Aug 20, 2012, 7:30 AM EDT
What we’re thinking, what we’re watching, what’s coming on the blog today and the RASNoD (Random American Soccer Name of the Day). Setting up your day in soccer:
Soccer birthdays: Sevilla striker Álvaro Negredo, a Spanish international who was part of Spain’s Euro 2012 championship side, turns 27.
Big Important Story of the Day: We may know more today about Sergio Aguero’s knee injury. If it’s serious, as feared, defending English Premier League champion Manchester City may wade quickly back into the transfer market before the window closes in a week.
RASNoD (Random American Soccer Name of the Day): Joe Franchino
*Ahead on the blog today: The usual Monday deliverables, like MLS Player of the Week and Team of the Week. We’ll hear more about Richard Farley’s excellent adventures in England, too.
What you should watch on TV: Round 1 of English Premier League play concludes with a nice one: Everton and Tim Howard will try to contain mighty Manchester United, fortified with last week’s signing of former Arsenal marksman Robin van Persie. Match coverage begins at 2:55 p.m. ET on ESPN2.
If the MLS playoffs started today
- D.C. United at Chicago
- Sporting Kansas City vs. Wildcard winner
- New York Red Bulls vs. Houston
- Vancouver Whitecaps at L.A. Galaxy
- San Jose vs. Wildcard winner
- Real Salt Lake vs. Seattle
We’ll leave you with this: I won’t tie this to any particular MLS match from the weekend, but I will say this: Some of Major League Soccer referees may need a re-take on their annual fitness tests. Or perhaps the standards need to be addressed. Because there are some guys out there who do not appear fit enough to keep up with matches, which means they can’t properly do their jobs.
*Always subject to change; you know how it is…
- Liverpool and AC Milan in talks over deal for Mario Balotelli 1
- Atlanta’s new MLS franchise has already sold 14,000 season tickets 7
- No signings in 2015: Barcelona’s transfer ban upheld, FIFA rejects appeal 3
- Report: Tottenham set to raid Manchester United, line up Fellaini, Hernandez deals 6
- Spanish Super Cup: Late goal allows Atlético to claim first leg draw at Real Madrid 0
- UEFA Champions League Roundup: Arsenal held; Athletic takes 1-1 draw out of Naples 1