th minute to beat ...
U.S. Abroad: Weekend Hot (and Cold) List    
Aron Johannsson scored his first goal in more than seven months for AZ in its 1-0 ...
WFC2 to set up shop on UBC campus    
[MLS SPOTLIGHT] The Vancouver Whitecaps became the seventh MLS club to launch a second team in ...
Youth Boys Report: U.S. U-17s take third in Chile    
The U.S. under-17 national team fell to Brazil, 4-3, in its second game at the Copa ...
Youth Boys Report: Brazil edges U.S. U-17s in thriller    
The U.S. under-17 national team fell to Brazil, 4-3, in its second game at the Copa ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives