Good Monday morning Mane Landers! I hope everyone enjoyed the Thanksgiving Day celebration and the shopping sales that followed. It's time to shift into year-end holiday mode, but that doesn't stop all the soccer news. So let's get started and go to the links!
MLS Cup Final is Set
The Portland Timbers will visit the Columbus Crew in Major League Soccer's final match. The MLS playoffs picked back up Sunday night for the second leg of the conference finals, and in the first match of the doubleheader, the Timbers marched into Frisco, TX and drew with the home team, 2-2. Portland won the series, 5-3 on aggregate. My favorite moment of the match was Lucas Melano's goal which clinched it for the Timbers in the 95th minute.
The nightcap match saw the New York Red Bulls take on the Columbus Crew. The Crew managed to hang on in a wild finish to host the Timbers in the MLS Cup final on Dec. 6. The Red Bulls end up winning, 1-0, but failed to overcome the aggregate advantage Columbus had. The Supporter Shield winners will once again be watching the final instead of playing for the MLS Cup.
No Lions in MLS Best XI
Major League Soccer announced its Best XI for the 2015 season yesterday and there weren't any Orlando City players on the team, which isn't too surprising given where the Lions finished. New York Red Bulls, FC Dallas and Columbus Crew each placed two players on the team. There were 10 players who made the team for the first time, including Sebastian Giovinco, because obviously. Here's the full Best XI.
Qatar's World Cup Affected by Workers' Conditions?
FIFA rumblings never go away. With the election for the presidency happening at the start of 2016, popular candidate Prince Ali Al Hussein said Sunday that if he's elected that Qatar will still not lose hosting the World Cup, but alleged workers' rights violations could impact Qatar going forward. With change in FIFA coming at a snail's pace, I'm looking forward to more John Oliver rants on FIFA.
No Neo-Nazis in MLS
You know who fought Nazis? Indiana Jones. You know who fought neo-Nazis? The Empire Supporters Club. Vice Sports published a story on the supporter group, shining the light on the early history of the group and the conflict they had with neo-Nazis who attempted to dictate the direction of the supporters club. The relations between the supporter groups for the Lions will never turn out like that, thankfully.
Although no players from Orlando City made the cut for MLS Best XI, former NYCFC manager Jason Kreis provided MLS his picks for best XI.
Kreis deemed that none of his former players deserved a mention in his best XI, but Orlando City captain Kaká was in his picks for the midfield...Former England boss, Hope Powell, gives her view on women's football in Africa while working on behalf of FIFA...The Final Four in NCAA women's soccer is set and Florida State is favored to win it all.
Well that's all for now, until next time Mane Landers. Keep Roaring!