December 2015

Plus how the biggest teams wrapped up their 2015
Posted by jschario on 12/31/15
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Gary Neville at Valencia Former Manchester United legend Gary Neville took over at Valencia earlier this month, with his team sitting in fifth place in La Liga. Not even a month into his tenure, he’s already let his presence be known, and made sure to let everyone know he is focusing on the players he has already in the locker room, not on who could come in the January transfer window.  Still, he has some other questions to answer as he takes over in the south of Spain.  First off, how will he transition to instituting his brand of soccer? Of course Neville is English, and as such is... Read More
More teams are vying for the championship this year more than others
Posted by jschario on 12/29/15
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After a break in league action for the Christmas holiday, Spain’s soccer race heats back up to wrap up 2015 with all four top teams in action before the start of the New Year, and January transfer window. This year’s title race is a bit more crowded than the past few years. For a time it was just Barcelona and Real Madrid battling each other at the top, then came Atlético Madrid to earn them a title and still remain a contender. Now though, Galician side Celta Vigo have positioned themselves to within striking distance of the title, only four points off the lead. If they can steal a win from... Read More
Barrett officially signs with another team
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/28/15
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When the Seattle Sounders announced that they were declining several players’ options earlier this month, mouths dropped from fans everywhere, especially when it came to long-time players like Leo Gonzalez, who have been with Rave Green since the start. The first class of free agents in league history has subsequently begun, and one of the players whose options were not picked up was Chad Barrett, who has some exciting news to share with his fans. As a free agent, Barrett signed up to play for the San Jose Earthquakes next season. The forward just signed a deal with the team on Tuesday and... Read More
Stay tuned for more details
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/27/15
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The wait is over! Well, nearly over, at least. The Seattle Sounders announced their preseason details today and there isn’t a whole lot of waiting left. Preseason activities, presented by adidas, begin on January 22, 2016, a Friday less than a month away from now. The season will begin at Starfire Sports at the team’s training facility in Tukwila. Media access windows have not yet been announced but once they are, we will surely hear much more about preseason training. Camps are going to be held in Tucson and Mt. San Antonio College in Southern California, and the Sounders are set to play in... Read More
Sounders SC vs. Kansas City
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/25/15
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Ready to paint your new 2016 calendar in Rave Green? The 2016 opener date was just announced. For the 8th year in a row, the Sounders will be starting its Major Soccer League season at home at the CenturyLink Field. The game will be held on March 6 at 4:00 PM PST. The opponent? Sporting Kansas City. It should be an incredible game to start off the season, and if Sigi Schmid has anything to say, whatever team that visits Seattle is sure to get a good fight with all of the new, young blood springing up in the roster. In 20014, they beat Kansas City 1-0; will 2016 prove that history repeats... Read More
Plus, an American on FC Barcelona
Posted by jschario on 12/24/15
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With the MLS in it’s offseason, many Americans players are surely enjoying a little Christmas vacation. That isn’t the case with their compatriots abroad, with the youngsters in Germany enjoying success against some of the biggest German clubs. However even in their offseason there has been significant movement among top U.S. players with big stars starting new adventures outside the U.S.  National team player Omar Gonzalez recently was sold by the LA Galaxy after an extremely successful seven years in Los Angeles. Gonzalez was sold to Mexican side Pachuca, but per MLS policy details of the... Read More
Leo is back with CS Herediano
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/23/15
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Rave Green fans had to say goodbye to longtime fan favorite Leo Gonzalez when the player, who has been with the Seattle Sounders since the team’s beginning in 2009, had his options declined by the club. Social media and fans everywhere are declaring, “Once a Sounder, always a Sounder” as they wave goodbye to the man who always played with a full heart both on and off the field. Now Gonzalez is returning to his country of birth, Costa Rica, and rejoining the team he originally played for before joining on with the Seattle Sounders: CS Herediano. Gonzalez was the third most active player in the... Read More
Craven and Miller sign on with the Sounders
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/22/15
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Guess who’s back? Andy Craven! Craven just re-signed on with the Sounders for a second year on the First Team. Craven came from the Sounders FC 2 team originally, so it is great to see him continue to advance in his career with another year on the First Team. In fact, he was the first player to join the First Team from the FC 2 company. Craven, a striker on the team, was overjoyed with the news, announcing on his Twitter page, “A big thank you to everyone! I'm so excited to be staying in Seattle and repping he 99 in rave green again #soundertillidie.” He also used a hashtag with the donut... Read More
Barcelona wrap up dream 2015
Posted by jschario on 12/22/15
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International soccer is back in the headlines for the wrong reasons this week. Of course FIFA president Sepp Blatter and UEFA president Michel Platini were handed eight year bans from the sport for their role in the ongoing corruption scandal rocking the soccer world. Corruption scandals haven’t avoided Spain either as former Sevilla FC president José María del Nido was sentenced to twenty-seven months in prison for a transgression outside soccer. Rather for overcharging for unperformed construction services. Still European soccer’s integrity is in jeopardy just ahead of the 2016 edition of... Read More
Former Seattle defender DeAndre Yedlin also in the running
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/19/15
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Did you think it would be Obafemi Martins after so many honors he has received this year? Nope. The honor of a Seattle Sounders nomination for Male Player of the Year in 2015 U. S. Soccer is none other than Clint Dempsey! Only five players in the nation are nominated for the coveted award, making is a huge honor. Dempsey is definitely deserving of the nomination. The forward played a great season, starting in 20 games, scoring a team-high of nine goals and making another 10 assists. With a hat trick in his win over Cuba (his first one in his career) and a total of 48 goals in his MLS history... Read More
Get your little one started on Rave Green
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/18/15
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Looking for something fun for your kids, nieces or nephews to do over their winter vacation? Choose something constructive over simple childcare for the best experience and bang for your buck—like a session of Winter Camp with the Seattle Sounders! The Sounders have a long history of helping out with the community, and one of the cool ways that they help empower the youth of Seattle is through their annual Winter Break Camp. The camp is also co-sponsored by several corporations, including McDonalds, Zaw Artisan Bake-at-Home Pizza, EA Sports and Xbox One. Camps run from December 28 through 30... Read More
The tables have turned for both
Posted by jschario on 12/17/15
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For years Madrid’s top two soccer teams, Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid, have found themselves in different positions on the success ladder, and this season is no different. Though this year there’s a difference in which of the two is reaping the rewards. Normally the narrative is that the team that plays its games in Chamartin (Real Madrid) cruises through league play and battles Barcelona for the top spot, sweeping aside their little brother Atlético in the Madrid derby every year.  However since former Atlético player Diego Simeone took over as manager at the Vicente Calderon, the boys on... Read More
He wins either way!
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/16/15
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It’s come down to two goals now for the Seattle Sounders 2015 Goal of the Year. The final two goals were scored by Obafemi Martins… and Obafemi Martins! Not much of a drum roll there when either way, Martins wins. But let’s take a look at both goals. Then you can post below to say which goal you think should win. The first goal scored was versus Houston Dynamo. The pirouette that Martins completed before scoring was pretty amazing to behold. Let’s face it: a lot of us would fall on our faces attempting a similar move! Fans lost their minds watching that incredible move, ending in three goals... Read More
Which one of the three is likely to win?
Posted by jschario on 12/15/15
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One thing is for sure about this year’s Ballon D’Or winner whomever it is, and that is that he plays his club ball in Spain. Other than that, no one can say that any of the three candidates; Messi, Neymar or Ronaldo is head and shoulders above the rest. A case can be made for each player, Ronaldo has scored more goals this year than the other two, Messi and Neymar both have won three trophies with Barcelona this year to Ronaldo’s zero, Messi advanced to the Copa America title game and Neymar has carried Barcelona for the start of this season while Messi was injured.  Diving deeper however, we... Read More
The Real Madrid star does not rule out a future move to Barcelona
Posted by jschario on 12/12/15
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Cristiano Ronaldo has never been one to discard any possibilities, maintaining throughout his time at Real Madrid that he could leave the club. Normally pundits suggest that CR7 is most likely destined for his former club Manchester United or a David Beckam style move to the MLS to spend the twilight of his career. This season however a couple new contenders for Ronaldo’s signature have appeared. Paris Saint-Germain have emerged as a possible destination, and now Madrid’s bitter rival Barcelona has been mentioned as a possibility. In an interview with the Associated Press Thursday, the... Read More
Sounders giving in the community
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/12/15
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The Seattle Sounders are known for their generosity and caring for the local community in many different ways. One of these ways is for the Boys & Girls Club. The Boys & Girls Clubs of King County and Bellevue has been working with the local community for over 65 years now, providing services to over 30,000 youths ages two to 18. The goal is to help these children “o realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens.” Not only do the Seattle Sounders help provide mentoring services for the many children in the program, but they also help give them match day... Read More
Pappa pulled from re-entry draft at last minute
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/11/15
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Yet another Seattle Sounders player will not be back to play next season. Guatemalan player Marco Pappa is being traded to play for the Colorado Rapids. His name was pulled from the MLS Re-Entry Draft without any comments from Pappa or the Sounders management. The pull occurred only minutes before the draft, raising more than a few eyebrows. As it often does, however, money came to be a factor. Sounders GM and President of Soccer Garth Lagerwey did say that he had hoped that the team could work something out to keep Pappa on the team, but it sounds like they either were not willing to... Read More
The midfielder has been picked up by Colorado
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/10/15
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As fans now know, Micheal Azira was surprisingly sent to the MLS Elysian Fields—otherwise known as the waiver zone. Being waived is not a player death sentence, but a lot of players have a tough time being picked up during the MLS Waiver Draft. Luckily Azira isn’t one of those players. It’s hard to go to the Sounders roster page these days because it’s so empty and missing so many great players, but Rave Green’s got to do what they think is best for a strong season, right? It’s also hard to see players go with the budget listed as a reason why they are cut, which was the case with Lamar... Read More
Yanks holding their own
Posted by jschario on 12/09/15
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Major League Soccer has maybe not always been viewed as one of the stronger leagues around the world, but that does not mean that the world views our homegrown players as lesser quality. Many of our players have gone abroad to play for some of the biggest clubs in Europe, a la Clint Dempsey or Michael Bradley. Despite many like Dempsey and Bradley returning to the MLS in recent seasons many top players remain abroad and are highly coveted by their clubs. Still, US Men’s National Team coach Jurgen Klinsmann has preached that players get better by playing in Europe rather than MLS, and has... Read More
Plus Torres recovers from injury
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/08/15
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We all issued a fond farewell to Lamar Neagle when the news was announced that he would be leaving the Seattle Sounders to play for D. C. United. While he will definitely still be missed by fans as well as family and friends, there is still a bright side to Neagle’s move to Washington. That bright side is Neagle himself. For starters, the player is only 28 years old. He still has a long life of being a professional athlete ahead of him in Washington. He is also a really healthy man, which is crucial in this career. D. C. is considering him a replacement player for their own injured Chris... Read More
Good luck with D. C. United
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/07/15
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It has happened. The Seattle Sounders announced today that they are trading Lamar Neagle, this past summer’s “Prince of the Pitch,” and contender for Goal of the Year, to D. C. United. The trade is not happening between players, but funds. In exchange for Neagle, the Seattle Sounders will receive both general allocation money and targeted allocation money. Neagle has been with the team for three seasons, playing a total of 93 games for the club. Neagle offered a heartfelt goodbye letter to the team, fans and Seattle on his website on Monday. He told a story about how, as a child, he had the... Read More
Real Madrid is quickly unraveling at the top
Posted by jschario on 12/06/15
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It has been a week long nightmare for Real Madrid.  After seeming to have recovered from their devastating loss to Barcelona over two weeks ago, with consecutive wins in the Champions League and La Liga, the week started out business as usual. Los Merengues opened play for their domestic cup, the Copa del Rey, against third division club Cádiz on Wednesday. As expected, Madrid won handily 3-1, with Isco slotting home two goals. However, it would prove to be a controversial win as the man who scored their opening goal, Denis Cheryshev, was actually ineligible. Last season while on loan at... Read More
More news about next season
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/05/15
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Sigi Schmid is calling this the most eventful offseason in the history of Major League Soccer. If the actions of the Seattle Sounders are to be counted, so far he is making good on the prediction. Schmid also said that it will likely be a very challenging year for the Sounders overall. They will be playing with many new players and the entire league seems to be leaning on newer, fresher options all around. He said, “What you’re going to see with a lot of teams is it’s going to be a group of players supported by a lot of young players underneath.” And while he spoke of the change for the... Read More
Get something for everyone on your list
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/04/15
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Whether you come from a big family of Sounders fans or you just want to get all of your friends on board the Seattle train, you can get something for everyone on your holiday shopping list at the Seattle Sounders store. At the official store you can find gifts for men, gifts for women and even gifts for children at a wide variety of prices. The obvious choice for the special person on your list is a Seattle Sounders adidas Rave Green Replica Jersey. You can get one with any player’s name that you want for $71.99 while they are on sale (regular price $84.99). For a bit more you can nab an... Read More
A fond farewell to two fan favorites
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/03/15
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Since the Seattle Sounders have been in existence, Leo Gonzalez and Zach Scott have called the team home. There’s never been a season without either of the 35-year-old defenders present on the field and representing the Sounders, but the team just announced that they are declining their options for the next season. Fans will certainly be missing two of their most beloved players in the upcoming year. In addition to Leo and Scott, midfielder Marco Pappa, goalie Troy Perkins, international player Gonzalo Pineda, and midfielder Tomas were declined. Other players who will be up for grabs during... Read More
Find out more about #29
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/02/15
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Today’s player of the day is the Seattle Sounders defender Roman Torres. His first name is pronounced “roe MAHN” and he wears the #29 jersey. Torres was born on March 20, 1986 in Panama City, Panama, which is also his hometown. He stands at 6’2 and weighs 195 pounds. The Sounders picked Torres up this year, on August 12, 2015 as a Discovery Signing using Targeted Allocation Money. So far, Torres has played four games with the Sounders. He has started in each of these games, accumulating a total of 315 minutes on the field. He has taken two shots, scoring no goals but making one assist. Torres... Read More
#21 hails from Yardley, Pennsylvania
Posted by SeattleSoccerInsider on 12/01/15
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He wears the #21 uniform for the Seattle Sounders soccer club. Jimmy Ockford was born on June 10, 1992 in Yardley, Pennsylvania, a town that he still considers his hometown. He is 6’1 and weighs 185 pounds. He is a defender for the Sounders. Prior to becoming a Sounder, Ockford played with several other clubs. While playing in high school at Pennsbury HS, we won a letter each year and served as captain during his senior year. His youth career began in 2010 when he played for the Mount Saint Mary’s Mountaineers, his alma mater. He played for the Mountaineers from 2010 to 2012, a total of... Read More