World Cup Countdown: Tournament TV Tune-ups a plenty


Croatia-Mali is on live as I write this for those of you with GOLTV, while other viewing options this weekend include:

  • 11:30 a.m. Saturday ESPN Deportes Portugal-Greece
  • Noon Saturday BeIN Sports Italy-Ireland
  • Noon Saturday Univision and ESPN News Mexico-Ecuador
  • 11 a.m. Sunday ESPN2 USA-Turkey
  • 11:30 a.m. Sunday Univision Deportes and ESPN3 Germany-Cameroon
  • 2 p.m. Sunday Univision Deportes and ESPN3 France-Paraguay
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Thursday Kicks: LA Galaxy’s Landon Donovan shares World Cup memories, CD Guadalajara in Carson, MLS in Las Vegas and more

With Landon Donovan pretty much the senior member of the U.S. Men’s National Team these days and perhaps on the brink of international retirement after the World Cup, who better to look back on his long history of World Cup participation and reminisce.

Also:

  • Two goals by Travis Bowen and strikes from former Cal State Dominguez Hills midfielder Alejandro Covarrubias, Bradley Diallo, Jack McBean and Aleksandar Đoković gave the LA Galaxy II an easy 6-1 U.S. Open Cup victory Wednesday over Thousand Oaks-based amateur team Cal FC at the StubHub Center track and field stadium before a crowd of just over 400. The Galaxy’s reserve squad advances to the third round of the knockout tournament May 28 in Carson against PSA Elite, which progressed when the San Diego Flash forfeited its game.
  • Also USL Pro side Sacramento Republic defeated the Ventura County Fusion 2-1 Wednesday and will meet Fresno Fuego in the next round.
  • CD Guadalajara and Cruz Azul play a preseason Liga MX game at 8 p.m. July 9 at StubHub Center, it was announced today. Tickets go on sale May 22.
  • Vegas remains a long-shot MLS expansion market.
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Wednesday Kicks: Club Tijuana plays for spot in CONCACAF Champions League final tonight & more

Assorted news and nuggets:

  • The Xolos play Cruz Azul at 5 o’clock tonight (live on Fox Sports 1) up a goal from last week’s first leg with a place in the CONCACAF Champions league final against Toluca at stake.
  • Independent promoters of soccer games have had a spotty history at best in Southern California, but the Galaxy have joined forces with one to stage the 2014 Legends Cup featuring retired Mexican and U.S. players at 4 p.m. June 1 at StubHub Center. Participating players include Paco Palencia, Luis Hernandez, Alberto Garcia Aspe, Jorge Campos, Paul Caligiuri, Eric Wynalda, Brian Ching, and John O’Brien.
  • Next for MLS: Atlanta
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Club Tijuana — Southern California’s team — in CONCACAF Champions League action tonight

xoloslogoSo that’s a bit of an overstatement.

But with all the MLS clubs eliminated from the tournament, a Liga MX team with a raft of Americans on their roster who are watched regularly by thousands of U.S.-based fans who cross the border are the closest thing we’ve got to a local club still in the CONCACAF Champions League.

Club Tijuana plays Cruz Azul at 7 o’clock tonight on Fox Sports 2, FoxSoccer2go.com and on Univision Deportes (Fox Soccer Plus shows the game on delay at 9 p.m..).

Alajuelense-Toluca is on Galavision at 5 p.m., BTW.

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CONCACAF Champions League Preview: LA Galaxy at Xolos tonight in Tijuana

So it was a soft goal for Tijuana to concede and a lucky one for the Galaxy to score, but the Galaxy have a slim one-goal cushion after last week’s first leg win in Carson as American clubs look to best their Mexican counterparts this weekend in the oft-overlooked CONCACAF Champions League.

I take a look at the U.S. chances in this week’s column.

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Tuesday Kicks: Mexico’s Jorge Campos and other retired greats to play in Los Angeles and more

*Exhibition games involving Latin American clubs and players have a spotty history of actually happening (to put it mildly) in Los Angeles, so buyer beware, but an April 26  indoor game featuring retired stars from Mexico and El Salvador was announced today at a press conference at the Coliseum.

Players will include former Galaxy greats Jorge Campos and Mauricio Cienfuegos, former Chivas USA stars Claudio Suarez and Ramon Ramirez and former D.C. United striker Raul Diaz Arce.

Tickets to ShowGoal Los Angeles, as it’s called, go on sale Thursday starting at $25.

*The Galaxy made their opponents look good this weekend on the field and off it. After Real Salt Lake left Southern California with a 1-0 Saturday, goalscorer Joao Plata earned the top spot in the Castrol Index and RSL goalkeeper Nick Rimando was ranked third after saving Robbie Keane’s penalty kick.

Chivas USA defender Bobby Burling, who scored the winner over the Chicago Fire Sunday, checked in at No. 6. The Castrol Index is here.

*Finally, Galaxy President Chris Klein was named to the Sports Business Journal’s 40 under 40 list.

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Weekly Soccer Column: LA Galaxy-Club Tijuana CONCACAF Champions League Preview and more

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So, it was pretty mild, but did the Galaxy’s Omar Gonzalez just diss U.S. Men’s National Team teammate Herculez Gomez in the above video?

The San Jose Earthquakes play tonight in the CCL, while the Galaxy’s encounter with Club Tijuana in Carson Wednesday is the subject of today’s column, which also looks at who Chivas USA defender Bobby Burling dedicated his winning goal to Sunday in the 3-2 defeat of the Chicago Fire.
More on all the CONCACAF Champions League games is here.

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Friday Kicks: Mexico World Cup Kit Unveiled, LA Galaxy, Chivas USA Preseason Games & More


If you love futbol, it’s apt that the new Mexico away kit went on sale today.

Here’s more on the design from adidas:

The new away kit of the Mexican team stands out through an innovative combination of red and black, reinterpreting classic jerseys of the national team worn in previous World Cups. This color combination was first used in Uruguay 1930 through to Sweden 1958.

 

The color in the jersey pays homage to the passion, union and the combative spirit reflected in the red color of the Mexican flag. The shirt´s design is completed with black elements, around the v-neck, the borders of the sleeves and the traditional adidas three stripes, which provide elegance to the jersey’s design.

 

The crest is placed at the height of the heart featuring a dichromatic application. Below it, a black fretwork graphic is repeated subtlety in red tones down the front of the shirt.

 

The colors of the Mexican flag are present at the back of the jersey through the stripe located under the shoulders where the word “México” is framed in green, white and red. The rest of the kit is complemented by black shorts and red socks.

Buy it here (along with other adidas World Cup kits the company has released this week).

*The Galaxy are in Fresno this weekend taking on the San Jose Earthquakes Saturday. A preview is here.

And here’s a wrap of the Thursday exhibition mentioned in the above article that marked the first-ever game of the Galaxy II, the club’s new USL Pro affiliate.

 

The Galaxy also announced their 21-game Time Warner Cable television schedule today, but perhaps the biggest news is this:

*Finally, Chivas USA is in action Sunday in Las Vegas.

The club also announced today that the club signed SuperDraft Second-Round pick Thomas McNamara.  He’s been in camp with the club all along.

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Mexican League Veteran Adolfo “Bofo” Bautista Finally Joins Chivas USA


Are Chivas USA finally getting serious?

In one of the biggest signings in club history, Chivas USA took another tentative step toward credibility today, announcing the signing of Adolfo “Bofo” Bautista from Atletico San Luis as a free agent.

It’s a logical move for a club — and player — who experienced major success at mothership CD Guadalajara.

The big question: Can a player who turns 35 in May still make an impact on MLS?

Here’s more from the club press release:

Born in the Mexican state of Guanajuato, Bautista began his professional career with C.D. Estudiantes Tecos in 1998.

The striker’s career grew with his arrival to Monarcas Morelia beginning in 2002, where he helped lead his new club to two finals. Bautista, commonly known in the soccer world as “Bofo,” moved on to a season with CF Pachuca, where he celebrated his first title as a member of the Tuzos.

The six-foot forward then entered one of the most celebrated stages of his career in 2004 with Chivas Guadalajara, where helped lead the Rebaño Sagrado to two finals, including the 2006 title under the guidance of former Mexican National Team Coach Jose Manuel de la Torre. It was in the 2006 Apertura Championship where the Red-and-White player became the final’s hero by scoring the clinching goal against Deportivo Toluca F.C. in the second leg.

Bautista was also a key figure in the club’s historic run in 2010 to the final of the prestigious Copa Libertadores during his second stint with the club under former Chivas USA Head Coach Jose Luis “Güero” Real.

At the international level, Bautista made his debut with Mexico’s National Team under Javier Aguirre on Jan. 19, 2002 in a 1-0 victory over El Salvador.

With 38 caps and 11 goals with El Tri, the forward was one of the 23-man roster that participated in the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. In addition, “Bofo” was part of the Mexican squads that attended the Copa America Peru 2004 and Venezuela 2007.

Bautista also served stints with Chiapas FC as well as Queretaro FC.

UPDATED

Here’s a sampling of fan reaction via twitter to the move:

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