Wednesday's soccer news starts in the Concacaf Champions League with LAFC advancing to the quarterfinals 4-2 on aggregate over Alajuelense after losing the second-leg 2-1 at home. Alajuelense took the lead on the night from an 8th minute penalty, making it 2-0 in the 51st. LAFC's Carlos Vela pulled a goal back in the 81st minute. "We are happy to be around further in the competition, which was . . .
Philadelphia advances in the CCL, Championship win for Middlesbrough
Wednesday's soccer news starts in the Concacaf Champions League, where Philadelphia advanced 4-0 on the night and by the same score on aggregate over Alianza. Playing a man up from the 40th minute, the Union's Damion Lowe scored a minute into stoppage time at Subaru Park. Daniel Gazdag converted a 62nd minute penalty and Andres Perea added goals in the 81st and 84th minutes. Philadelphia . . .
26 players on World Cup squads, MLS on ABC
Friday's soccer news starts with the Bureau of the FIFA Council officially allowing for three extra players on rosters for the 2022 World Cup. The wording here is important, with FIFA specifying that, "The number of players to be included on the final list has been increased to at least 23 and a maximum of 26." Naming the three additional players is not a requirement. The long-rumored tweak to . . .
FIFA’s 2026 World Cup stadiums, Seattle hosts LAFC
Friday's soccer news starts with FIFA announcing the 16 stadiums that will host games during the 2026 World Cup. Toronto's BMO Field and Vancouver's BC Place for Canada, Guadalajara's Estadio Akron, Mexico City's Estadio Azteca, and Monterrey's Estadio BBVA Bancomer for Mexico, and Arlington's AT&T Stadium (Dallas), Atlanta's Mercedes-Benz Stadium, East Rutherford's MetLife Stadium (New . . .
Five substitutes and a changing game
By J Hutcherson (Jun 14, 2022) US Soccer Players - On Monday, the International Football Association Board officially made five substitutes an option for any "top level competition," along with increasing the bench from 12 to 15 players. Neither of these moves were exactly surprising, but they underline issues for the contemporary game. In an era where players, officials, pundits, and fans are . . .
FIFA’s happiest New Year
By J Hutcherson (Jan 4, 2022) US Soccer Players - FIFA president Gianni Infantino's New Year message was about what we've come to expect during the current push for radical changes in world soccer. His organization's focus remains sharp. It's about already positioning the 2022 World Cup as a success while continuing to stump for it happening every other year as part of a revamped international . . .
FIFA and the potential economics of the biennial World Cup
FIFA held its Global Summit yesterday, announcing the results of two new studies focusing on the economic impact of the biennial World Cup proposal. FIFA has yet to bring that proposal to a vote, alongside revamping the international calendar starting in 2025. As understatements go, it's fair to say that both of those agenda items would potentially rework international soccer as we know it. As for . . .
What if FIFA gets its way?
By J Hutcherson (Dec 7, 2021) US Soccer Players - In theory, it's not that difficult to see FIFA's plan for the biennial World Cup as the obvious answer to an equally obvious set of issues. Holding the World Cup every four years uses the same logic as the Olympics with the same problem. Four years is a long time, especially in the short working lives of elite athletes. The calendar will adjust. . . .
The Premier League wants the calendar to balance club and country
Friday's soccer news starts with the Premier League joining those expressing serious concerns over FIFA's proposed revamps to the international soccer calendar. FIFA's plan would replace the multiple international windows with either one lasting the month of October or two with an additional window in March. The idea is to minimize the amount of travel required for players and disruption to club . . .
The future with five subs
Friday's soccer news starts with the temporary five substitute rule. The IFAB that ultimately controls the rules of soccer is now recommending FIFA makes the five subs rule permanent. Adding two additional subs as part of the compacted schedule caused by the pandemic isn't universally implemented, most notably with the Premier League deciding to opt out. In a press statement issued earlier . . .