By Clemente Lisi – NEW YORK, NY (Feb 22, 2021) US Soccer Players – It's one of those sports truisms that defending a title is usually harder than winning one. In Major League Soccer, it remains more than an adage. Throughout 25 seasons, only three teams have won two consecutive MLS Cups. That should mean that the defending 2020 champions Columbus has a difficult season ahead of them. Having . . .
By Clemente Lisi – NEW YORK, NY (Feb 15, 2021) US Soccer Players – Hernan Losada is like a lot of South American players. He started his playing career in his native Argentina with Independiente. Within a few years of his 2003 debut, the attacking midfielder was playing in Europe. Over the next decade, Losada was with several clubs, including Anderlecht and Beerschot in Belgium. Losada retired . . .
By Clemente Lisi – NEW YORK, NY (Feb 8, 2021) US Soccer Players – The UEFA Champions League returns next week with the start of the knockout stage. It's the place where the continent's best 16 teams now have a shot at the most prestigious club trophy on the planet. It's also the place where different coaching styles and tactics face off against one another for continental supremacy. Barring any . . .
By Clemente Lisi – NEW YORK, NY (Feb 1, 2021) US Soccer Players – The pandemic has uprooted the soccer world, pausing the games almost a year ago. That pause caused a ripple effect, forcing the postponement of domestic seasons and cup competitions that ended up finishing later in the summer. UEFA's Champions League, the biggest club tournament on the planet, concluded two months later in August. . . .
By Clemente Lisi – NEW YORK, NY (Jan 25, 2021) US Soccer Players – The eyes of the soccer world will be on Qatar next week with the start of the FIFA Club World Cup. The 17th edition of the tournament officially kicks off February 4, originally scheduled for this past December, but postponed because of the pandemic. What in theory crowns the world club champion is closer to reality a tournament . . .
By Clemente Lisi – NEW YORK, NY (Jan 18, 2021) US Soccer Players – Having American players break into Serie A has been one of the most difficult things for any USMNT player to achieve. Alexi Lalas became the first in the modern era following his breakout 1994 World Cup on US soil. In the ensuing years, Michael Bradley did well at Chievo Verona and later at Roma. Otherwise, there have been few . . .
By Clemente Lisi – NEW YORK, NY (Jan 11, 2021) US Soccer Players – The new year brings with it the wheeling and dealing of the January transfer market. That allows European clubs, many in need of reinforcements, to add or drop players to their rosters before embarking on the last half of the season. MLS, in the middle of their off season, should feel at least some impact from what takes place over . . .
By Clemente Lisi – NEW YORK, NY (Jan 4, 2020) US Soccer Players – The start of the year brings with it a new set of challenges for the USMNT. 2020 largely grounded the National Team, allowing them to play just four games after the pandemic disrupted the soccer calendar and ultimately halted all sports. That means that 2021 is full of games and tournaments that could have a lasting impact on this . . .
By Clemente Lisi – NEW YORK, NY (Dec 28, 2020) US Soccer Players – 2020 was an unprecedented year loaded with obstacles, rescheduled games, and health protocols. Even when soccer came back, it wasn't the same. Tournaments played in bubbles, no fans allowed into stadiums, and piped in crowd noise became common this year. Despite all of this, enough of the games continued to create a new normal. . . .
By Clemente Lisi – NEW YORK, NY (Dec 21, 2020) US Soccer Players – Soccer jerseys can be iconic or ugly, classic or colorful, and oftentimes attempts at triggering nostalgia. Aside from the built-in market of fans that will buy whatever their team is wearing, jersey sales are the real metric of what people like and what they don't. A nice infographic explaining why this shirt is special only goes . . .