No wacky images and punchlines intermixed today. It’s straight football, save for some shade thrown Orlando’s way, and not the palm tree-kind.
Noob’s punch-drunk tired from waaaay too much OT at my RL job, so your Saturday mini-previews are a touch on the quick-and-dirtied side.
Still, there’s real info here. Noob will always serve us, the newish American fans of the global game.
NYCFC vs. D.C. United – Major League Soccer
Noob recklessly called out Wayne Rooney recently for not helping his team beat any playoff-caliber teams in their streak. Some lessons are learned harder than others.
Rooney went out and had a goal and two assists, beat the Atlanta 3-1. I don’t care that it was at home, that’s an impressive win. They’re’ in 8th in the East and six points out of the sixth and final Playoff slot still but they’ve also played a couple fewer games than most everyone else.
Meanwhile, NYCFC are official fading. Oh, they’ll still make the Playoffs, are #3 in the East. But last outing they lost at home to New England, which hadn’t won a match in weeks upon weeks.
B. Portland Timbers vs. Colorado Rapids – Major League Soccer
Seconds on the MLS, please!
Portland had been bleeding all over themselves which a four-match losing streak. They staunched things now, if just, with a draw and win over two non-playoff sides.
That leaves them tied for 5th in the West. They won’t stay afloat if that don’t find some more offense quickly though. Not that the lowly Rapids should present a problem.
RESULT: Portland 2-0
Sporting Kansas City vs. Orlando City – Major League Soccer
Noob doesn’t normally go all-in with any league on any one date, but with this being the International Break in Europe, schedules the world over are affected, lighter today.
KC had their three-game win streak shut down by streaking Seattle, 1-3 on the road. They’re in 3rd now, after having led the West so much of the season. Is there anything that can happen to help their noble cause, climb higher in the table?
Yes. A visit from awful Orlando will cure what ails most anyone. Listen to The Management on this, as Noob has: Nothing good can ultimately be derived when you build a city on a swamp. This is the reason for Orlando’s suckitude. It’s almost science. They haven’t won a match since July 14.
RESULT: KC 1-0 Sporting back to #B
England vs. Spain – UEFA Nations League
Please visit the most recent Midweek Edition post for some relatively brief info on this new event. England and Spain are ranked 6th and 9th, respectively, by FIFA.
RESULT: Spain 1-2
Louisville FC vs. FC Cincinnati – United Soccer League
The defending champs host the East’s current #1 who are also MLS-bound next year. This may be the best rivalry in division two.
CInci last lost a league match in May. But that was at home to Louisville. FCC may have already run away with the conference #1 seed for the playoffs, but their hosts today will have none of it.
St. Louis FC vs. Reno 1868 – United Soccer League
We now move West and further down a table where any kind of playoff berth is at stake.
St. Louis won all through August to climb up to 9th place, one spot shy of a postseason possibility. Last year’s record-setting offense from Reno has cooled some, but they are still above the line, in 7th. Remember: Eight from each conference make the Playoffs.
STL won the first matchup with Reno 1-2 back in July.
RESULT: STL 1-0 These two are now tied for 8th
Utah Royals vs. Chicago Red Stars – National Women’s Soccer League
Chicago are now set to be the #4 seed for the postseason. Utah are in 5th, eliminated. Still, a win or draw today would see their first-ever season above .500.
RESULT: Utah 2-1
Quorn vs. Atherstone Town – England FA Cup
This is the First Qualifying Round, the third of several rounds which happen before the bigger leagues’ teams enter the competition.
Quorn are from the 9th tier of English football, out of the Leicester area. Their having a very poor start in the Midland League’s Premier Division.
A’Town play in the Midland League. Its top division is also Tier-Nine. But these fellow play in this league’s second division. They’re #B in the standings there. Noob handicaps them as only a one-goal underdog on the road today.
RESULT: Atherstone Town 0-1
Morocco vs. Malawi – African Cup of Nations qualification
They’re only a game into the qualifying tournament, in which everyone but the host nation has to play to get into the actual Cup. Morocco is FIFA-ranked #46 to Malawi’s #123. The match might not be competitive today based on that, but Noob picked this one out of many because of an interesting tidbit discovered.
Morocco were not initially going to be allowed to enter at all. They dropped out of hosting this event two years ago, and so were suspended from it for two two-year cycles.
RESULT: Morocco 3-0 Youssef En-Nesyri, who plays for La Liga’s CD Leganes, with a pair of goals.
San Francisco vs. Santa Gema – Panama National League
A half dozen matches into their Apertura (first half-season), Santa Gema are the only undefeated team remaining.
SF are in a three-way tie for 3rd. Like their guests today, they sacrifice defense for goal-scoring. Noob likes S.G. 2-3 in a bit of a shootout.
RESULT: Santa Gema 1-2