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Blue Links 9/9

How long until America can produce a Messi or a Ronaldo? Were Sporting lucky to escape New York without two red cards? How close is Kronberg to returning to the lineup?

Rough times continue for the champs
Rough times continue for the champs
Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

The Sporting slide continues and the boys are dropping rapidly in the various power rankings. While SI has the 2nd place team all the way down at 11th, I believe the guys at are little more on target with SKC at 7th. But maybe I am in the minority with that..

Bradley Wright-Phillips' PK against Sporting on Saturday put his season total at 21 goals, only 6 shy of the MLS single season record. looks at the Red Bulls' remaining games and the chances of BWP becoming the new single season Goal King.

Last week, Don Garber and Sunil Gulati spoke about the future and what it will take to produce "world class" players. The signs seem to be encouraging with guys like Besler, Zusi and Yedlin impressing on the world's biggest stage; but Jorge Arangure JR. of VICE Sports is incredibly harsh on Jurgen Klinsman when it comes to US Youth Soccer. His biggest issue with Jurgen seems to be that he is looking at all of his options to obtain players overseas. I understand the idea of wanting to develop homegrown players.. but if guys like Gideon Zelalem and the Parker brothers are interested, why not welcome them? Create competition and set a standard for our own youth guys coming through the ranks.

While Besler will continue to play with a broken bone in his hand, Clint Dempsey is taking a vacation. Speaking of Besler's hand, here is the latest from The Star on him and nearing the return of Eric Kronberg.

Erik Palmer-Brown started all three of the U-20 matches in Argentina including today's 1-1 draw with the Argentinian U-20's.

With the USL Pro regular season complete, looks at Affiliates in Action. Jimmy Nielsen ended his first year as head coach of OKC Energy FC with a 9-14-5 record. Orlando City finished in 1st place, 7 points clear with a record of 19-4-5.

I hate to be the bearer of bad news.. but it looks like Columbus, possessing the top spot in the allocation order, are interested in bringing in Kei Kamara.


That last match against New York was disappointing, but flashes of the Sporting we know and love were there. However, Simon Borg took a look at the match in this week's edition of Instant Replay. He wanted 3 players sent off this match. Besler for his penalty, and both Dwyer (elbow) and Sekagya (retaliation) for their tussle at the end of the first half.

Peter Vermes liked the performance and is encouraged that the team will gain some momentum going into the playoffs:

In this league, you always run into a rough patch somewhere. The question is when do you come out of it and when you do, how is your upswing? I have all the confidence in the world [with] where we’re at. I really do.

Now let us ignore the foul from Besler, and forget (although very difficult) the moment of brilliance from Thierry Henry. Igor was getting forward and creating chances with accurate crosses:

Igorcross1_redbulls14_medium Igorcross2_redbulls14_medium

Graham Zusi's confidence was showing. He was ripping shots and doing Zusi stuff:


The goal was perfect from all three players involved. And congratulations to Dom for tying Preki's record:


Sporting will now head to LA to face Chivas on Saturday night at the StubHub Center. The boys will be looking to stop the losing streak and take all three points from the last place team.