With summer coming on fast and the top European leagues having wrapped up their season we’re having to dig a little deeper to get our fix for the weekend but there is a gem or two out there if you
squint look hard enough. Here’s what we’ll be watching:
Houston Dynamo v New York City FC - 8:55p on Univision Deportes / Unimas
Yup, it’s the kind of weekend where one of your best opportunities to watch USMNT players in action includes watching the ageless DaMarcus Beasley.
Beasley was back in action last weekend as Houston defeated the Chicago Fire 3-2 for their third win in two games. Their recent hot streak has Houston in sixth place in the Western Conference, two points ahead of the LA Galaxy for the final playoff spot a third of the way through the season.
Houston host an NYCFC team that has struggled to get results on the road this season. The club has won every game at home this season but has a record of just 2-2-3 on the road. Houston will be looking to take advantage of the disparity to pick up their first ever win against the Eastern Conference’s second place team.
LA Galaxy v San Jose Earthquakes - 11:00p on Univision Deportes / Unimas
IT’S WONDO TIME!!!
Look, we’re trying people, if you don’t love Wondo maybe just try squinting harder while you watch. Wondo started coming off the bench in mid-April but has appeared in all 11 of San Jose’s games. He’ll be joined by Nick Lima who joined the USMNT for “Camp Cupcake” in January but didn’t appear in the riveting 0-0 draw against Boznia and Herzegovnia. The 23-year-old defender can play either right or left-back but has been deployed primarily on the right for San Jose who have just 2 wins through their first 11 games.
The Galaxy are coming off a rebound win after having lost their previous four games. Playing with 10 men for over half the game due to some guy named Ibrahimosomething getting a bit handsy with the opposition. Even down a man the Galaxy managed to score the games lone goal against Montreal’s defense, which is the most porous in the League. Former goalkeeping prospect David Bingham was San Jose’s keeper for two years before losing his job in 2017 and being traded to LA in the off season. He’ll be joined by Perry Kitchen and Sebastian Lletget a pair of mid-twenty year-old’s with USMNT experience who have come back to the states after trying their luck in Europe.
Fulham v Aston Villa - Noon on ESPN+
There’s apparently some other club competition happening on Saturday afternoon but the real action is happening a bit earlier Saturday when you’ve got a chance to catch USMNT player Tim Ream in a pretty meaningful game for his club.
Fulham will play for Premier League promotion in a one game playoff against Aston-Villa who they split the season series with. If you haven’t subscribed to ESPN+ yet (and have already used up your free trial) it will cost you five dollars for a month of access including this game and the MLS games for the next few weeks. I swear I’m not a shill for ESPN but that seems like a pretty good deal to me. Ream has been a steady performer at center-back for Fulham this season, a 90 minute presence in every match this season. It seems likely that the young defenders will be taking over the USMNT scene soon but it would great to see another American in the Premier League next season, lets hope Fulham and Ream can make the leap.
Sporting Kansas City v Columbus Crew SC - 6:00p on FS1
Two league leaders coming in on hot streaks face off as Sporting KC take on the Columbus Crew. The Crew have won their last three and haven’t lost in six games, thanks in no small part to Gyasi Zardes who is tied for the league lead in goals scored with eight goals through 13 games.
USMNT players Graham Zusi, Ike Opara, and Matt Besler will be tasked with slowing down Zardes for Sporting KC who haven’t lost in three games and are leading the Western Conference.
The USMNT will be in action Monday night with a friendly against Bolivia. The squad features a very young team and some fresh faces including Keaton Parks, Alejandro Guido and Matthew Olosunde who are getting their first taste of USMNT camp as well as four others (Alex Bono, Erik-Palmer Brown, Antonee Robinson and Josh Sargent) who have been in camp before but are still looking for their first cap. Stars and Stripes FC will be around for full coverage of the May and June friendlies including game previews, match threads, recaps, and ratings starting Sunday.