The soccer news starts with an old issue for club and country in the United States. Major League Soccer's insistence on playing through the international breaks. MLS has games on the schedule during the September window, and that's an issue for USMNT coach Gregg Berhalter.
In a press conference following the announcement of his squad for the September friendlies, Berhalter confirmed that he left out Toronto players due to their MLS schedule.
"One thing I’ve been a little bit disappointed in is the MLS teams opting to play in FIFA windows," Berhalter said. "It’s infringing on the time we have with players. I understand their situation in not wanting to play mid-week games during the year, but it also puts us in a difficult spot."
A USMNT coach complaining about the MLS schedule is nothing new. Neither are the broader questions about why it's so difficult for MLS to put together a schedule that acknowledges the international windows. Part of the game is the overall FIFA calendar and choosing to play through isn't really a choice. As Berhalter said, it's an infringement with club placing itself over country. Since the US Soccer Federation is the sanctioning body for MLS as its topflight, there's the assumption that they're also the ones in the position to enforce FIFA's calendar. Instead, MLS plays on.
Montreal beat Vancouver 2-1 in MLS. Yordy Reyna put Vancouver up on the road in the 17th minute. Montreal goalkeeper Evan Bush blocked two penalties after a 21st minute foul in the box with VAR causing a retake due to encroachment. An own-goal leveled the score in the 35th with Maxi Urruti scoring for the impact in the 37th minute.
"I think that the key point in the game is that penalty shot situation that I totally disagree," Whitecaps coach Marc Dos Santos said. "It's a huge mistake. These calls are not called. There's no chance it's called back in Atlanta, Seattle, in LA no chance. But it's called right now because we don't have the full respect right now of officials and that's going to change. It shouldn't be called. It needs to be clear and obvious to be called back.… It's ridiculous."
On the same day he got a call-up with the USMNT, Sergino Dest started in the Champions League for Ajax, shutting out Apoel Nicosia 2-0 at home to take their playoff series 2-0 on aggregate. Edson Alvarez opened the scoring in the 43rd minute with Dusan Tadic doubling the lead in the 80th. Ajax goalkeeper Andre Onana didn't have to make a save to keep the clean sheet.
In the League Cup, Matthew Olosunde's Rotherham United lost 1-0 at home to Sheffield Wednesday. The game's only goal came six minutes into stoppage time. In Liga MX, Ventura Alvarado's Necaxa drew 1-1 at home with Toluca. Mauro Quiroga put Necaxa up in the 12th minute with Toluca equalizing in the 37th.
Did Not Play: Ethan Horvath (Club Brugge 2 - LASK 1, 3-1 on aggregate), Geoff Cameron (QPR 0 - Portsmouth 2), Timothy Weah (Lille 3 - St Etienne 0), William Yarbrough (Club Leon 2 - Santos Laguna 2)
Yahoo Sports' Leander Schaerlaeckens looks at Ajax as the example of a club on a budget in the Champions League. BBC Sport reports on the successful takeover of Bolton Wanderers. The Guardian's David Conn lists what the Football League should do after expelling Bury. Football365's Seb Stafford-Bloor takes issue with what is happening with soccer journalism.
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