The United Soccer Leagues Annual General Meeting got underway Wednesday in Florida, with the Austin Aztex up for a couple of awards, and expecting to confirm some details about their first year in USL PRO. The Aztex "leaked" some of that info at a Supporters Union kick-off event Sunday: They'll likely be in a division that includes home and away matches with the LA Galaxy, Seattle Sounders, Portland Timbers, and Vancouver Whitecaps second teams, among others, and they'll start regional rivalries with the Tulsa Roughnecks and OKC Energy. Also, look for news of a Major preseason tournament (very hush-hush).
He's had his ups and downs, but it was good to see Landon Donovan go out on top, with the LA Galaxy's third MLS championship in four years. Their 2-1 OT win over New England set MLS Cup viewing records – up 85% from last year... The USA should be getting used to this Group of Death thing: The top-ranked U.S. Women drew by far the toughest of the six groups for next summer's Women's World Cup: Sweden (No. 5), Australia (No. 10), and Nigeria (better than their No. 35)... The European Champions League group stage ended this week, with Liverpool eliminated at home by lowly Basel, and Manchester United advancing with a win at Roma. With that, all four German clubs advanced to the knockout round of 16, which will be played in the new year – along with three each from Spain and England.