Weekly Soccer Column: Landon Donovan named U.S. National Team Captain for final game Friday

Read more about the conclusion of Landon Donovan’s U.S. career on Friday in this week’s column.

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Former U.S. teammate joins growing number of women who see Hope Solo double standard as roster is named for World Cup qualifying

A now-retired former teammate has joined other female commentators blasting U.S. Soccer for allowing goalkeeper Hope Solo to keep playing while domestic abuse allegations remain unresolved.

Coach Jill Ellis, meanwhile, essentially punted when asked about Solo today in a conference call with reporters to discuss the roster:

“I’ve had a lot of thought and discussion within U.S. Soccer and certainly we acknowledge these are very serious issues,” Ellis said. “But after careful thought and consideration, we determined to stand by our decision to let the legal process play out and have Hope remain with the team.”

The column appeared Monday in USA Today and in emails circulated to media outlets. Read it after the jump.

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Watch: Monday Major League Soccer rewind, Landon Donovan’s last U.S. game and more

LDUSMNT

The image above was included by U.S. Soccer this morning as they announced the 21-player roster for Friday’s game against Ecuador that included the LA Galaxy’s Omar Gonzalez in addition to Landon Donovan, set to make his 157th and final U.S. appearance in the wake of Saturday’s latest Galaxy victory.

I’ll have more on Donovan in Tuesday’s column, in addition to today’s USWNT roster announcement for the beginning of World Cup qualification, which begins against a backdrop of litigation and other legal action over the turf in Canada and goalkeeper Hope Solo’s alleged domestic violence issues.

Meanwhile, the Goats are almost extinct it appears even as they finally post a win Sunday in Carson

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English Premier League Preview: NBCSN TV schedule includes Chelsea-Arsenal London derby Sunday

Liverpool-West Bromwich Albion kicks off the weekend coverage at 7 a.m. Saturday on NBCSN, while Aston Villa-Manchester City follows at 9:30 a.m. on NBC.

The complete television schedule is here.

An interactive guide to all the BPL games is here.

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Reports of a Chivas USA hiatus gather steam

chivasusaReports that Chivas USA could go on hiatus for as long as two years while a stadium is built in the Los Angeles area have gained more credence with ESPNFC expanding upon an earlier Sports Illustrated story that had much the same theme.

The club is certainly weakening the MLS brand overall, while boring most soccer fans to tears year after pathetic year.

Personally, I’m not convinced any club can find a suitable site it will find successful unless that’s in downtown LA, but at least we could all be rid of the perennial embarrassment that is Chivas USA once and for all.

Experienced heads will be needed and I’m not sure if that description fits Alexi Lalas, who almost wrecked the Galaxy when he was in charge of the MLS flagship.

Good luck, guys:

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Weekly Soccer Column: Classy Landon Donovan, LA Galaxy turn on the style in pursuit of final MLS Cup of his career

The Galaxy are cruising and clearly look like the class of MLS at the moment, as this week’s soccer column illustrates.

Indeed, so spectacular are the Galaxy, it’s getting difficult to decide which highlight reel goal is the best:

You decide:

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Major League Soccer Sunday: Record-setting Landon Donovan and rampant Galaxy slaughter New York Red Bulls

Tim Cahill was anonymous. Thierry Henry was exasperated. And the Red Bulls in general were pathetic with a couple of the worst blunders that led to goals we’ve seen all year long at StubHub.

On the other hand, Landon Donovan just seems to get better as retirement approaches with a memorable game offensively and defensively. Robbie Keane is getting more audacious and in complete command of his game as he matures. And Gyasi Zardes is a future USMNT star in the making.

Said NYRB coach Mike Petke: “It’s best team that we faced all year, by a long shot.”

Phil Collin’s game story is here.

Next for the Galaxy: Toronto FC at StubHub Center Saturday

I’ll have more in Tuesday’s column.

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