US Open Cup, Copa America, and Euro 2016

Friday, Italy v. Sweden.

UPDATE: Ugh. Italy wins it 1-0 on a late goal.

Tuesday night at the Stub Hub, LA Galaxy vs. La Maquina FC in a 4th round US Open Cup. Anticipating that the Galaxy "B-team" will be on the field tonight in what should be an easy win.

UPDATE: Last time I try to predict an "easy win!" LAG got a 1-0 lead but then a foolish red-card (aren't they all?) put them in danger. Indeed the score was tied 1-1 where it remained for regular time. In extra time, LAG picked up a "gift" of a goal when many players on both sides did not play to the whistle.

After that, LAG got two more goals for a final tally of 4-1 but more drama than the scoreline indicated.

Saturday night, Galaxy return to MLS action on the road up in Toronto. Hopefully, team USA will still be in the Copa America. I'm guessing Zardes (the one Galaxy player on the USMNT) would not be available for the LAG even if the US are defeated by Ecuador.

UPDATE: I was half asleep watching this match and switching occasionally to Argentina v. Venezuela. Argentina had an easy 4-1 win over Venezuela. Meanwhile, my impression of the Galaxy v. Toronto match was that it was headed for a 0-0 final. Galaxy offense didn't seem to be doing much. Unfortunately, a late goal (76') by Toronto gave them the 1-0 victory. Galaxy had possession 58% but never really seemed to threaten as reflected in their being out shot 14 to 10 and 5 to 2 on shots on goal. Toronto also won 9 corners to the Galaxy's 5. During my time of viewing the game, I though Lleget had one good opportunity but scuffed the shot. Otherwise, not much else. Galaxy had none of their DPs in the game while Toronto had one. At this point, the Galaxy look to be headed toward a playoff appearance but probably an early exit. Of course, they still have time to put all the pieces together in the second half of the season. I think they have more quality players than last year but some of those players are now a year older.

Thursday night in Seattle, USMNT against Ecuador. Ecuador is a highly regarded team and the USA has only beaten them three times since 1984, the most recent being the recent friendly. But this is win-or-go-home knockout competition and the stage where the USA has not had a good track record. There once was a time that surviving the group stage was considered an accomplishment. Now, the bar for USMNT is to advance at least one round in the knockout stage. Can they finally do it?

UPDATE: "I believe that we will win!" Hah! They actually won! A dramatic 2-1 victory over Ecuador!

USA (ranked #31) v. Argentina (ranked #1)
Columbia (ranked #3) v. Chile (ranked #5)

Ecuador is ranked #13 so it was an upset for the USA to win! Does team USA have another one in them?