What The Soccer Guys Are Reading – August 23, 2010

Fulham defender Brede Hangeland (right) scored a game-tying goal against Manchester United on Sunday afternoon moments after he scored an own goal to give United a 2-1 lead. (Photo Courtesy Nick)

The Guardian – Late dramatics rear head at Craven Cottage – Kevin McCarra

A saved penalty, an own goal and last-minute header were just some of the features of Manchester United’s 2-2 tie against Fulham at Craven Cottage on Sunday. Paul Scholes’ first half strike and Brede Hangeland’s “gift” wasn’t enough to hold back the feisty Cottagers. With the tie, the Red Devils sit in a six-way tie for third. Wayne Rooney was absent from the United starting 11 due to a stomach flu, while new signing Javier Hernandez showed promise in his first league start for United.

ESPNSoccernet – Wenger adds Squillaci to Arsenal back line

Center back Sebastien Squillaci is expected to sign with Arsenal on Monday after his physical with the club. The 30-year-old France International comes to North London from Sevilla where he made 49 appearances. The move is especially important for the Gunners who lost William Gallas, Sol Campbell and Mikael Silvestre from last year’s squad. With starting center back Laurent Koscielny suspended in Saturday’s 6-0 win against Blackpool, midfielder Alex Song started and performed well.

Irish Times – Newcastle put tough loss behind them, crush Villa

Andy Carroll’s three-goal effort sees the Magpies dismantle Aston Villa, 6-0 at St. James Park, overshadowing its opposition’s new signing, Stephen Ireland. Villa was doomed from the start as John Carew missed a penalty kick 10 minutes in, setting the pace for the rest of the game. Magpies announced signing of Ivory Coast international  Cheick Tiote from FC Twente at halftime. The win was Newcastle’s first in the Premier League since May 11, 2009 against Middlesbrough.

The Independent – High-scoring games early on begs questions to be answered – Phil Shaw

Chelsea and Arsenal’s six-goal routes bring into question the disparity that might have emerged in a league where the top team’s are often consistent. The Blues’ form and the weak opposition at the bottom of the table are possible explanations to the high-scoring games early in the season. However, other results in the league show that it may be as competitive as it’s been in years with Tottenham and Manchester City battling to a scoreless draw on opening day. Furthermore, Fulham battled with Manchester United to a draw on Sunday afternoon.

MLSsoccer.com – Dynamo receive at least a temporary boost from Ching – Dwain Capodice

Brian Ching’s hat trick and possible “goal of the season” gave Houston a surge heading into home stretch as it tries to win points to make the MLS playoffs. The Dynamo get its first win over an MLS opponent since May 22, as they are currently fighting for postseason spot in highly competitive Western Conference with only nine games remaining. The seventh-place Dynamo trail sixth-place Colorado by five points and fifth-place San Jose by six points.

The Guardian – Holliganism still an issue in England – Jamie Jackson

Despite years of proactive measures aimed at eliminating the issue, hooliganism still overshadows the English Premier League. With every club, no matter how small, maintaining at least one group of thugs posing as supporters, authorities have a substantial battle in front of them to drive it from England. Furthermore, the availability of cocaine has become the fuel of choice for many of these “firms.” Like most street gangs, the leaders of the groups bill them as families, but there’s very little love apparent in their actions.

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