Did CONCACAF betray the USA 2022 bid? | Soccer By Ives

The man in black is Jack Warner, the CONCACAF President and FIFA Executive Committee member who just finished voting on the selection of World Cup 2018 and 2022. A long-time target of corruption allegations, Warner is under fresh claims of shady behavior amid new reports suggesting that he did not vote for the United States in its bid to host the 2022 World Cup.

A pair of reports out of England both made the suggestion based on the fact that Warner did not lobby English FIFA Executive Committee member Geoff Thompson for him to vote for the USAs 2018 bid. The American bid managed just three votes in the first round of FIFA voting for the 2022 World Cup, whichraises the question of whether the three CONCACAF-based voters (Warner, American Chuck Blazer and Guatemalan Rafael Salguero) actually voted for the American bid.

The allegation comes as fresh claims of bribes and corrupt dealings involving the recent World Cup voting are also surfacing. The Times of London is reporting that a whistle blower has stepped forward claiming FIFA voters sold votes for as much as $1.5 million each. Also, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday that a former member of Qatars bid team revealed that a payment of almost $80 million was suggested to be made to Argentina to help secure the vote of Argentine FIFA voter Julio Grondona.

The accusations against Warner are not surprising, but If the mere fact that Warner didnt ask Thompson to promise his vote for USA in 2022 is the basis for the allegations against Warner it does seem a bit flimsy. That said, it doesnt help Warner that hes widely-regarded as one of, if not the most corrupt man in world soccer.

Warner has been the subject of multiple reports out of England detailing his many questionable dealings, and he has been identified as one of the voters who didnt vote for England despite giving the England bidders his promise that he would not only vote for England, but also secure the votes of Blazer and Salguero for England. With England managing just two votes in the first round of 2018 voting, and with Thompson being one of those voters, Warner will have a hard time convincing anybody he was the lone other voter for England.

As far as the idea that CONCACAF turned its back on the USA bid, it is entirely possible that one or more of the three CONCACAF voters went with another 2022 bid. For his part, Blazer (pictured above with MLS commissioner Don Garber) has already come forward to state emphatically that hevoted for the United States in every round.

What do you think? Think Warner is guilty of turning his back on his own federation? Praying someone finds a paper trail that helps bring down FIFAs corrupt bosses?

Share your thoughts below.

Advertisements

U.S. Under-17s lose to Turkey | Soccer By Ives

BY ODEEN DOMINGO

PHOENIX In the end, the U.S. U-17 boys national team just missed too much.

Composure, an injured Alejandro Guido (back), and opportunities.

The United States lost to Turkey, 2-0, in the Nike International Friendlies tournament final Sunday night at Reach 11 Sports Complex despite having a man advantage for the last 32 minutes of the match.

We were too anxious, U.S. coach Wilmer Cabrera said.

The U.S. team finished third in the tournament with 4 points after going 1-1-1 on the weekend. The Americans finished ahead of Korea Republic (0 points) and behind Brazil (5 points) and tournament champion Turkey (7 points).

Turkey led 1-0 after the 17th minute but helped the U.S. in the second half after Turkish center back Tana Can Velioglu received a red card for a last-defender foul on U.S. forward Mario Rodriguez.

But the U.S. could not take advantage. The Americans could not consistently connect with each other in the final third or threaten with a solid scoring opportunity within 18 yards of the goal.

Its disappointing for the US, which was outscored 1-0 despite having at least a one-man advantage for 45 minutes on the weekend. (In the scoreless tie against Brazil on Friday, the US had a man advantage after the 72nd minute then a two-man advantage after the 80th minute.)

The U.S. was also missing Guido, its starting central attacking midfielder, on Sunday. He aggravated a back injury early in the Brazil match and did not play against Turkey. Guido impressed in a 2-1 win over Korea Republic earlier in the week as well as in his short time against Brazil, showing good ball skills and vision. Without him on the field, the U.S. did not find any rhythm in its attack.

Turkey didnt showcase beautiful soccer either but it used set pieces and its speed well to beat the Americans.

Turkey scored its first goal on a corner kick when Aykut Giler headed Fenerbahce youth academy star Recep Niyazs in-swinger off the far post and straight to Ahmet Yilmaz Calik, who headed the ball into an open net.

They wanted it more than us, U.S. midfielder Nico Melo, who started ahead of Esteban Rodriguez on Sunday. They were better on set pieces.

Turkey had several other chances at goal that U.S. goalkeeper Kendall McIntosh saved. But McIntosh, who was playing his first game in the tournament, made a mistake on Turkeys second goal.

In the 71st minute, Enver Cenk Sahin outpaced Andrew Sounders 1v1 then beat McIntosh, who came off his line to charge Sahin near the left post, with one touch to get clear and another touch to score from a tight angle.

The U.S. had a great chance in the 60th minute when a long ball from the back Rodriguez chased it down, got to the ball first but was taken down by Turkish center back Tana Can Velioglu on a slide tackle from behind. Velioglu was the last defender and received a red card for the foul.

Marc Pelosi showed off his leg from long range on the ensuing free kick from 32 yards. But his shot attempt to the upper 90 of the goal was parried away in spectacular fashion by the diving Turkish goalkeeper Sercan Sen.

Turkey responded immediately after the red card, taking off midfielder Mehmet Erkut Senturk and replacing him with defender Burak Yilmaz. Cabrera countered, adding forward Daniel Flores for defensive midfielder Tarik Salkicic.

But neither that change nor one that sent Paul Arriola, another forward, in for defender Kellyn Acosta in the 83rd minute, was enough for the U.S. to find that elusive goal.

Americans Abroad: Weekend Rewind | Soccer By Ives

By FRANCO PANIZO

U.S. national team fans know all about Carlos Bocanegras heading ability, and now St. Etienne fans do too.

Bocanegra scored his first goal for St. Etienne in the clubs 2-2 draw with Bordeaux by losing his mark and heading home a free kick from close range. The goal, which was Bocanegras first at the club level since March, gave St. Etienne the lead, but a late score from Bordeaux would negate it.

Michael Bradley also scored this weekend, but his goal came in a losing effort as Borussia Moenchengladbach lost to Hannover 96, 2-1. Bradley whipped in a free kick from distance, but no one got on the end of it and it bounced into the back of the net. Bradley now has three goals in the Bundesliga campaign.

Michael Parkhurst wasnt on the scoresheet, but he did put in a 90-minute showing at right back for FC Nordsjaelland in its 2-1 victory against Horsens. Should Parkhurst continue to get minutes at that position, he might warrant a look there for the U.S. national team.

Here is how the Americans Abroad performed this weekend:

England

PREMIERSHIP

Tim Howardstarted, played 90 minutes, received a yellow card for a foul that led to a penalty kick and made three saves in Evertons 1-1 draw vs. Chelsea on Saturday.Clint Dempseystarted, played 90 minutes, and had an ASSISTin Fulhams 2-1 loss vs. Arsenal on Saturday.

http://video.rutube.ru/ce7080434311635caa65a9ce05525c81

Eddie Johnsoncame off the bench and played 1 minute for Fulham.Brad Friedeland Aston Villa play Liverpool on Monday.Brad Guzanand Aston Villa play Liverpool on Monday.Eric Lichajand Aston Villa play Liverpool on Monday.Marcus Hahnemanndressed but did not play in Wolverhampton Wanderers 3-0 loss vs. Blackburn Rovers on Saturday.Jonathan Spectorstarted and played 90 minutes in West Ham Uniteds 1-0 loss vs. Sunderland on Sunday.Stuart Holdendid not dress in Bolton Wanderers 1-0 loss vs. Manchester City on Saturday. He is recovering from a thigh injury.

CHAMPIONSHIP

Conor Doyledressed but did not play in Derby Countys 2-1 loss vs. Norwich City on Saturday.Zak Whitbreaddid not dress in Norwich Citys 2-1 win vs. Derby County on Saturday. He is recovering from a calf injury.

LEAGUE ONE

Frank Simekand Carlisle Uniteds game vs. Leyton Orient on Saturday was postponed.Mike Grellaand Carlisle Uniteds game vs. Leyton Orient on Saturday was postponed.Anton Peterlinand Plymouth Argyles game vs. Milton Keynes Dons on Saturday was postponed.Jemal Johnsonand Milton Keynes Dons game vs. Plymouth Argyle on Saturday was postponed.

Scotland

Maurice Eduand Rangers did not play this weekend.Dominic Cerviand Celtic did not play this weekend.

Spain

Jozy Altidoredressed but did not play inVillarreals 1-0 win vs. Sevilla FC on Saturday.

Italy

Oguchi Onyewudid not dress in AC Milans 3-0 win vs. Brescia on Saturday.

Germany

BUNDESLIGA

Steve Cherundolostarted and played 90 minutes in Hannover 96s 2-1 win vs. Borussia Moenchengladbach on Saturday.DaMarcus Beasleydressed but did not play for Hannover 96.Michael Bradleystarted, played 90 minutes and scored a GOALin Borussia Moenchengladbachs 2-1 loss vs. Hannover 96 on Saturday.

http://video.rutube.ru/103134ded9fe9ede1c258aec671c75c9

Jermaine Jonesdid not dress in Schalke 04s 2-0 win vs. Bayern Munich on Saturday.Ricardo Clarkdressed but did not play in Eintracht Frankfurts 2-1 win vs. Mainz on Saturday.Daniel Williamsdid not dress in SC Freiburgs 1-0 win vs. Hamburg SV on Saturday.

BUNDESLIGA 2

Kenny Cooperdid not dress in TSV 1860 Munichs 1-0 win vs. Hertha Berlin on Sunday. He is recovering from an ankle injury.David Yeldellstarted, played 90 minutes and made one save in MSV Duisburgs 3-1 loss vs. FSV Frankfurt on Friday.Luis Roblesstarted, played 90 minutes and made six saves in Karlsruhes 1-0 loss vs. Fortuna Dusseldorf on Sunday.Amaechi Igwedid not dress in FC Ingolstadt 04s 1-1 draw vs. FC Erzgebirge Aue on Sunday. He is recovering from a knee injury.

France

LIGUE 1

Carlos Bocanegrastarted, played 90 minutes and scored a GOAL in St Etiennes 2-2 draw vs. Bordeaux on Saturday.

http://video.rutube.ru/6b993f9f0bd42e87e049c012b0ad736c

Charlie Daviesdid not dress in Sochauxs 2-1 win vs. Valenciennes on Saturday.

LIGUE 2

Quentin Westbergand Evian Thonon Gaillards game vs. Stade Laval on Friday was postponed.

Belgium

Sacha Kljestanstarted and played 90 minutes in RSC Anderlechts 2-1 win vs. Zulte-Waregem on Saturday.

Denmark

SUPERLIGA

Michael Parkhurststarted and played 90 minutes in FC Nordsjaellands 2-1 win vs. Horsens on Sunday.Marcus Tracydid not dress in Aalborg BKs 6-0 loss vs. Odense on Saturday. He is recovering from a knee injury.Chris Rolfedid not dress for Aalborg BK. He is recovering from a hamstring injury.

What do you think of these performances? Why do you think Bocanegra is such a threat on set pieces? Should Bradley take free kicks for the U.S. national team from now on? Should Parkhurst get a look at right back for the national team in the future?

Share your thoughts below.

Monday Kickoff: Barca trio vie for award, Friedel eyes MLS return and more | Soccer By Ives

When discussing the best players in the world, the conversation tends to drift toward Barcelonas star-studded squad. When selecting the best player in the world for 2010, the decision will also come down to one of the Spanish champions many maestros.

Lionel Messi, Xavi and Andres Iniesta are the three finalists for the Ballon dOr, the newly-revamped award which is a combination of the long-standing Ballon dOr and FIFA World Player of the Year award.

Messi, Xavi and Iniesta edged out several other quality candidates, including Dutch midfielder Wesley Sneijder and Portuguese star Cristiano Ronaldo.

Iniesta is being reported as the winner by some media outlets in Europe.

FIFA has also named the three finalists for Manager of the Year, with Spain manager Vicente Del Bosque, Barcelona manager Pep Guardiola and Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho on that list.

Here are some other stories from Monday morning and the weekend to get your day and week going:

FRIEDEL CONSIDERING MLS RETURN

Former U.S. national team goalkeeper Brad Friedel has spent more than a dozen years plying his trade in Europe, but he may be ready to return to Major League Soccer.

Friedel is reportedly pondering an offer to be a player-coach for the Columbus Crew as talks with current club Aston Villa over a new contract have come to a halt. The 39-year-old standout could still remain in England, but a return to the Crew could make for an interesting proposition.

Columbus currently boasts Wil Hesmer in goal and while he is one of the better young goalkeepers in the league the Crew would be hard-pressed to pass on the chance to bring back Friedel, who played for Columbus in 1996 and 1997.

NOTRE DAME WOMEN WIN NCAA TITLE

The Notre Dame womens team earned its third NCAA championship on Sunday with a 1-0 win against Stanford.

Adriana Leon scored the lone goal of the match to help snap Stanfords 22-match unbeaten streak and make the Fighting Irish only the second womens team to win three or more NCAA titles (North Carolina being the other).

MONTERREY WINS MEXICAN APERTURA CROWN

Monterrey rode a pair of goals from Humberto Suazo to defeat Santos Laguna, 3-0, to clinch the Mexican Apertura championship on Sunday. The three-goal victory erased the 3-2 deficit from the first leg.

RICHARDS, CUMMINGS LEAD JAMAICA TO DIGICEL TITLE

Powered by an Omar Cummings goal and a Golden Boot performance from Dane Richards, the Jamaican national team captured the Digicel Caribbean Cup on Sunday, beating Guadeloupe in penalty kicks to take the Caribbean title.

Cummings scored the lone goal in regulation for the Reggae Boyz, and after overtime could not produce a winner, Jamaica finished off Guadeloupe with a perfect round of penalties.

NEWCASTLE FIRES HUGHTON

Newcastlehas fired Chris Hughtonas manager just a day after the Magpies dropped a 3-1 decision to West Brom.

The firing came amid speculation that the club could be ready to make a move, but the firing is coming under heavy criticism because of Hughtons efforts to bring Newcastle back up after being relegated. There is no word on a replacement yet.

What do you think of these developments? Who gets your Ballon dOr vote? Like the idea of Friedel returning to MLS? Stunned at Newcastles move to fire Hughton?

Share your thoughts below.

European Weekend Rewind: Arsenal goes top, Lille takes France lead and more | Soccer By Ives

By IAN HOLLIDAY

Chelseas woes looked like they would end this weekend against Everton with the club doing what title contenders do: winning a match it probably deserved to lose. Instead, justice was served for the Toffees, who created chance after chance before Jermaine Beckfords 86th minute header finally extended the Blues Premier League winless streak to four matches.

Chelsea has now won just one of its last six Premier League matches, and has slipped to third place in the league. Ahead of the Blues are Manchester United, which got an unexpected break after its match at Blackpool was postponed due to an icy pitch, and Arsenal, which moved to the top of the table with a 2-1 win over Fulham. Meanwhile, Manchester City have narrowed the gap between first and fourth to just three points, earning a hard-fought 1-0 victory over Bolton.

The only league with a more competitive title race than the Premier Leagues right now is Frances Ligue 1, where three points separate first from sixth, and last weeks leader fell to fourth after this weeks results. Leading, for now, is Lille, which stomped Lorient 6-3 on Sunday in a back-and-forth match that had been rescheduled from the day before.

Here is a rundown of all the weekend scores from Europes top leagues:

ENGLAND

As Aston Villa prepares for its Monday night match at Liverpool, the club finds itself in an unexpected position for a squad accustomed to challenging for a place in European competition. The Villans are currently in 16th place, just two points clear of the Premier League drop zone, meaning they could be in for a relegation battle if their form doesnt improve soon. If such a battle does happen, Villas American trio of Brad Friedel, Brad Guzan, and Eric Lichaj likely wont be the only Yanks playing for their Premiership lives. Clint Dempseys Fulham are currently 17th, two points below Villa and out of the drop zone only on goal differential. Tim Howards Everton is not much better, one place above Villa on goal differential. West Ham is last-placed at the moment, despite another good performance from American Jonathan Spector in midfield on Sunday. At the moment, the only American in the Premier League who looks safe is Stuart Holden, whose Bolton is in sixth.

Arsenal 2, Fulham 1

Chelsea 1, Everton 1

Manchester City 1, Bolton 0

Blackburn 3, Wolverhampton 0

Birmingham City 1, Tottenham 1

Wigan Athletic 2, Stoke City 2

West Bromwich Albion 3, Newcastle United 1

Sunderland 1, West Ham United 0

Blackpool v. Manchester United (postponed)

Monday: Liverpool v. Aston Villa

SPAIN

While La Liga boasts the two best clubs in the world at the moment in Barcelona and Real Madrid, the rest of the league is mired in mediocrity. Behind the big two are Villarreal and Espanyol on 30 and 28 points, respectively. Both clubs have been fairly consistent so far, but Espanyol especially is probably playing above its actual talent-level. Beyond the top four, few teams have demonstrated much quality. Just three points separate sixth-placed Real Sociedad from 11th-placed Athletic Bilbao, and those three points were earned Sunday, when Real beat Athletic 2-0. Elsewhere, 15th-placed Levante defeated 8th-placed Atletico Madrid, a result not uncommon in the bowels of this La Liga season, where precious little seems to separate the mid-table teams from the bottom-feeders.

Levante 2, Atletico Madrid 0

Osasuna 0, Barcelona 3

Real Madrid 2, Valencia 0

Espanyol 1, Sporting Gijon 0

Malaga 4, Racing Santander 1

Getafe 3, Mallorca 0

Almeria 1, Real Zaragoza 1

Villarreal 1, Sevilla 0

Real Sociedad 2, Athletic Bilbao 0

Monday: Deportivo La Coruna v. Hercules

ITALY

After 15 rounds of a soccer competition, the elite clubs begin to separate themselves from the rest of the pack. The same may be said for the relegation fodder in this Serie A season. After 15 rounds, four clubs have separated themselves from the pack in the wrong direction. Cesena, Brescia, and Lecce are teams 17-19 in Italy right now. All of them have 12 points, four behind Bologna, which has a game in hand against Chievo on Wednesday. If Bologna gets a result, those three clubs, along with last-placed Bari, which has 10 points, will be even further adrift, left fighting amongst themselves for the last spot in the safety zone.

Lazio 3, Inter Milan 1

Chievo 2, AS Roma 2

AC Milan 3, Brescia 0

Firoentina 1, Cagliari 0

Lecce 1, Genoa 3

Parma 2, Udinese 1

Sampdoria 3, Bari 0

Cesena 0, Bologna 2

Catania 1, Juventus 3

Monday: Napoli v. Palermo

GERMANY

Just when Bayern Munich looked like it might have finally begun to turn its season around, the club found a way to lose against 16th-placed Schalke 04 on Saturday. Despite outshooting its opponents 17-12, and out-possessing them 67 percent to 33 percent, Louis Van Gaals side couldnt find the back of the net in a 2-0 defeat. Winning the Bundesliga seems increasingly unlikely for the Bavarian club, which sits 17 points behind red-hot leaders Borussia Dortmund. Bayern is only 6 points behind Bayer Leverkusen for the Bundesligas final Champions League spot, however, so a place in Europe is not out of the question, as long as the club improves on its current form.

St. Pauli 1, Kaiserslautern 0

Eintracht Frankfurt 2, Mainz 05 1

SC Freiburg 1, Hamburg 0

VfB Stuttgart 1, Hoffenheim 1

VfL Wolfsburg 0, Werder Bremen 0

Borussia Moenchengladbach 1, Hannover 96 2

Schalke 04 2, Bayern Munich 0

Bayer Leverkusen 3, FC Cologne 2

Nurnberg 0, Borussia Dortmund 2

FRANCE

Last week, Marseille looked poised to re-assert their dominance over Ligue 1. The club was ahead of Lille on goal differential at the top of the table with a game in hand. A win mid-week could have given it sole possession of first place and a clear path toward maintaining its lead. Instead, Marseille managed only a scoreless draw with Stade Rennes on Wednesday, and then lost 1-0 to Nice on Sunday, sending the French table back into chaos once again. Rising to the top this time is Lille, which defeated Lorient 6-3 on Sunday. Behind them are Paris St. Germain and Stade Rennes on 27 points, while Marseille has fallen to fourth with 26. The entire top half of the French table, from first-placed Lille to 10th-placed Montpellier, is separated by only 4 points.

Lens 1, AJ Auxerre 1

Sochaux 2, Valenciennes 1

Rennes 1, AS Monaco 0

Toulouse 1, Caen 0

Lille 6, Lorient 3

Arles 1, AS Nancy Lorraine 1

Montpellier 1, Lyon 2

Paris St. Germain 3, Brest 1

Nice 1, Marseille 0

St. Etienne 2, Bordeaux 2

What did you think of the weekend results? Concerned for relegation-threatened Americans? Surprised by Chelseas prolonged funk? Considering paying closer attention to the craziness that is Ligue 1 this season? Share your thoughts below

Who is your World Player of the Year? | Soccer By Ives

As you heard this morning, the Barcelona trio of Xavi, Andres Iniesta and Lionel Messi were named the finalists for the prestigious Ballon dOr given the World Player of the Year. As tough as it is to argue with any of those three selections, I cant help but wonder who most SBI readers would pick for 2010 World Player of the Year.

With that in mind, you can cast your vote here for SBI World Player of the Year (Call it the Ballon dSBI). Well include the Barcelona musketeers on the list, but also some others who deserve consideration.

Who gets your vote? Is it one of the Barcelona trio? How about Wesley Sneijder? Cristiano Ronaldo? How about a darkhorse pick like Diego Forlan?

Who gets your vote? Cast your vote after the jump:

poll by twiigs.comSo who gets my vote? Its so hard to vote against Lionel Messi, but given Spains World Cup triumph I have to give the nod to Xavi. Both are very deserving candidates.Who did you vote for? Who didnt make our ballot that you feel should have?Share your thoughts below.

Cast your votes in U.S. Soccer’s 2010 ‘Best Of’ Awards | Soccer By Ives

It is that time of year again. The time where American soccer fans get the chance to vote on the very best of 2010.

U.S. Soccer is once again running its Best Of Awards contests and you, the fans, are getting a chance to once again make your selections on more than a dozen categories, including everything from Best Soccer Bar to Best Soccer Blog.

We are once again in the running for the Best Blog Award, so if you want to vote for SBI, or for any of the worthy finalists in the category, you can do so hereor by clicking the green button at the top of our homepage. You can vote once a day for the rest of this week. Polls close on Friday.

To vote on all the contests, you can go here.

Who did you vote for in the other contests? Any finalists stand out the most?

Share your thoughts below.

Torres and Gomez deny reports of imminent MLS moves | Soccer By Ives

Pachuca teammates and U.S. World Cup team members Jose Francisco Torres and Herculez Gomez have both been linked to moves to Major League Soccer in the Mexican media in recent days, reports both players are calling false and misleading.

Both players have just arrived in Dubai for the upcoming Club World Cup and both took the time out to clarify their situations. They each told SBI that while MLS is a league they would both like to play in eventually, neither has plans to join MLS in 2011.

I have no immediate plans on a return to MLS, Gomez told SBI. Its the league that formed me as a professional, and I plan on returning home. Just not as fast as some people are saying.

Torres also denied reports suggesting that hes ready to make a move to MLS in a bid for more playing time now that he has seen his minutes diminish at Pachuca.

Right now Im concentrating on extending my international career, Torres said. MLS is an option. Just not an immediate one.

Torres clarification will come as disappointing news to MLS fans who were eager to see the skillful central midfielder make a move to MLS, but he has made it clear that he plans on making a move to Europe before considering a move to MLS.

The reports linking Gomez to a return to MLS ignore the fact that it has been less than a year since he left MLS for a short-term deal with Puebla, where he flourished and won a share of the Mexican Golden Boot. That successful run led to a contract with Pachuca.

Torres and Gomez are in Dubai for the Club World Cup, where they and Pachuca will face the likes of Inter Milan and Brazilian powerhouse Internacional. Pachuca opens its tournament on Friday against African championsTout Puissant Mazembe Englebert of Congo, with the winner taking on Internacional.

Tuesday Kickoff: FIFA won’t move World Cup calendar, Mourinho suspension dropped and more | Soccer By Ives

BY ADAM SERRANO

Despite the requests of Franz Beckenbauer, FIFA claims that there are no plans in the works to move World Cup 2022 to January.

Beckenbauer had requested that FIFA move the World Cup to January to avoid the midsummer temperatures in Qatar which can average 105-115 degrees, which FIFA labeled as potential health risk to those involved in the Cup.

Precedent does exist for this type of move with the 2011 Asian Cup, which Qatar will host being moved to January to avoid the high temperatures.The average temperature in January in Qatar is in the low 70s.

Here are some other stories from Monday to get your Tuesday going:

JOL RESIGNS FROM AJAX POST

Ajax manager Martin Jol has resigned from his position as manager of the Dutch giants. The season has not gone well for Ajax with the club currently in fourth place in the Eredivisie and eliminated from the UEFA Champions League. Jol will be replaced at Ajax by former Dutch defender Frank de Boer until the Dutch winter break. Ajax expect to name a new managing staff by the end of 2010.The former Tottenham Hotspur manager has been tapped by many reports to be a potential successor to Chris Hughton at Newcastle United.

LIVERPOOL CRUSHES ASTON VILLA 3-0

Liverpool relieved some pressure on embattled manager Roy Hodgson with a convincing 3-0 victory over Aston Villa. The Reds victory came without their stars Steven Gerrard, Jamie Carragher, and Fernando Torres in the line up. David Ngog and Ryan Babel added goals in the first half while Maxi Rodriguez finished off the match with the third and final goal. The victory catapulted the Reds into the top half of the table and put the Villans just two points ahead of the Relegation zone.

MOURINHO SUSPENSION REDUCED

Jose Mourinhos suspension by UEFA has been reduced to a single Champions League match. UEFA initially awarded Mourinho, a two match ban for allegations that Xabi Alonso and Sergio Ramos deliberately picked up second yellow cards in Real Madrids 4-0 victory over Ajax. The pair hoped to be suspended for Madrids final group match against French club Auxurre.

Ramos, Alonso, Mourinho as well as goalkeepers Iker Casillas and Jerzy Dudek were fined in the incident.

SBI Live Q&A set for tonight at 8pm | Soccer By Ives

If you enjoyed the first Evening SBI Live QA we did last month, get ready for the next one.

The night-time edition of the SBI Live QA will be back up tonight at 8pm for those of you who cant get your questions in during our daytime QAs, and for those of you who have just been waiting for the next QA.

Want to talk FIFA? Next months USMNT camp? The UEFA Champions League? We can do that. Want to talk music or TV shows? We can do that to.

Join me at 8pm tonight for what should be another fun (and lengthy) SBI Live QA.