US Soccer Makes History in Mexico

US Soccer Makes History in Mexico

Finally! It was 75 years in the making, but the United States Men's National Team finally won a game on Mexican soil. They came into the game 0-23-1 all-time against El Tri in Mexico. Moreover, the win came at the Azteca, Mexican soccer's 100,000+ person capacity fortress.

And to think, all it took was former Union player Michael Orozco Fiscal scoring his first international goal by redirecting a speculative back-heeled pass/shot from Terrence Boyd past Mexican keeper Guillermo Ochoa. It's just how Jurgen Klinsmann drew it up. Oh, and it helped that US goalkeeper Tim Howard was the best player on the field.

Video of the historic goal after the Jump...

It's not often that three substitutes combine to score a goal, but that's what happened on Wednesday night. Brek Shea took on and beat his defender, got to the end line and played a dangerous ball across the six yard box. Terrence Boyd held off his mark and manged to back-heel the ball to an unmarked Orozco Fiscal, who was able to push the ball into the Mexico goal. From there, despite a nervy moment or two, the US was able to kill off the game.

Yes, it was only friendly. And yes, the ability to make six substitutions instead of the normal three helped too, but make no mistake about it, this was a historic win. Truth be told, Mexico outplayed the US all night. Were it not for Tim Howard's performance the US could have just as easily conceded two or three goals. But, and this a big but, the US is able to rely on the world-class goalkeeping of Timmay!

Howard robbed Chicharito on a deflected shot that wrong-footed the New Jersey native. He somehow managed to regather and shift his weight and momentum to get a hand on the ball. Later he absolutely robbed Chicharito again by parrying a header away and then pushing it out of harms way with his feet while prone on the ground. Quite simply, Howard was immense.

Without question, even more so than the US win against Italy in Italy, the victory over Mexico at the Azteca is the signature win of Jurgen Klinsmann's brief USMNT coaching career.

Eagles' Brandon Brooks gives father touching gift

Eagles' Brandon Brooks gives father touching gift

How’s this for an awesome deed?

Eagles offensive guard Brandon Brooks took to Twitter to show a heartfelt message, that included a photo of a new car he purchased for his father.

In the tweet, Brooks revealed the mindset his father has instilled in him growing up, not wanting to be average and more.

Nice gesture, Brandon.

Elements will play factor for both Flyers, Penguins in outdoor game

Elements will play factor for both Flyers, Penguins in outdoor game

PITTSBURGH -- The ice on Friday afternoon at Heinz Field was watery and slushy.
 
That’s because the city set a historic record at 78 degrees for Feb. 24.
 
So what were the ice conditions?
 
“They were pretty good,” said Sidney Crosby. “It was pretty bright there. Started off the practice and the sun was beating down pretty good.
 
“I’ve played in a few of these and the ice was pretty good considering how warm it was. It’s supposed to cool down and I’m sure it will get better.”
 
The Penguins will host the Flyers on Saturday night in a Stadium Series outdoor game.
 
Pittsburgh took the ice Friday at 4 p.m. The Flyers got on the ice a little more than an hour later and things started to cool down.
 
“We had a pretty good practice given the circumstances,” Jakub Voracek said. “This is a little better setup than Philly. The fans are closer.”
 
It was much hotter when Pittsburgh took the ice, but the temperature was still warm after the sun went down.
 
Shayne Gostisbehere said, “It was hot for sure. … It was fun, but it was pretty hot.”
 
Defenseman Radko Gudas said the ice surface was, “playable, but a little rough.”
 
On Saturday, rain is expected, with temperatures falling to 42 degrees by 5 p.m.
 
During the game, which begins at 8 p.m., the temperature is projected to continue to drop and there will be wind gusts up to 31 mph. By the end of the night, the forecast says temps will be in the 20s. 

Players are more concerned about the wind than the ice at this point. Crosby, who has played in three previous NHL outdoor games, said wind is a huge factor. It happened to the Penguins at the 2014 Stadium Series game in Chicago.
 
“It can definitely be a factor,” Crosby said. “I want to say in Chicago that was something we kind of had to look at. We felt it a little more there compared to the other two [outdoor games]. If it going to get windy like that, it’s something to be aware of.”
 
It remains to be seen how the NHL will handle which team goes into the wind first.
 
“Yeah, the wind,” Penguins assistant coach Rick Tocchet of what element will be a big factor. “I hope you don’t have to backcheck. Who gets the advantage? They change in the third period. But who picks what end? There is a wind factor.”
 
Tocchet rated the ice Friday as “a little slushy.”
 
“It was good early and then it got tough because it was hot outside,” Tocchet said. “But we got a half-decent practice out of it.
 
“The one thing, the puck didn’t bounce, which was good. Players can adapt a lot better when the puck doesn’t bounce. When things bounce, it’s a tough night.”