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Author Archive for Graham Parker

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Sigi Schmid’s contribution helped shape the very ground MLS stands on

The most successful manager in MLS history, with Bruce Arena, topped a tree including virtually every active coach in the leagueIn the summer of 2016, as the LA Galaxy and Seattle Sounders prepared to face each other in an MLS regular season game, a gr…

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Fidgety MLS changes playoffs again – this time for the better

It can be wearying to watch the league tweak the postseason again and again. But there is a certain logic behind the most recent changesMLS president Mark Abbott has a fondness for describing the league as “nimble”. It’s a characterization that serves …

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‘The wisdom was you needed a Beckham’: What can Atlanta’s rise teach MLS?

Graham Parker speaks with Atlanta United president Darren Eales on continuing their improbable rise and learning from their peersIt could have been so different.As the second-half wore on, and it became increasingly obvious that Atlanta were going to w…

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MLS Cup: Atlanta v Portland is much more than a battle of football hipsters

Critics and rivals of this year’s finalists often deride them as suspect newcomers. But soccer in both cities has been built over decadesBack before the start of the 2012 season, MLS commissioner Don Garber issued a cautionary note about the “ghost of …

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At last, the promising Gregg Berhalter gives USA a plan and a man to lead it

A far from exhaustive search for the USA’s coach has ended where many believed it would, but that doesn’t make it a failureSo Gregg Berhalter’s appointment as head coach of the USA mens team has finally been confirmed, to the apparent surprise of nobod…

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At last, the promising Gregg Berhalter gives USA a plan and a man to lead it

A far from exhaustive search for the USA’s coach has ended where many believed it would, but that doesn’t make it a failureSo Gregg Berhalter’s appointment as head coach of the USA mens team has finally been confirmed, to the apparent surprise of nobod…

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Italy v USA: international friendly – live!

Can a familiar name solve USA’s familiar problems?Scotland v Israel: Nations League – follow it live!Email Graham with your thoughts or tweet @grahamparkerfc 1.51pm GMT Graham will be here shortly, in the meantime here’s some transfer speculation regar…

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Talking points from USA’s matches against Colombia and Peru: who will replace Dempsey?

Plus: Sarachan has done his job; Berhalter looks like the new coach; Bradley may not be the answer but he’s the best version of the questionThese two friendlies come a year since the disastrous World Cup elimination in Trinidad. It feels far longer. A …

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USA v Mexico: international friendly – live!

Latest score and news as old rivals meet in Nashville Email Graham with your thoughts or tweet him @grahamparkerfc 12.48am BST USAThe biggest takeaway from the Brazil game in New Jersey last week was possibly that it’s a good idea to qualify for the Wo…

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USA v Brazil: international friendly – live!

Clint Dempsey was gritty as hell – but he could conjure inspirationYou can email Graham here or tweet him @grahamparkerfc 11.43pm BST Preamble“Evening all — and welcome to the 2026 World Cup final between Brazil and host nation USA…” 5.37pm BST Graha…

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State of the league: MLS’s growth remains steady rather than spectacular

As MLS pauses for Wednesday’s All-Star Game, the state of America’s top division is very much in the eye of the beholderAmid all of the annual clamor of All-Star week, one of the regular rituals is Don Garber’s state of the union speech, wherein the ML…

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Mexico collapse into familiar World Cup anxiety against Sweden

After a dizzying win over Germany in the opener, some had El Tri going far in the World Cup. But familiar problems have resurfacedBefore you play a fifth game, you have to get to a fourth game. Ideally, then, you don’t want to implode in your third gam…

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A history of Mexican crises: how El Tri rival England for self-inflicted pain

The current inquest into the nocturnal habits of the Mexican team appear positively PG compared to some episodes in the side’s pastMexican football needs controversy. Where none exists it must be invented. The news this month that members of the squad …

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Rocco Commisso offers $500m investment to fund NASL

Letters obtained by the Guardian detail offer to US Soccer president Commisso to lead investment package with $250m of own moneyCosmos owner’s offer is contingent on restructuring of federationRocco Commisso, the owner of the New York Cosmos, who has m…

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How USA could win the World Cup with an Alex Oxlaide-Chamberlain assist

A former technical director for the Premier League may just have the answer to US Soccer’s perpetual youth development bugaboo If the USA were to ever win a World Cup, there would be a long roll of people to thank. But this week another name was quietl…

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Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s theatre of the absurd comes to MLS on thrilling debut

The Swede scored a stunning first goal for LA Galaxy before heading the winner in a 4-3 victory over local rivals LAFC. It’s what we’ve come to expectIt looks like Zlatan Ibrahimovic has arrived in LA then.Just over a decade ago, David Beckham made his…

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LA Galaxy v LAFC: MLS – live!

Zlatan Ibrahimovic brims with confidence at GalaxyTweet Graham at @grahamparkerfc or email him 4.40pm BST Graham will be here shortly. In the meantime why not read Chris Young’s piece on Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s first day with the Galaxy. Related: A star i…

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The MLS-Liga MX partnership could alter soccer’s North American trajectory

Major League Soccer and Liga MX have announced a landmark partnership during a week that saw a narrowing of the gap between the frenemies in the Concacaf Champions LeagueYou know it’s a remarkable day in North American club soccer when the New York Red…

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MLS Cup: Five things we learned from Toronto’s cathartic, legacy-sealing win

Michael Bradley and Jozy Altidore enjoyed sweet vindication as Toronto FC made their most compelling pitch for Major League Soccer’s best team everThe spirit of blame has been bouncing around US soccer circles since the USA’s World Cup elimination – bu…

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What we learned from the USA’s Gold Cup triumph

Tim Howard is still the first-choice keeper, Darlington Nagbe shone in midfield and Jozy Altidore remains the team’s focal point ahead of next year’s World Cup

To the USA got what they needed out of the Gold Cup. If there was ever any doubt that Bruce Arena was playing to lift the trophy, the call-up of some of his biggest players after the group stage demonstrated absolutely that Arena knew what was at stake here.

Arena had entered the US job damned with faint praise as the safest pair of hands to help the US fight its way out of World Cup qualifying trouble, but over the course of what’s now 14 unbeaten games he has carved out something like a mandate for himself as the right man in his own right.

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