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Monday, November 8, 2010
EUROPE: Matt Taylor has the hot foot

By Scott French

Former Chivas USA forward Matt Taylor who has played in U.S. minor leagues and in Germany's lower divisions since leaving Major League Soccer in 2007, appears to have found a home at Rot Weiss Ahlen.

It could lead to another move, to a bigger club.

Taylor (Irvine HS/UCLA), who joined the third-tier 3.Bundesliga club in the traditional Muenster region of western Germany at the end of August, has scored four goals in his last three games as Rot Weiss has quickly climbed from 16th to ninth in the standings.

He netted the 81st-minute winner Saturday in a 2-1 victory at SV Jahn Regensburg, the Red and Whites' third successive victory after winning just once in their first 12 matches.

Taylor has six goals in nine games -- when he scores, Rot Weiss (4-4-7) is 4-0-0.

He tallied twice in a 3-0 win Sept. 18 over Carl Zeiss Jena, then started on his current streak two weeks ago with the second goal in a 3-2 triumph over Bayern Munich's second team. He scored two more last week in a 4-1 romp over SV Weben Wiesbaden.

EDU FIT: Maurice Edu recovered from a calf injury to feature for Scottish champion Rangers FC in last week's UEFA Champions League clash at Valencia and Sunday's Scottish Premier League encounter at St. Mirren.

The Blues showed little against the Spaniards, who romped to a 3-0 lead as Roberto Soldado scored two goals. Valencia, which moved two points ahead of Rangers with two Group C games to play, outshot the Scotsmen, 23-6 (13-1 shots on frame) and owned an 11-3 advantage in corner kicks.

Rangers heads into its next Champions League match, Nov. 24 at Ibrox against group leader Manchester United, on the verge of relegation into the Europa League. The top two teams in each group advance to the Champions League round of 16. The third-place teams head to the round of 32 in the second-tier Europa competition.

Rangers maintained its one-point lead over archrival Celtic in the SPL by beating St. Mirren, 3-1.

BELGIAN SHOWDOWN: Former Chivas USA captain Sacha Kljestan (Huntington Beach HS) started for the fifth and sixth successive games as Belgian champion RSC Anderlecht stayed in contention to advance in the Europa League with a 1-1 draw at AEK Athens, then managed a 2-2 draw with Club Brugge with stay within two points of Jupiler League leader Racing Genk.

Les Mauves (8-2-4) on Sunday take on KAA Gent (9-4-1), also two points back.

ETC.: Brad Friedel made two big stops, one with fellow American Clint Dempsey bearing down on him one-on-one, as Aston Villa tied Fulham, 1-1, Saturday in the English Premier League. The Villans led until Brede Hangeland's last-minute header beat Friedel to pull the Londoners even. … Philipp Lahm's 84th-minute goal lifted Bayern Munich to a 3-3 draw with Michael Bradley's Borussia Moenchengladbach, which has a bottom-of-the-table showdown this weekend with Cologne. … Benny Feilhaber (Northwood HS/UCLA) and AGF Aarhus (11-0-3) have won five successive league games to extend their lead in Denmark's second-tier 1.Division to eight points over Velje (8-2-4). … Yura Movsisyan (Pasadena HS/Pasadena City College) missed Randers' Danish SAS-Ligaen loss to Odense with a toe injury. No word on whether he'll be available for Thursday's Danish Cup quarterfinal against Lyngby. … Saint-Etienne has dropped to sixth in France's Ligue 1 after successive losses without injured left back Carlos Bocanegra (Alta Loma HS/UCLA). … Santa Monica's Jay Denny scored his first goal of the season in non-league Hednesford Town's 5-2 romp over Chasetown in the Staffordshire FC Senior Cup.

D CARLOS BOCANEGRA (Alta Loma/UCLA)
Club:
Saint-Etienne (France, Ligue 1)
Last week: Did not play, with neck injury, as Les Verts (5-4-3) fell to sixth place with a 2-1 loss Saturday to visiting Lorient
Season: 8 games (8 starts)
Next: Tuesday in Coupe de la Ligue quarterfinal at Auxerre, Saturday at 14th-place Valenciennes (3-3-6)

M MICHAEL BRADLEY (Manhattan Beach)
Club:
Borussia Moenchengladbach (Germany, Bundesliga)
Last week: 90 minutes as the last-place Die Fohlen (1-6-4) couldn't hold onto two leads in a 3-3 draw with visiting Bayern Munich
Season: 11 league games (11 starts) with 1 goal; 13 games (13 starts) with 2 goals in all competitions
Next: Saturday at 17th-place FC Cologne (2-7-2)

D JAY DENNY (Santa Monica)
Club:
Hednesford Town (England, Southern League Premier Division)
Last week: 73rd-minute substitute, scored in 85th minute as the Pitmen toppled neighboring Chasetown, 5-2, Tuesday in the first round of the Staffordshire FC Senior Cup; 68th-minute substitute as Hednesford Town (7-4-4) climbed to fifth with a 2-1 win Saturday at Tiverton Town
Season: 15 games (14 starts) in league play, 3 games (2 starts) with 1 goal in cup competitions; 18 games (16 starts) with 1 goal in all competitions
Next: Tuesday at Boldmere St. Michaels in the first round of the Birmingham Senior Cup; Saturday vs. 12th-place Cirencester Town (4-7-4)

M MAURICE EDU (Fontana)
Club:
Rangers FC (Scotland, Premier Division)
Last week: Started, played 83 minutes in a 3-0 UEFA Champions League loss at Valencia that left Gers 1-1-2 in Group C; 90 minutes in a 3-1 win at St. Mirren that kept the Blues (10-0-1) arop the SPL standings.
Season: 11 league games (9 starts) with 1 goal, 4 UEFA Champions League games (4 starts) with 1 goal, 16 games (14 starts) with 2 goals in all competitions
Next: Wednesday vs. 11th-place Hibernian (2-7-2), Saturday vs. seventh-place Kilmarnock (4-6-1)

M BENNY FEILHABER (Irvine/UCLA)
Club:
AGF Aarhus (Denmark, 1.Division)
Last week: 90 minutes Sunday as the first-place Dettvie (11-0-3) crushed host Fredericia, 3-0
Season: 12 league games (12 starts) with 3 goals, 14 games (13 starts) overall with 6 goals
Next: Wednesday in the Danish Cup quarterfinals against FC Midtjylland, Sunday vs. 13th-place Viborg FF (4-7-3)

G BRAD FRIEDEL (Bay Village, Ohio/UCLA)
Club:
Aston Villa (England, Premier Division)
Last week: 90 minutes, making four saves, as the 14th-place Villans (3-4-4) claimed a 1-1 tie Saturday at Fulham
Season: 11 league games (11 starts), 14 goals allowed, 44 saves, 4 shutouts; 12 games (12 starts), 15 goals allowed, 50 saves, 4 shutouts in all competitions
Next: Wednesday vs. 12th-place Blackpool (4-5-2), Saturday vs. second-place Manchester United (6-0-5)

M SACHA KLJESTAN (Huntington Beach)
Club:
RSC Anderlecht (Belgium, Jupiler League)
Last week: 90 minutes as third-place Les Mauves et Blancs (1-2-1) drew, 1-1, Thursday in a UEFA Europa League game at AEK Athens; 90 minutes with a yellow card as RSCA (8-2-4) drew, 2-2, Sunday with visiting Club Brugge.
Season: 6 league games (5 starts) with 2 goals; 2 UEFA Europa Cup games (2 starts); 11 games (10 starts) with 3 goals in all competitions
Next: Wednesday at Westerlo in a Belgian Cup quarterfinal; Sunday at second-place KAA Gent (9-4-1)

D DALLAS MOORE (Santa Monica)
Club:
Halesowen Town FC (England, Southern League Premier Division)
Last week: Idle; league game at Swindon Submarine postponed
Season: 10 games (10 starts)
Next: Saturday vs. 11th-place Bashley (4-5-5)

F YURA MOVSISYAN (Pasadena)
Club:
Randers (Denmark, SAS-Ligaen/Superliga)
Last week: Did not play because of a toe injury as the 11th-place Horses (2-5-8) lost, 1-0, Monday at Odense
Season: 14 league games (13 starts) with 5 goals, 22 games (18 starts) and 14 goals in all competitions
Next: Thursday in Danish Cup quarterfinal vs. Lyngby, Sunday vs. sixth-place Silkeborg (5-5-5)

F MATT TAYLOR (Irvine/UCLA)
Club:
Rot Weiss Ahlen (Germany, 3. Bundesliga)
Last week: Started, played 88 minutes, with winning goal in the 81st minutes as Rot Weiss (4-4-7) valuted from 12th to ninth with a 2-1 victory Saturday at SV Jahn Regensburg
Season: 9 games (9 starts) with 6 goals
Next: Saturday vs. 10th-place VfB Stuttgart II (4-5-6)