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16-Year-Old Noel Buck Embracing Every Challenge As He Looks To Make His Mark With Revolution – CBS Boston

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FOXBORO (CBS) — Noel Buck is not your average 16-year-old. Sure, he still has to deal with bed head and some acne, but unlike other teens, Buck is now gearing up for his career with the New England Revolution.

He still has to worry about school, but that will now take place around soccer practice. Earlier this week, the Revolution signed the young Arlington native to a Homegrown Player contract that runs through 2025, plus a team option year.

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Buck is no stranger to the Revs, having been in the Revolution Academy since he was 12. He’s developed his game quite a bit over the last four years, and was named the Revolution Academy Player of the Year in 2021.

Now he’s preparing to head to Los Angeles with the team next week for training camp. It has been a wild week for Buck as he tries to find his way on the first team, but he’s ready to put in the work necessary to earn his spot on the club.

“A lot of it is just take it as it comes,” Buck told WBZ-TV’s Levan Reid at Thursday’s Media Day in Foxboro. “There will be a lot of challenges this year, my first year and rookie year, but you just have to embrace it. Come in with a positive attitude and be ready to work your ass off to even just get on the field. So I’m coming in and embracing everything that comes with it.

“It’s never going to be easy, especially at my age,” he added. “It is going to be tough but I’m ready for the challenge.”

That challenge will include balancing his blossoming career and life as a teenager. He’ll be finishing school online, and has just three semesters to go before graduating. And with his new status with the Revs comes a lot of added popularity.

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“A lot more people know me,” Buck said with a smile.

But the midfielder still has to earn his way in Major League Soccer. He said that being a homegrown kid makes it both easy and hard, but his New England teammates are happy to show him the way. He’s still in the middle when they do rondos at practice, but that is just part of being a rookie.

Buck knows that he has a lot of work to do with the Revs, but he already has a lot of experience to draw from. He played in 70 games while at the Revolution Academy, including 28 games for the Revolution II in 2021. He finished last year with five goals and an assist, becoming the youngest player to score a goal in the club’s history.

He has dreams of making a huge impact for the Revolution in the near future, and making a big splash on the biggest stage in soccer somewhere down the road.

“The next step is becoming a proper player on this team, a full team player starting games,” Buck said. “The long term goal is I’d like to go to the [Premier League] — that’s the tippy top goal. But I’m going to take it one step at a time, and that [first step] is to get on the field.”

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Catch Levan Reid’s 1-on-1 with Noel Buck on Sunday night’s Sports Final on WBZ-TV!



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Portland Timbers shut down by Philadelphia Union in 2-0 home defeat; coach Giovanni Savarese rumored to be joining Venezia

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In a showcase of one of Major League Soccer’s top defensive sides, the Philadelphia Union locked down the Portland Timbers 2-0 on Sunday night at Providence Park.

“A frustrating result,” Timbers coach Giovanni Savarese said. “What differentiated this game from one team to the other is Philadelphia scored two goals, and we couldn’t find the net. We have created chances, but at the end of the day, they took advantage of the two or three moments that they had. Philly is a difficult team to play against. If you don’t have a constant energy, they never stop. Credit to them to the fact they found two goals that was the decisive separation for them.”

The Union (6-1-6, 24 points) dominated the shorthanded Timbers (3-5-6, 15 points) in the first half, displaying why they are the leading team in the Eastern Conference with stifling defensive play all night. Philadelphia opened the scoring early, too, in a spectacular moment.

Daniel Gazdag’s bicycle kick made it 1-0 Union early, silencing the Providence Park crowd.

Philadelphia continued to lurk in the attacking third, but nothing came of their immediate chances. In the 15th minute, the Timbers suffered what could be a serious loss as midfielder Eryk Williamson came off the field due to injury, shaking his head in frustration. He was replaced by Santiago Moreno.

“Sometimes, you come to a moment when it hits you,” Savarese said. “All of the sudden you have injuries, you have health situations that prevent you from having a full roster. It’s frustrating not to have everybody available. Eryk I don’t think will be available for this weekend (against Miami). He was very smart to come out of the game before he suffered something more difficult to handle. I think it will be something that won’t be too long.”

At 23 minutes in, the Union led 8-0 in shots. Portland’s first shot of the night came on a Bill Tuiloma header in the 27th minute on the feed from Moreno, but it went wide left.

In the 41st minute, Moreno had an ambitious take of his own from just outside the box, and it ended up just high of goal.

A moment of intense disagreement arrived in the 44th minute as Diego Chara was given a yellow card for a challenge in which he led with his head, and multiple players from both teams jawed at one another (and the officials) in the aftermath.

“I feel frustrated in that moment,” Diego Chara said. “In my opinion, it was a 50-50 ball, and we crashed. I don’t know why I got that. It’s a target always from the referees when they give me a yellow card. I didn’t deserve that yellow card, but it’s nothing to do.”

The match officials described Chara’s card as a “reckless challenge.”

Portland went into halftime looking outmatched on every level. That trend continued in the opening minutes of the second half.

Philadelphia doubled its lead in the 48th minute on a header from Sergio Santos, making it 2-0 Union as the road side’s defense continued to limit anything Portland tried to put together.

In the 65th minute, Portland brought on Larrys Mabiala and Marvin Loría to replace Justin Rasmussen and Cristhian Paredes. The Timbers’ attack soon found renewed life as Loría pushed the ball ahead to Moreno, whose shot was saved.

Unfortunately for the Union, the ball fell right to the feet of Sebastian Blanco, who put it in the back of the net in the 69th minute. It was called a goal initially and Philadelphia’s lead appeared halved, but after further review by the Video Assistant Referee (VAR), it was disallowed due to offsides.

“Santiago Moreno was in an offside position when his teammate Josecarlos Van Rankin heads the ball to him,” the match officials said postgame. “The VAR was trying to establish if indeed, there was a touch by Josecarlos Van Rankin. Once the VAR found an angle which allowed him to confirm this touch, he recommended a review for an offside offence (sic) in the build up to the goal.”

In the 80th minute, Portland brought on youngster David Ayala for Josecarlos Van Rankin, adding another attacking talent as it desperately sought to break through for a goal.

Yimmi Chara had a chance from close range in the 86th minute, and Tuiloma had one of his own in the 90th minute, but both were saved. Beyond that, Portland had little to offer in the way of dangerous comeback scoring attempts. Philadelphia simply parked the bus in the second half, and the Timbers couldn’t often see past it, despite 12 shots and 11 corners. Philadelphia had the same number of shots and just five corners.

“Difficult match,” Diego Chara said. “We tried to win the game, but it was going in the wrong way. Philly did a good job. For us, it was difficult when we conceded that goal in the (5th) minute, and that changed our plans.”

Portland’s next match is Saturday on the road at Miami. Kickoff is scheduled for 5 p.m. PT (TV on Fox 12 Plus).

Savarese to Venezia?

Before kickoff Sunday night, Italian journalist Nicolò Schira reported that Italian club Venezia has selected Savarese as its new manager. The Timbers, in response to this report, told The Oregonian/OregonLive that “Gio (Savarese) is under contract for 1.5 more years and we have not been contacted by Venezia.”

After the match against Philadelphia, Savarese didn’t provide a clear yes or no answer to The Oregonian/OregonLive’s question about the report.

“I’d rather talk about the game today,” Savarese said. “This is the most important thing. I am the coach of the Portland Timbers, and this was a tough game to digest.”

To a follow-up question asking if he’d been in contact with Venezia, Savarese replied, “I’d rather stay on the game. I think that’s the most important part for today.”

— Ryan Clarke, rclarke@oregonian.com





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Pride Make Late Rally But Fall To Chicago Red Stars, 4-2

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ORLANDO, Fla. (May 22, 2022) – Orlando Pride (2-2-1, 5 points) fell by a score of 4-2 to the Chicago Red Stars (2-1-0, 6 points) on Sunday night at Exploria Stadium, in what served as the side’s third game in eight days. 

The Pride scored two goals in the second half, first from the head of defender Amy Turner and then the foot of forward Leah Pruitt, both notching their first goals as a member of the Pride. Orlando had an opportunity to add another in the 81st-minute, but Sydney Leroux’s penalty attempt was stopped by Alyssa Naeher. 

Goalkeeper Erin McLeod finished with five saves on the night. 

Orlando Pride Head Coach Amanda Cromwell:

“Obviously, we had tired legs. We had three games this week and they did not. There is still no excuse for that. We rested players [at the midweek] so we would be ready for this game. We had multiple players get minutes on the Wednesday game. The lack of energy is inexcusable. I really want to apologize to our home crowd because they deserve better when they come out to see us. You saw some of that energy at the end when we get two goals and also had a penalty. Their penalty, I don’t know, I was too far away to see really what happened. Even with all that, it is a penalty or a non-penalty away from being three-three, which is crazy.”

11’ – Sarah Griffith (Vanessa DiBernardo) – CHI 1, ORL 0

The Red Stars opened the scoring early after the ball was played through to Vanessa DiBernardo who took it to the end line and cut it across the face of the goal. Sarah Griffith was there and had her initial shot blocked up in the air, but Griffith was able to get her head to the ball and knock it over the line. 

54’ – Bianca St-Georges (Mallory Pugh) – CHI 2, ORL 0

Chicago doubled their lead in the second half after Mallory Pugh played a ball in behind the Pride’s backline finding Bianca St-Georges who fired it into the side net from a tight angle. 

64’ – Mallory Pugh (Ava Cook) – CHI 3, ORL 0

The Red Stars extended its lead after Pugh received the pass from Ava Cook and dribbled it to the top of the box, striking it with her right foot into the bottom right corner of the goal. 

83’ – Amy Turner (Courtney Petersen) – CHI 3, ORL 1

The Pride pulled one back after Sydney Leroux was fouled just outside the box after a nice run of play. Courtney Petersen took the free kick and sent it to the back post where it found Amy Turner who was able to head the ball past a diving Chicago goalkeeper. 

86’ – Mallory Pugh (Penalty Kick) – CHI 4, ORL 1

Chicago was awarded a penalty kick late in the second half and Pugh stepped up to take it. Pride goalkeeper Erin McLeod saved the initial penalty shot but the rebound fell right in front of Pugh and she was able to tap in the rebound. 

87’ – Leah Pruitt (Abi Kim) – CHI 4, ORL 2

Orlando found the back of the net for the second time of the night after Abi Kim took on two defenders from the wing and put the ball to the feet of Leah Pruitt who was able to turn and send a rocket with her right foot to the inside of the opposite goal post and into the net. 

  • Amy Turner’s goal marked her first goal in the NWSL
  • Leah Pruitt’s was her first in Pride uniform, and fifth across all NWSL competitions
  • Courtney Petersen recorded her third assist in regular season play with the service on Turner’s goal
  • With the helper on Pruitt’s score, Abi Kim recorded her first assist of the year and second in regular season play
  • After earning her first start on the road at the midweek, midfielder Viviana Villacorta made her first career start at Exploria Stadium on Sunday night. 
  • Head Coach Amanda Cromwell made five changes to her starting lineup from the midweek, with Courtney Petersen, Toni Pressley, Gunny Jónsdóttir, Darian Jenkins and Leah Pruitt all getting back in the Starting XI. 

Next Match: The Pride go up against the Washington Spirit on Friday, May 27. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. ET at Exploria Stadium, with the match aired nationally on CBS Sports Network.





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Charlotte FC overachieving, RSL bucking advanced numbers & where every team stands after MLS Week 13

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What’s the deal with these teams? NYCFC have probably been the best team in the league since finishing their CCL run. They’ve taken 19 of 21 available points, and have a +15 goal differential. They are now just fractionally behind LAFC in the Shield race on PPG, and are atop the East on the same.

They have done this despite constantly juggling injuries and absences – they’re down to their third-string right back, who’s actually a d-mid, and their No. 10 has had to be a No. 6, and their back-up LB has had to be their starting LB, etc etc etc. Everybody has to handle injuries, but I don’t think anybody’s done so as well as the Pigeons.

The one problem on the horizon, though, is the Taty Castellanos situation. In the 10 games he’s played they’ve scored 23 goals; in the two he hasn’t, they’ve scored once, and it was a PK (in this game!). Heber is back, but he’s not back, and if Taty’s sold this summer (seems likely)… how do you replace the best pressing forward in the league, who also happens to be the best playmaking forward in the league, and also happens to be one of the top goalscoring forwards in the league?

I think they’ll still be really good. But having an elite center forward has consistently been the difference, leaguewide, between being a really good team, and a team that wins hardware.

Sadly for the Fire, the only hardware they look like they’ll be competing for is the Wooden Spoon. Obviously that can change, and I’ll argue they’ve looked better in attack over the last three games as Chris Mueller has gotten into the team.

But that’s not saying much. They’re now winless in nine, Xherdan Shaqiri has been a massive disappointment, and the defense has consistently broken down after a promising start. I think they can point to the fact Jairo Torres has barely played as a mitigating factor (he only just arrived a couple of weeks ago and is carrying a knock), and perhaps moving Torres inside as a No. 10 and Shaqiri out to his more natural right wing spot could help fix things.

Though to be clear, I don’t think that’s how it was drawn up when they made those acquisitions. Rather, that’d just be Ezra Hendrickson trying to make the best out of a rapidly deteriorating situation.

So even though a lot has changed in Chicago, not much actually has.





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