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FA Cup 2738 43 Rob Stone - Kickoff 31549971 And while I wasn't on the subject... And+while+I+wasn%27t+on+the+subject... FA Cup

Finally, and I do mean finally, the New York Red Bulls named a head coach on Thursday. After some time as an assistant with the Red Bulls, long-time MLS defender Mike Petke got the call. I’m not sure what took so long for the team to give the promising, young bright American a chance at coaching in the league. If I were an MLS owner, I know I would lean heavily towards an American as a head coach, because of the intricacies involved in dealing with being in this league, and especially the college draft. I’ve always loved Mike Petke, on and off the field, and I wish him nothing but the best of luck with a franchise that could really use it right now.

Mike Stobe for New York Red Bulls - Getty Images http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/01/25/012513-FAC-gallery-7_20130125134532137_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/01/25/012513-FAC-gallery-7_20130125134532137_107_80.JPG
FA Cup 2738 43 Rob Stone - Kickoff 31549969 Stoke City vs. Manchester City, Saturday, 7:40 AM, FOX Soccer Plus Stoke+City+vs.+Manchester+City%2C+Saturday%2C+7%3A40+AM%2C+FOX+Soccer+Plus FA Cup

It’s a rematch of the 2011 FA Cup final, but this time there will be no Yaya Toure (away at the African Cup of Nations) there to get the game-winning goal for Manchester City. City have a couple of big dates in the league coming up, both of them home (Liverpool and Chelsea) but first, they have to go to a really tough place: Stoke City. I don’t think enough people are talking about what Geoff Cameron has done for the Potters this season. Whether he’s in the middle or out wide, he has helped solidify one of the stingiest defenses in the league, while also catapulting himself to the top of Jurgen Klinsmann’s center back discussion for the U.S. men’s national team.

Andrew Boyers - Action Images/Reuters http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/01/25/012513-FAC-gallery-6_20130125134358133_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/01/25/012513-FAC-gallery-6_20130125134358133_107_80.JPG
FA Cup 2738 43 Rob Stone - Kickoff 31549968 Oldham vs. Liverpool, Sunday, 11:00 AM, FOX Soccer Oldham+vs.+Liverpool%2C+Sunday%2C+11%3A00+AM%2C+FOX+Soccer FA Cup

I hope Luis Suarez and Liverpool don’t think I’ve forgiven them for what they did to my mighty Mansfield Town in their last FA Cup match – it still stings. Now they face third-tier side Oldham Owls, and Liverpool has been on an absolute tear as of late. In their last four league games (three wins by shutout, and a one goal loss at United), they’ve outscored the opposition 12 to two. But, up next in the league are matches at Arsenal and at City, meaning they really need to manage this road trip to the greater Manchester area with an eye on the Premier League prize down the road. I expect – and I think the hope is – that the Reds will make this a 45-minute game, and let the bench run the show in the second 45.

Carl Recine - Action Images/Reuters http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/01/25/012513-FAC-gallery-5_20130125134143131_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/01/25/012513-FAC-gallery-5_20130125134143131_107_80.JPG
FA Cup 2738 43 Rob Stone - Kickoff 31549967 Brentford vs. Chelsea, Sunday, 6:55 AM, FOX Soccer Brentford+vs.+Chelsea%2C+Sunday%2C+6%3A55+AM%2C+FOX+Soccer FA Cup

This is a meeting of two West London clubs (and one in which the Blues should run all over Brentford), but all everyone is talking about right now is what happened on Wednesday between Eden Hazard and the Swansea ball boy (what exactly is a 17 year old doing as a ball boy anyway - and how about the pregame time wasting tweets the kid sent?!). My initial reaction was that Hazard was definitely in the wrong – but the more I look at it and the more I’ve slept on it, I’ve had a change in my judgment. Any soccer player out there knows how frustrating it is when you try to remain up-tempo and get things going, and then somebody slows you down while also being blatant about it. I hope the ramifications and the punishment for Hazard are light. And frankly, Swansea needs to take some of the blame as well.

Rebecca Naden - Action Images/Reuters http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/01/25/012513-FAC-gallery-4_20130125134014129_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/01/25/012513-FAC-gallery-4_20130125134014129_107_80.JPG
FA Cup 2738 43 Rob Stone - Kickoff 31549966 Brighton vs. Arsenal, Saturday, 10 AM, FOX Soccer Brighton+vs.+Arsenal%2C+Saturday%2C+10+AM%2C+FOX+Soccer FA Cup

Did you witness the Gunners’ second half explosion on Wednesday against West Ham? Wow. Arsenal made a determined statement with four goals in the opening 12 minutes of play, as the big four of Podolski, Giroud, Cazorla and Walcott led the charge. If you’re an Arsenal fan, this is the team telling you that they’re more than just a squad on the outskirts of the big four – they are still one of the big boys and can make news, not only in the league and the FA Cup, but the Champions League as well. Those 12 minutes were one of the most dominating stretches of play I’ve ever seen any club play, period. Can they continue that impressive form? Consistency has been their problem all season, so it will be interesting to see how they do on the road against a lesser but tricky opponent at Brighton.

Alan Walter - Action Images/Reuters http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/01/25/012513-FAC-gallery-3_20130125133724127_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/01/25/012513-FAC-gallery-3_20130125133724127_107_80.JPG
FA Cup 2738 43 Rob Stone - Kickoff 31549964 Manchester United vs. Fulham, Saturday, 12:30 PM, FOX Soccer Manchester+United+vs.+Fulham%2C+Saturday%2C+12%3A30+PM%2C+FOX+Soccer FA Cup

Over the weekend in snowy London, Robin van Persie scored his 7th goal in his last six games for Manchester United, but it wasn’t enough as they suffered a 1-1 tie that felt like a loss for the league leaders. I still think that this is a club that has a real chance at winning the treble this season, and I don’t expect them to roll out a B team here. Whatever the Red Devils’ lineup looks like, it’s no secret that Fulham has had their issues lately, with just two wins in the last nine games. With United at home, they should pound on Fulham early and often, and end this one before heading into the locker room at halftime.

Andrew Boyers - Action Images/Reuters http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/01/25/012513-FAC-gallery-2_20130125133159125_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/01/25/012513-FAC-gallery-2_20130125133159125_107_80.JPG
FA Cup 2738 43 Rob Stone - Kickoff 31549963 Kickoff with Rob Stone Kickoff+with+Rob+Stone FA Cup

The FA Cup is back, and while I’m still recovering from the cruel loss handed to my mighty Mansfield Town by Liverpool in the last round, I’m looking forward to seeing if any of the lower tier sides can make a Cinderella run deep into the tournament. There are several opportunities for giant-killings on the weekend, so clear that calendar.

Read on to find out more.

Carl Recine - Action Images/Reuters http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/01/25/012513-FAC-gallery-1_20130125132751123_600_400.JPG http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2013/01/25/012513-FAC-gallery-1_20130125132751123_107_80.JPG
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http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/24/022414-Rumor-Mill-GUNDO-GONE-DG-PI_20140224164223176_136_102.JPG Top football/soccer transfer rumors - Feb. 23-Mar. 2 Check out the latest rumors doing the rounds... Check out the latest rumors doing the rounds throughout world football. Robin van Persie's rumored return to Arsenal would be beyond controversial in many ways. Feb 26, 2014 8:47 AM ET 1 5 /foxsoccer/world/lists/transfer-rumors-february-24-march-2-football-soccer-players-teams-022414
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http://static.foxsports.com/content/fsc/img/2014/02/17/021714-SOCCER-Shock-Waves-HF-PI_20140217182428996_136_102.JPG Top football/soccer transfer rumors - Feb. 17-23 Check out the latest rumors doing the rounds... Check out the latest rumors doing the rounds throughout world football. Robin van Persie's rumored return to Arsenal would be beyond controversial in many ways. Feb 20, 2014 10:42 AM ET 1 5 /foxsoccer/world/lists/transfer-rumors-february-17-23-football-soccer-players-teams-021714