DC United scores late vs. Crew to clinch playoff berth

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DC United scores late vs. Crew to clinch playoff berth

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Lewis Neal scored in stoppage time and D.C. United beat the Columbus Crew 3-2 on Saturday night to clinch its first playoff berth in five seasons.

Marcelo Saragosa and Nick DeLeon also scored for United (17-10-6). The Washington club ran its unbeaten streak to six games and helped eliminate the Crew (14-12-7) from playoff contention.

The win also pushed United's club home unbeaten streak to 16 (12-0-4). United won the last of its four MLS titles in 2004.

Eddie Gaven and Jairo Arrieta each scored their ninth goals of the season for Columbus.

But the Crew failed to preserve two leads, and saw their playoff hopes end when the Houston Dynamo sealed a 3-1 victory over the Philadelphia Union about 15 minutes later.

United would've clinched one of five Eastern Conference playoff spots with a draw, but can now finish no worse than fourth and is guaranteed at least one home playoff game.

They moved ahead of the Chicago Fire and into second place in the Eastern Conference, and could win the conference with a win at Chicago and a Sporting Kansas City loss in the season finales next weekend.

Neal sealed the win a minute into stoppage time when he finished off a swift counterattack that began when Chris Korb's long ball found Branko Boskovic on the left. Boskovic quickly played to Neal, who finished past a stranded Andy Gruenebaum. Neal and Boskovic were late substitutes for United.

Nike releases images of new U.S. Soccer jerseys, receives criticism of familiar design

Nike releases images of new U.S. Soccer jerseys, receives criticism of familiar design

The U.S. National Teams will rock a new look coming up soon. Instead of a blue and white color pallet on their existing jerseys, the new kit Nike unveiled today will be two shades of red. 

The U.S. men will first wear the red kits for their March 24th World Cup qualifying match against Honduras. The U.S. women will don them sooner, for the 2017 SheBelieves Cup from March 1 to 7. 

Similar to the previous designs, the new shirts will have color block sleeves with the words "1 Nation" and "1 Team" appearing on the inside hem. Men's team jerseys are crewneck, while womens are v-neck. 

Like all new uniforms, these have drawn some criticism, specifically for their resemblance to Portugal's 2016 home kit and England's 2016 away kit. 

What do you think; too similar or still too similar? Because it's hard to find the differences...

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It's official: U.S. Soccer hires Bruce Arena to replace Jurgen Klinsmann

It's official: U.S. Soccer hires Bruce Arena to replace Jurgen Klinsmann

NEW YORK – Bruce Arena is returning to coach the U.S. national soccer team, a decade after he was fired.

The winningest coach in American national team history, Arena took over Tuesday, one day after Jurgen Klinsmann was fired. The 65-year-old Arena starts work Dec. 1.

With the U.S. 0-2 in the final round of World Cup qualifying, the U.S. Soccer Federation wants to spark a turnaround when the playoffs resume March 24 with a home game against Honduras.

"His experience at the international level, understanding of the requirements needed to lead a team through World Cup qualifying, and proven ability to build a successful team were all aspects we felt were vital for the next coach," USSF President Sunil Gulati, who fired Arena in 2006, said in a statement. "I know Bruce will be fully committed to preparing the players for the next eight qualifying games and earning a berth to an eighth straight FIFA World Cup."

Arena first took over as national team coach after the 1998 World Cup and led the U.S. to a 71-30-29 record.

"I'm looking forward to working with a strong group of players that understand the challenge in front of them after the first two games," Arena said in a statement. "Working as a team, I'm confident that we'll take the right steps forward to qualify"

A wisecracking Brooklynite known for blunt talk and sarcasm, he coached the University of Virginia from 1978-95, then led D.C. United to titles in Major League Soccer's first two seasons before losing in the 1998 final. He guided the Americans to the team's best World Cup finish since 1930, a 1-0 loss to Germany in the 2002 quarterfinals.

He was let go after the team's first-round elimination by Ghana in 2006. Arena coached the New York Red Bulls of MLS from July 2006 to November 2007, then was hired the following August by the Galaxy. He led the team to MLS titles in 2011, 2012 and 2014.

Arena was inducted into the U.S. National Soccer Hall of Fame in 2010.

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