Last week, FIFA inspectors completed their visit to Qatar, the final stop on a globe-spanning tour of the nine bidders vying to host either the 2018 or 2022 World Cup.
The Middle East nation's chances took a hit when Harold Mayne-Nicholls, head of the inspection team, said the bid presented "a number of logistical challenges," but a surprise appearance by Zinedine Zidane impressed FIFA. The French legend passionately argued that it was time for a nation in the region to host the World Cup.
WASHINGTON — Ben Olsen has been D.C. United’s interim head coach for less than two months, but he’s already learned a few tricks of the trade—like avoiding the media in the days after a tough loss.
Citing the suspension he incurred in Saturday night’s 3-1 loss to Houston, Olsen took a rain check, so to speak, on answering questions after a rare Monday training session this week.
Despite a hairy 1-1 draw at home against Colorado, Real Salt Lake is atop the Power Rankings again this week, with streaking FC Dallas following close behind. The Red Bulls, meanwhile, jump over LA with a win on the left coast, and San Jose make their move up to No. 6.
Vote for Andy!
The horror! The horror! The season is over for the LA Galaxy after a 2-0 loss to New York on Friday night at the Home Depot Center. All is lost! Oh, the humanity!
Well … no. Not actually. The Thermometer is back for another week, and a quick check of the temperature in Los Angeles indicates there is still life after Red Bulls.
Oh yeah, and the rest of the league took the field on Saturday in what was actually a much more dramatic match day. Which teams have playoff fever, and which teams have caught a chill?
We’ll Take That Back, Thank You
When the United States take on Poland on Oct. 9 and Colombia on Oct. 12, it will mark the genuine beginning of Bob Bradley's second tenure as the US national team's head coach.
The European leagues will be on a break, meaning he can call on his regulars across the Pond – although expect elder statesmen Carlos Bocanegra, Clint Dempsey and Steve Cherundolo to stay with their clubs. Also, even though it's not quite time for Conor Doyle or Mikkel Diskerud to make their senior debut, some new faces will join the proceedings.
Another game has gone by at Rio Tinto and Real Salt Lake are still unbeaten at home. But this game was special – by extending the streak in Sandy, Utah, RSL have officially clinched a playoff berth.
Real Salt Lake have 48 points, a total that only ninth-place Kansas City Wizards can match. RSL have the head-to-head tiebreaker clinched over the Wizards, though, with a 1-0-1 record. The reigning champs will now officially begin their title defense, joining the LA Galaxy in the playoffs.
Welcome to the first installment of the Monday Postmortem, a new feature here on MLSsoccer.com in which we break down the most recent week of action as the push for the playoffs heats up.
As potential weeks to launch a column go, this one could hardly have been better: There was a hat trick in Toronto (though not by a Red), one of the most hotly anticipated games in league history in LA, a pair of record unbeaten streaks extended, and, of course, the unruly playoff picture.
Also: For the second straight week, no scoreless draws!
Let’s get to it: