Category: International Soccer in Texas

Weekly Soccer Notes-Saturday, May 27

Other news of interest in Texas Soccer this week:

National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL):

  • The Houston Dash lost to Sky Blue FC in New Jersey last Saturday afternoon, falling 2-1 on a goal just minutes from the end of the game. Midfielder Andressinha scored the Dash goal, converting a rebound after her initial shot hit the post in the 40th minute.  The Dash are now 2-4-0 and sit in 9th place (in a 10 team league), 6 points behind league leaders North Carolina.  The Dash return home to face Seattle today at BBVA Compass Stadium at 3 pm.  (
  • Four Dash midfielders have been called up to their national teams for games early next month.  Morgan Brian and Carli Lloyd, who currently is playing on loan in England, for the United States, Denise O’Sullivan for Ireland and Andressinha for Brazil.  (

National Premier Soccer League (NPSL):

An article by Nipun Chopra ( on the upper-Midwestern based Soc Takes website discussed the potential of a new Oklahoma City/Norman NPSL team to begin play next year.  In the article he spoke with the potential team’s lead owner, Dustin Hooker, who was previously involved in the set up of OKC Energy’s Premier Development League (PDL) side.  Hooker stated that the ownership group were in the process of filing a franchise application with NPSL.  They currently have a trial team that is playing against other amateur sides in the Midwest and Texas. In the article he alluded to the potential of other new NPSL teams in Texas in the future. Here is a link to the article that provides additional details on stadium locations and the team name:

Premier Development League (PDL):

Part of the mission for the PDL is to bring top players in their league to the attention of USL, MLS and other professional soccer leagues.  As a reflection of this mission, one of their brands is “Path-to-Pro”.  The league has enlisted the help of 24 scouts across North America, including coaching directors, technical directors and head coaches, to provide the PDL with valuable insight on the top Under-23 performers in the league throughout the season. This feedback forms the basis of a Top Prospects List, which serves as a resource for professional clubs who are interested in identifying and scouting high-level players, ranks players based on their performance within the PDL, their technical and tactical qualities and their potential to play at the professional level.  The league published the first Top Prospects List this week (link below of the Top 50 prospects).  No players on our Texas based PDL teams were identified on this first list…not surprising given that the all of these teams are new and the season has just started. (

National Soccer Hall of Fame (HOF):

  • FC Dallas and U.S. Soccer released new renderings and an updated schedule for the Hall of Fame, currently under construction at Toyota Stadium in Frisco.  The new timeline projects that the museum will be completed in the Winter of 2018. Other new seating and amenities in the south end of the stadium, which has been closed since construction began last year, will be completed and open next summer.  New renderings of the HOF can be found at this link: (

  • The U.S. Soccer Federation and FC Dallas have hired Djorn Buchholz to serve as the executive director for the National Soccer Hall of Fame at Toyota Stadium. Buchholz has 15 years of experience in MLS, USL (Austin Aztex) and NASL team front offices. He comes to Frisco from Austin, TX where he ran his own soccer consulting firm that provided insight and operational leadership to teams, matches and large-scale tournaments. (
  • Former Houston Dynamo players Brian Ching and Pat Onstad are among 33 players nominated for the National Soccer Hall of Fame Class of 2017.  Ching retired following the 2013 season and is in his first year of eligibility. He is the Dynamo’s all-time leading scorer with 56 goals in the MLS regular season and 69 goals across all competitions. He led the Dynamo do MLS Cup titles in 2006 and 2007.  Onstad holds Dynamo records for shutouts, wins, saves and goals against average. (

Youth Soccer Development:

A 64-player roster has been called to Carson, Calif. for U.S. Soccer’s first Boys’ National Team Futures Camp of 2017. The training camp, which consists of players who were born in 2002 and 2003, runs from May 26-30 at the U.S. Soccer National Training Center.  This is a very intriguing camp, designed to identify the most talented players in the ’02 and ’03 birth years who appear to be on a later physical development path and/or are born in the second half of the year. Such parameters serve to reduce the impact of physical maturity and relative age effect on identification and evaluation of talent, according to the US Soccer website.  Four North-Texas youth players, two each from the 2002 and 2003 classes and also from the Solar Chelsea and FC Dallas Academy clubs were selected to participate.  (

International Soccer in Texas:

The MoneyGram SocioMX Tour will come to both Houston and Dallas this summer. LigaMX sides Cruz Azul and CF Monterrey will play in Houston at BBVA Compass Stadium on Sunday, July 2 at 7 p.m.  CF Monterrey will then play Pumas UNAM and Cruz Azul will play Toluca in Dallas at the Cotton Bowl on Saturday, July 8 at 6 p.m. (Match organizer press releases)

Weekly Soccer Notes-Saturday, May 20, 2017

Other news of interest in Texas Soccer this week:

Major League Soccer (MLS):

FC Dallas young star, Paxton Pomykal, suffered a knee injury during training on Wednesday and will miss four to six weeks while recovering from surgery. (

United Soccer League (USL):

Rio Grande Valley FC’s midfielder Todd Wharton was named to the USL Team of the Week as a result of the game winning goal he scored against Swope Park last Saturday

U.S. Open Cup

San Antonio FC eliminated Dutch Lions FC (HDL) from the U.S. Open Cup Wednesday night with a 2-1 second-round victory in Conroe.  Goals by Victor Araujo and Aly Alberto Hassan led a reserve-heavy side to the win.  Araujo’s direct-kick goal was his first since returning from a season ending injury he suffered last June.  After the match, SAFC head coach Darren Powell discussed the lineup choices on the SAFC website.

“We’re very pleased with our guys,” SAFC Head Coach Darren Powell said. “We have a lot of guys who haven’t been playing in the first team in regular season games, so it was a good opportunity for them to play tonight in a competitive environment and show what they’re capable of doing.”

The Dutch Lions made a game out it in the 62nd minute after Nathaniel Coons converted a ricochet shot off a clearance to pull HDL within a goal.

SAFC now advance to the third-round to play in Oklahoma against fellow USL side, Tulsa Roughnecks, on May 31.  If SAFC wins this match, they would play FC Dallas in a fourth-round match in San Antonio on either June 13 or 14. (

National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL):

The Houston Dash lost their second consecutive match last Saturday, when they fell 3-1 to Sky Blue FC at Houston’s BBVA Compass Stadium.  Poliana scored the only goal on an assist from Kealia Ohai for the Dash.

The Dash play a rematch against Sky Blue FC this afternoon at their home in New Jersey on the campus of Rutgers University; Yurcak Field. (

United States Youth National Teams:

A 40 player roster was named for the U.S. U-17 girls national team camp to be held May 14-21 in Florida.  Two of these players are from North Texas: Hollyn Torres and Diana Ordonez, both from the FC Dallas program. (

International Soccer in Texas:

  • A Tecate Summer Tour match between Liga MX clubs Chivas de Guadalajara and Club Atlas will be played at Toyota Field in San Antonio on Wednesday, July 5 at 7:30 p.m. This match will be Chivas’s first game in San Antonio in over 18 years. (
  • Also at Toyota Field, SAFC will play a friendly against LigaMX side, Santos Laguna, on Saturday night July 8.  This game will be Santos’s third trip to San Antonio since 2013, having played against Club America in the Alamodome last summer and at Toyota Field 4 years ago. (

Texas Soccer Notes-Saturday April 8, 2017

Additional soccer news of interest this week:

Major League Soccer (MLS):

Houston Dynamo forward Erick “Cubo’ Torres was named the Alcatel MLS Player of the Week for his hat-trick performance against New York last weekend.  He was also selected for the Team of the Week, as was Dynamo forward Mauro Manotas, who was on the bench.  This is the 16th time that a Dynamo player has received this recognition.  Current Houston Dash President, Brian Ching, has been honored four times.  Finally, Dynamo goalkeeper Tyler Deric was nominated for Save of the Week. (

United Soccer League (USL):

  • San Antonio FC (SAFC) midfielder Billy Forbes was named to the USL Team of the Week for his dominating performance in SAFC’s 3-0 win over LA Galaxy II last Saturday. Forbes scored his second goal of the season and recorded his first assist in the match.  SAFC also moved up to 4th place in the Weekly USL Power Rankings. Finally, to wrap-up news from last week’s game, Galaxy II midfielder Jaime Villarreal, who was quietly escorted off the field by his coaching staff after receiving a touch-line red card with only a few minutes to go,  was issued a three-game suspension for use of offensive and abusive language. (
  • The USL continues to leverage its new $10 million Florida broadcast facility to enhance their national media profile.  In addition to live streaming of all of its matches on team websites and select games on ESPN3, the league announced an expansion of its ESPN relationship to include live matches on ESPNU. One of the live TV games will be SAFC’s July 14 game at Toyota Field against OKC Energy. USL also announced an expanded national radio deal with the soccer-dedicated SiriusXM FC channel.  The satellite radio provider will now air a live USL Game of the Week and a weekly show dedicated to USL news and interviews. (

United States Women’s National Team:

  • The United States women beat Russia 4-0 before a sold-out crowd at Toyota Field in Frisco Thursday night.  Houston Dash (NWSL) midfielder Carli Lloyd started and assisted on the first goal. Dash goalkeeper Jane Campbell and forward Kealia Ohai were also part of the roster selected to train for the Russia games.  Dash forward Morgan Brian was part of the initial roster, but was forced to withdraw last month. The same teams will play again tomorrow at Houston’s BBVA Compass Stadium at 1 p.m. (
  • It means little, but it is interesting to note that an Dallas FC under-15 boys squad beat the U.S. Women’s National Team 5-2 in a scrimmage last Sunday. (multiple sources)

National Premier Soccer League (NPSL):

  • Tyler FC attempted to play an exhibition game against Shreveport last weekend as part of a double-bill with the Copa Hermandad Clasico (Brotherhood Cup Classic), which pitted a team of retired international players from Mexico against a team of similar players from Honduras.  Unfortunately, heavy rain forced the NPSL exhibition to be cancelled, though the rain cleared up to allow the Brotherhood Cup match to be played later that afternoon (Mexico won 3-2).  Tyler FC will open their NPSL schedule on May 13 at the Fort Worth Vaqueros. (
  • Nick Stavrou, a former Dallas Sidekicks (indoor soccer) star, was announced as the head coach for the Ft. Worth Vaqueros.  Stavrou was selected after a search that included former Major League Soccer players, international candidates, coaches from throughout the United States and more than expected local candidates.Former Vaqueros coach Mark Snell guided the NPSL club for the first three seasons. Lopez said the plan when the club launched in 2014 was always for Snell to transition into the role of Director of the Vaqueros youth academy. The Vaqueros are on the verge of establishing a 501(c)3 non-profit youth club, which is expected to launch this summer.  The Vaqueros open their preseason today at Dallas Baptist University.

  • On March 21, Houston Dutch Lions FC (HDLFC) team announced the coaching staff for the NPSL 2017 season. Marco Pruis, starting his 4th season as head coach, will be assisted by Michiel van de Heijning who is returning for his third consecutive season.  Goalkeeper Coach Leroy Zuiddam completes the coaching staff.  HDLFC began its preseason on March 26th with a 2-1 loss to Houston Baptist University.

United States Youth National Teams:

  • Ahead of the FIFA U-20 World Cup in South Korea set to begin on May 20, the U.S. U-20 Men are currently participating in a training and evaluation camp in London, England until April 10.  The only players from Texas invited to this camp are two defenders, FC Dallas’s Brandon Terwege and Plano-native Keaton Parks, who currently is not affiliated with a club. (
  • The 2016-17 Generation Adidas Cup, hosted by FC Dallas in Frisco, began its competition yesterday.  This U17 Boys tournament, consisting of 34 total games over 9 days, will be played by 19 MLS Academy and 13 international teams.  In yesterday’s action, the Houston Dynamo defeated DC United 3-0 and FC Dallas lost 1-0 to Sangolqui (a suburb of the capital Quito), Ecuador. side Independiente del Valle.  U.S. and Canadian MLS teams lost all nine matches played against international opponents yesterday.(
  • The Dr Pepper Dallas Cup also begins tomorrow at fields throughout the Metroplex (April 9-16).   Multiple Texas clubs will be participating in this tournament.  The marquee competition in this event will be the Mens U19 Gordon Jago Super Group. The FC Dallas Academy U-18  team will open group play in the three-team Bracket B at the Cotton Bowl against Everton FC from Liverpool, England tomorrow.  FCD will finish group play on Tuesday when they play CF Monterrey from Mexico.  The semifinals and finals will be played this Friday and a week from tomorrow respectively. (
International Soccer in Texas:
The International Champions Cup derby match between Manchester United and Manchester City, previously reported to have been scheduled for Austin, will now be played at Houston’s NRG Stadium on July 20.  Manchester United previously played in the MLS All-Star Game at the same venue in 2010.  Manchester City had also been scheduled to play last in Houston last year against the Dynamo in the Houston Dynamo Charities Cup. Unfortunately that game had to be cancelled on game-day because a deluge in the Houston area made the field unplayable. (multiple sources)

High Schools:

An article in USA Today this week pointed out an absurd situation for regional Texas UIL public high school playoff games that are being played this weekend.  There are only 4 regions dividing the State for purposes of the UIL playoffs, even though Texas’s size means that the schools can be pretty far away.  It so happened, despite the fact that all four Region 1 semifinal participants come from the DFW Metroplex (within 35 minutes of each other), that they all were scheduled to travel 5+ hours to play the regional semifinal and finals in Midland.  In a late announcement, logic actually triumphed and the tournament was moved from Midland to Southlake, a DFW suburb. (

Texas Soccer Notes-Saturday, March 25, 2017

Other Texas Soccer news of interest this week:

Major League Soccer (MLS):

  • FC Dallas (FCD) Maxi Urruti was named the Alcatal MLS Player of the Week off his two goal second half explosion in the 2-1 victory over New England Revolution last Saturday.  As was noted in the announcement, FCD is 9-0-2 when Urruti scores a goal.  This is the second Player of the Week award in the first three weeks of the season for the Texas MLS teams.  Dynamo Erick Torres was the opening week awardee.
  • On a less positive note, MLS also announced that the Disciplinary Committee has fined and suspended FC Dallas left-back Maynor Figueroa for one game for serious foul play last Saturday.  Figueroa was given a yellow card for a tackle on Revolution forward Kei Kamara in the 54th minute in the incident that has resulted in the retroactive suspension.  Figueroa will miss FCD’s next MLS match on April 8 against Minnesota United. (
  • Maxi Urruti was nominated for MLS Goal of the Week (won by Atlanta United’s Josef Martinez) for his second goal last weekend.  Houston goalkeeper Tyler Deric was nominated for MLS Save of the Week (won by Vancouver’s Spencer Richey in his MLS Debut) for his 79th minute stop of Fanendo Adi in Portland on Saturday. (
  • Urruti has also been extremely efficient in creating goals from the chances provided. In an article on, Benjamin Baer using data from Opta, points out that Maxi is Expected goals (xG) is a sophisticated statistical measure that takes into account a wide variety of variables, using a large historical data base, to calculate chance quality and how likely a goal is to be scored.  So far this season, Urruti has made the most of any player in the league with his chances.  According to the metric, the eight shots he has taken have an xG of .58 meaning that he would not have been expected to score even one goal so far, given the shots he has taken.  Instead he has three and significantly overachieving. (
  • Recently signed Dynamo defender George Malki, who played in 25 matches for then Rio Grande Valley FC coach Wilmer Cabrera in 2016, sadly suffered a season ending left knee ACL injury.  The injury was incurred during a practice on March 15. (
  • On a positive note, FCD’s midfielder Victor Ulloa and defender Ryan Hollingshead are back in training and played in the friendly match against San Antonio FC last Sunday. Neither player has played this year yet.  Ulloa suffered a Sports Hernia and Hollingshead was hurt in a freak auto accident while assisting another motorist as a Good Samaritan.  (

United States National Teams:

  • Late last night in San Jose, CA., Nacogdoches-native Clint Dempsey scored three goals in a comprehensive 6-0 victory over Honduras in a 2018 World Cup Qualifier. This game was virtually a must win for the United States Men’s National Team as they had lost their first (of only ten) qualifiers in this round.  It is probably not a coincidence that Dempsey, who has served as Captain for the National Team, missed both of those losses due to a scary heart condition that forced him to shut down his season last summer.  This was the teams biggest ever margin of victory against Honduras and also in a Final Round Qualifier. (
  • After eighteen years of operation, US Soccer announced late last week that they are closing the Men’s U-17 National Team Residency Program at the end of the current semester.  3 of the 32 players currently in Bradenton, FL for the Spring semester residency are from Texas:  Midfielder Blaine Ferri (Solar Chelsea SC; Southlake, Texas), Midfielder Marcelo Palomino (Houston Dynamo; Houston, Texas)  and Forward Bryan Reynolds Jr. (FC Dallas; Little Elm, Texas)  (
  • The United States Women’s National Team will be playing two Friendlies against Russia on April 6th at 7:30 p.m. at Toyota Stadium in Frisco and April 9 at 1:00 p.m. at BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston.
  • Over the last few weeks, the U.S. U-16 Girls National Team and U-19 and U-23 Women’s National Teams have called in a total of 86 players for training camps ahead of upcoming tournaments and FIFA competitions.  A grand total of 1 of these is from Texas (midfielder Taryn Torres from the FC Dallas Academy).  How is this possible?  I would love to have somebody in our North and South Texas Youth Soccer Associations take a shot at explaining this. ( and

United Soccer League (USL):

San Antonio FC announced a TV deal with Fox Sports Southwest for the 2017 season. Six games will be shown: Four Home and Two Away (at Colorado Springs and Sacramento). Houston Dynamo broadcaster Glenn Davis, former U.S. International player and long-term broadcaster Christopher Sullivan and local announcer Dan Weiss will call the matches. These TV games will also be live-streamed on Fox Sports GO.  The remaining SAFC games, except any possible future nationally televised games, will be streamed on the SAFC website. (San Antonio Business Journal)

International Soccer in Texas:

  • El Salvador will play a top Honduras club team, CD Olimpia, at BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston this Sunday at 4 p.m. (
  • Mexico will play Ghana, in a warm-up game for this summer’s CONCACAF Gold Cup, at Houston’s NRG Stadium at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 28th.  This will be the 16th time that Mexico has played in this stadium.(
  • An effort to bring a derby match between English Premier sides Manchester United and Manchester City to Austin in July fell through due to scheduling conflicts.  The game was to be part of the International Champions Cup, a tournament which is played each summer in the U.S. by major European club soccer teams as part of their preseason preparation.  This story was reported on March 22 by Kevin Lyttle in the Austin America-Statesman.