THE SOCCER REPORT

Messi, Rapinoe headline FIFA Football Awards winners; Houston Dash end home schedule on ESPN2

Credit: Adidas

Monday's FIFA Football Awards winners left plenty to talk about, and debate, as Lionel Messi and Megan Rapinoe were named The BEST players in their category. On the local spotlight, the Houston Dynamo picked up a second win under Interim Manager Davy Arnaud while the Houston Dash prepare to close out the season with a nationally televised home match on Wednesday.

Here is the recap of the previous week followed by a schedule of upcoming matches:

The Best FIFA Football Awards 2019

The 2019 edition of FIFA's annual award ceremony took place Monday night in Milan. The following are the winners of each category:

Men's Player: Lionel Messi
Women's Player: Megan Rapinoe
Men's Coach: Jurgen Klopp
Women's Coach: Jill Ellis
Men's Goalkeeper: Alisson
Women's Goalkeeper: Sari van Veenendaal
Puskás Award: Daniel Zsori
Fan Award: Silvia Grecco
Fair Play Award: Marcelo Bielsa

Men's World11: Alisson; Matthijs de Ligt, Marcelo, Sergio Ramos, Virgil van Dijk; Frenkie de Jong, Eden Hazard, Luka Modric; Cristiano Ronaldo, Kylian Mbappe, Lionel Messi

Women's World11: Sari van Veenendaal; Lucy Bronze, Nilla Fischer, Kelley O'Hara, Wendie Renard; Julie Ertz, Amandine Henry, Rose Lavelle; Marta, Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe

Major League Soccer

The race to the 2019 MLS Cup Playoffs continues with two weeks left in the regular season. Houston, mathematically still in contention, avoided elimination with a 2-1 comeback win over Orlando City on Saturday night at BBVA Stadium. The Dynamo traveled to Los Angeles on Monday and will play twice this week - Wednesday at LAFC and Sunday at Real Salt Lake.

Sunday's matches will air simultaneously by conference. The matches in the East will air at 4 p.m. CT with the West matches following at 6:30 p.m. CT. FS1 will feature a doubleheader with updates from all matches.

East top seven: 1. x - NYCFC (58), 2. x - Atlanta (54), 3. x - Philadelphia (52), 4. x - D.C. United (48), 5. x - NY Red Bulls (47), 6. x - Toronto (46), 7. New England (41)

West top seven: 1. x - LAFC (65), 2. Seattle (50), 3. Minnesota (49), 4. LA Galaxy (48), 5. Real Salt Lake (47), 6. FC Dallas (45), 7. San Jose (44)

Scoring leader: 29 - Carlos Vela (LAFC)

Assists leader: 19 - Maxi Morales (NYCFC)

National Women's Soccer League

Standings: 1. s - North Carolina Courage (46), 2. x - Chicago Red Stars (41), 3. x - Portland Thorns (39), 4. Utah Royals (31), 5. Reign FC (31), 6. Washington Spirit (26), 7. Houston Dash (25), 8. Sky Blue FC (19), 9. Orlando Pride (14)

Scoring leader: 18 - Sam Kerr (Chicago)

Assists leader: 8 - Yuki Nagasato (Chicago)

UEFA Champions League

Group Stage - Matchday 1 Standings

    Group A: PSG (3), Club Brugge (1), Galatasaray (1), Real Madrid (0)

    Group B: Bayern Munich (3), Tottenham (1), Olympiacos (1), Red Star Belgrade (0)

    Group C: Dinamo Zagreb (3), Man City (3), Shakhtar Donetsk (0), Atalanta (0)

    Group D: Lokomotiv Moscow (3), Juventus (1), Atletico Madird (1), Bayer Leverkusen (0)

    Group E: Red Bull Salzburg (3), Napoli (3), Liverpool (0), Genk (0)

    Group F: Slavia Prague (1), Inter Milan (1), FC Barcelona (1), Dortmund (1)

    Group G: RB Leipzig (93), Zenit (1), Lyon (1), Benfica (0)

    Group H: Ajax (3), Valencia (3), Chelsea (0), Lille (0)

    English Premier League

    Matchday 6 Results

    • Southampton 1-3 Bournemouth
    • Leicester City 2-1 Tottenham
    • Burnley 2-0 Norwich City
    • Everton 0-2 Sheffield Utd
    • Man City 8-0 Watford
    • Newcastle 0-0 Brighton
    • West Ham 2-0 Man United
    • Crystal Palace 1-1 Wolves
    • Arsenal 3-2 Aston Villa
    • Chelsea 1-2 Liverpool

    Top six: Liverpool (18), Man City (13), Leicester City (11), Arsenal (11), West Ham (11), Bournemouth (10)

    Scoring leader: 8 - Sergio Aguero (Man City)

    Assists leader: 7 - Kevin De Bruyne (Man City)

    Spanish La Liga

    Matchday 5 Results

    • Osasuna 0-0 Real Betis
    • Villareal 2-0 Valladolid
    • Levante 0-0 Eibar
    • Atletico Madrid 0-0 Celta Vigo
    • Granada 2-0 FC Barcelona
    • Getafe 4-2 Mallorca
    • Espanyol 1-3 Real Sociedad
    • Valencia 1-1 Leganes
    • Athletic Bilbao 2-0 Alaves
    • Sevilla 0-1 Real Madrid

    Top six: Athletic Bilbao (11), Real Madrid (11), Granada (10), Real Sociedad (10), Sevilla (10), Atletico Madrid (10)

    Scoring leader: 5 - Gerard Moreno (Villareal) / Karim Benzema (Real Madrid)

    Assists leader: 3 - Ander Capa (Bilbao) / Angel Montoro Sanchez (Granada) / Dani Carvajal (Real Madrid)

    German Bundesliga

    Matchday 5 Results

    • Schalke 04 2-1 Mainz
    • Hertha Berlin 2-1 Paderborn
    • Bayern Munich 4-0 Cologne
    • Freiburg 1-1 Augsburg
    • Bayer Leverkusen 2-0 Union Berlin
    • Werder Bremen 0-3 RB Leipzig
    • Monchengladbach 2-1 Fortuna
    • Eintracht 2-2
    • Wolfsburg 1-1 Hoffenheim

    Top six: RB Leipzig (13), Bayern Munich (11), Dortmund (10), Freiburg (10), Schalke 04 (10), Monchengladbach (10)

    Scoring leader: 9 - Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich)

    Assists leader: 4 - Jadon Sancho (Dortmund)

    Italian Serie A

    Matchday 4 Results

    • Cagliari 3-1 Genoa
    • Udinese 0-1 Bescia
    • Juventus 2-1 Verona
    • Milan 0-2 Inter
    • Sassuolo 3-0 SPAL
    • Sampdoria 1-0 Torino
    • Lecce 1-4 Napoli
    • Bolognia 1-2 Roma
    • Atalanta 2-2 Fiorentina
    • Lazio 2-0 Parma

    Top six: Inter Milan (12), Juventus (10), Napoli (9), Roma (8), Lazio (7), Atalanta (7)

    Scoring leader: 5 - Domenico Berardi (Sassuolo)

    Assists leader: 4 - Lorenzo Pellegrini (Roma)

    French Ligue 1

    Matchday 6 Results

    • Strasbourg 2-1 Nantes
    • Marseille 1-1 Montpellier
    • Nice 2-1 Dijon
    • Bordeaux 2-2 Brest
    • Reims 0-0 Monaco
    • Metz 1-2 Amiens
    • Nimes 1-0 Toulouse
    • Rennes 1-1 Lille
    • Angers 4-1 St-Etienne
    • Lyon 0-1 PSG

    Top six: PSG (15), Angers (12), Nice (12), Rennes (11), Marseille (11), Lille (910)

    Scoring leader: 5 - Moussa Dembele (Lyon) / Victor Osimhen (Lille)

    Assists leader: 3 - Four players tied

    Netherlands Eredivisie

    Matchday 7 - Top Results

    • Twente 2-3 Heracles
    • Vitesse 4-2 Fortuna Sittard
    • FC Emmen 3-3 Feyenoord
    • Den Haag 0-1 AZ Alkmaar
    • PSV 1-1 Ajax

    Top four: Ajax (14), PSV (14), Vitesse (14), AZ Alkmaar (13)

    Scoring leader: 7 - Donyell Malen (PSV Eindhoven)

    Assists leader: 6 - Dusan Tadic (Ajax)

    Portuguese Liga Nos

    Matchday 6 - Top Results

    • Belenenses 0-2 Rio Ave
    • Moreirense 1-2 Benfica
    • Porto 2-0 Santa Clara
    • Sporting 1-2 Famalicao

    Top four: Famalicao(16), Benfica (15), Porto (15), Rio Ave (10)

    Scoring leader: 6 - Pizzi (Benfica) / Ze Luis (Porto)

    Assists leader: 4 - Bruno Fernandes (Sporting)

    Scottish Premiership

    Matchday 5 - Top Results

    • Motherwell 1-2 Ross County
    • Livingston 0-2 Aberdeen
    • St. Johnstone 0-4 Rangers
    • Celtic 3-1 Kilmarnock

    Top four: Celtic (18), Rangers (15), Aberdeen (11), Motherwell (10)

    Scoring leader: 5 - Jermain Defoe (Rangers) / Odsonne Edouard (Celtic) / Ryan Christie (Celtic)

    Assists leader: 4 - James Forrest (Celtic)

    Mexican Liga MX

    Matchday 10 Results

    • Atlas 0-1 Toluca
    • Monarcas 1-0 Chivas Guadalajara
    • Necaxa 2-4 Leon
    • Atletico San Luis 2-3 Santos Laguna
    • Monterrey 3-2 Puebla
    • Pachuca 4-1 Xolos Tijuana
    • Club America 2-2 Queretaro
    • Pumas UNAM 1-1 Cruz Azul
    • CD Juarez 2-0 Veracruz

    Top Eight: 1. Santos Laguna (20), 2. Leon (18), 3. Queretaro (18), 4. Necaxa (17), 5. Club America (17), 6. Monarcas (16), 7. Monterrey (15), 8. Tigres UANL (14)

    Scoring leader: 8 - Julio Furch (Santos)

    Assists leader: 4 - Four players tied

    Liga MX clubs Tigres UANL and Santos will face off in a club friendly in Houston during the October FIFA International window. Tickets on sale at BBVAStadium.com

    Argentina Superliga

    Matchday 7 Results

    • Union 0-0 Rosario Central
    • Argentinos Juniors 3-1 Cordoba
    • Estudiantes 1-0 Patronato
    • Defensa y Justicia 0-1 Huracan
    • San Lorenzo 0-2 Boca Juniors
    • Atletico Tucuman 0-1 Independiente
    • Newell's 2-0 Aldosivi
    • Godoy Cruz 0-2 Banfield
    • Lanus 3-2 Colon
    • Racing Club 2-1 Arsenal
    • River Plate 1-2 Velez
    • Talleres Cordoba 2-1 Gimnasia

    Top four: Boca (17), Talleres (16), Argentinos Juniors (15), Lanus (14)

    Scoring leader: 4 - Nicolas Dominguez (Velez)

    Assists leader: 2 - Several players tied

    Soccer on the radio:

    Soccer Matters with Glenn Davis airs every Tuesday 7-9 p.m. on KFNC 97.5 FM - ESPN Houston. This week's guests include Houston Dynamo forward Alberth Elis and former U.S. Women's National Team player and national broadcaster Aly Wagner.

    TV listings (All Times CT):

    Tuesday, September 24

    12:00 p.m. - [Serie A] Hellas Verona vs. Udinese (ESPN+)

    1:45 p.m. - [English League Cup] Arsenal vs. Nottingham Forest (ESPN+)

    1:45 p.m. - [English League Cup] Colchester vs. Spurs (ESPN+)

    1:45 p.m. - [English League Cup] Preston vs. Man City (ESPN+)

    2:00 p.m. - [La Liga] FC Barcelona vs. Villarreal (beIN Sports)

    2:00 p.m. - [Serie A] Brescia vs. Juventus (ESPN+)

    Wednesday, September 25

    11:30 a.m. - [Eredivisie] PSV vs. Groningen (ESPN+)

    12:00 p.m. - [La Liga] Mallorca vs. Atletico Madrid (beIN Sports)

    12:00 p.m. - [La Liga] Roma vs. Atalanta (beIN Sports)

    1:45 p.m. - [English League Cup] Chelsea vs. Grimsby (ESPN+)

    1:45 p.m. - [English League Cup] MK Dons vs. Liverpool (ESPN+)

    2:00 p.m. - [English League Cup] Man United vs. Rochdale (ESPN+)

    2:00 p.m. - [La Liga] Real Madrid vs. Osasuna (beIN Sports)

    2:00 p.m. - [Serie A] Inter Milan vs. Lazio (ESPN+)

    7:30 p.m. - [NWSL] Houston Dash vs. Washington Spirit (ESPN2)

    9:30 p.m. - [MLS] LAFC vs. Houston Dynamo (KUBE 57)

    Saturday, September 28

    6:30 a.m. - [Premier League] Sheffield United vs. Liverpool (NBC Sports, Universo)

    6:30 a.m. - [Scottish Premiership] Hibernian vs. Celtic (B/R Live)

    8:00 a.m. - [Serie A] Juventus vs. SPAL (ESPN+)

    8:30 a.m. - [Bundesliga] Paderborn vs. Bayern Munich (FS2, TUDN)

    9:00 a.m. - [Premier League] Chelsea vs. Brighton (NBC Sports, Universo)

    9:00 a.m. - [La Liga] Getafe vs. Barcelona (beIN Sports)

    10:30 a.m. - [Ligue 1] Bordeaux vs. PSG (beIN Sports)

    11:00 a.m. - [Serie A] Sampdoria vs. Inter (ESPN+)

    11:30 a.m. - [Premier League] Everton vs. Manchester City (NBC)

    11:30 a.m. - [Bundesliga] Dortmund vs. Bremen (FS2)

    2:00 p.m. - [La Liga] Atletico Madrid vs. Real Madrid (beIN Sports)

    6:00 p.m. - [Superliga Argentina] Boca Juniors vs. Newell's Old Boys (Fanatiz)

    7:00 p.m. - [Liga MX] Monterrey vs. Tigres UANL (FOX Deportes)

    9:00 p.m. - [Liga MX] Club America vs. Guadalajara (Univision, TUDN)

    Sunday, September 29

    8:00 a.m. - [Serie A] Udinese vs. Bologna (ESPNEWS, ESPN Deportes)

    10:30 a.m. - [Premier League] Leicester vs. Newcastle (NBC Sports, Telemundo)

    9:00 a.m. - [La Liga] Getafe vs. Barcelona (beIN Sports)

    11:00 a.m. - [Bundesliga] Cologne vs. Hertha Berlin (FS2)

    1:45 p.m. - [Serie A] Milan vs. Fiorentina (ESPN+)

    2:00 p.m. - [Primeira Liga] Rio Ave vs. Porto (GolTV)

    4:00 p.m. - [MLS] NY Red Bulls vs. D.C. United - with Eastern Conf updates (FS1)

    6:30 p.m. - [MLS] Minnesota vs. LAFC - with Western Conf updates (FS1)

    Monday, September 30

    2:00 p.m. - [Premier League] Manchester United vs. Arsenal (NBC Sports, Universo)

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    It more of the same from the Houston Texans. Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images.

    Sunday afternoon provided a high-res snapshot of the state of Houston sports. The Astros, already assured of the best record in the American League, played a game they didn’t need to win. The Astros won, ho-hum, their 104th win of the season.

    Meanwhile, eight miles away, the Texans, mired in last place with fan support dwindling, played a game they really needed to win. The Texans lost 34-24 to the Los Angeles Chargers in front of (giggle) 69,071 fans at NRG Stadium. The Texans really ought to stop saying the stands are packed. Every time a team punts, and cameras follow the ball skyward, there are thousands of empty seats on display. I know the NFL methodology for determining attendance, (total tickets sold, no-shows don’t count) but it just looks silly when the Texans announce 69,000 fans.

    The Texans came close as usual before sputtering to another defeat. The Texans now stand at 0-3-1, the only winless team in the NFL. It’s the second time in three years they’ve started a season without a victory after four games. It’s telling to note that not one of the Texans opponents has a winning record for 2022.

    In other words, the Texans have played four games they shoulda/coulda won. Shouda against the Colts, Broncos and Bears, and coulda against the Chargers.

    Should/coulda four wins. Instead, none.

    That’s the Texans. They’re in every game but can’t close the deal. Yeah, yeah, on Monday we hear, “the Texans are playing hard for coach Lovie Smith” and “they’re competitive” and “they’re a young team.” These are NFL equivalents of a participation trophy.

    Sunday’s loss to the Chargers at NRG Stadium was straight out of the Texans playbook. Fall behind, make it interesting, lose. The Texans stuck to their script, timid play calling, momentum-crushing penalties (nine for 67 yards), self-inflicted drops, lackluster quarterbacking and Rex Burkhead on the field for crunch time. After one play where a Texan player was called for holding, the announcer said, “and he did a poor job of holding.”

    Statuesque quarterback David Mills keeps saying “we’re in a good spot” and “we’re improving.” Statuesque as in he doesn’t move – or barely moves to avoid sacks. Sunday saw his first touchdown pass to a wide receiver. He’s now thrown four interceptions in the past two games. Let’s go to the tote board: 5 touchdowns, 4 interceptions, 4 fumbles, 11 sacks, qbr rating 28.5 – good for 28th in the league.

    A bright spot, sort of. This was the first week the Texans didn’t cover the spread. They’re now 1-2-1 against Vegas oddsmakers, meaning you’ve won money if you took the Texans all four weeks. They head to Jacksonville next as early 6.5-point underdogs.

    Meanwhile, Alabama’s brilliant quarterback Bryce Young, who will be available for the Texans when they draft first in 2023 (as Paul Heyman says, that’s not a prediction, that’s a spoiler), suffered a shoulder injury last Saturday. The Texans need to take out a Lloyds of London insurance policy on Young.

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