Germany crushed Mexico 4-1 in the semifinals of the Confederations Cup. Mexico had a majority of possession in the game, but was unable to convert that into goals, and was punished by Germany on the other side. For Mexico it was the same old story at a lot of international tournaments: Play really great soccer at times, but then stumble and falter in the knockout rounds. Tom Marshall of ESPNFC talks about what this means for Mexico at next year’s World Cup.
Barcelona have activated their buy back clause on winger Gerard Deulofeu, purchasing him from Everton for a reported 12 million Euros. For those unfamiliar, a lot of times La Liga teams institute a buy back clause in contracts when selling or loaning a player abroad, allowing them to buy back a player after a few years if they so choose. Delofeu has impressed at Everton in the past, and last year on loan to AC Milan, and he’s still only 23, so presumably there is room for him to improve.
There always seems to be talk about when soccer will truly “arrive” in this country, and when it will become a major sport here. While soccer may never be as popular as football or basketball in this country (at least not anytime soon), constantly focusing on what soccer isn’t yet in this country misses what it has already become. A great showcase of this was the U.S. Open cup match between FC Cincinnati and Chicago Fire. FC Cincinnati has only existed for two years, but last year they set USL on fire, less with the results on the field so much as the attendance, and instant fan attraction to the team. With the success of Cincinnati, and the examples of Cascadia and Orlando in MLS, it shows that the sky is the limit for any city with a professional soccer team in this country.
Team USA has a friendly with Ghana on Saturday, and it is their only tune-up game before their first Gold Cup game on July 8th. With only one game to go before the Gold Cup, Bruce Arena will try to balance setting a cohesive lineup, as well as seeing as many players in action that he can. Expect to see a lot of substitutions at the halfway mark. Brian Kellogg of Stars and Stripes FC breaks down all you need to know before the game on Saturday.
It is unsurprising that the two teams that have dominated European football for the past decade, Spain and Germany, will decide the Euro U-21 final. However at the last two major senior tournaments Spain have gone out early, and it is clear they were still trying to adjust after so many of their stars retired from international play. However, Spain seemed to have righted the ship on the senior level, and with young players like Marco Asensio, Saul Niguez, and Gerard Deulofeu starring for the U-21’s, Spain could be heading back to the top of world football sooner rather than later.
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