In news that shouldn't be too surprising, Michael Bradley and Carli Lloyd have been named U.S. Soccer Men's and Women's Player of the Year, respectively. Lloyd was an easy pick on the women's side. She scored six goals in the 2015 World Cup, including a hat trick in the final victory that gave the USWNT its first star since 1999. Bradley, while not the obvious choice that Lloyd was, led the USMNT in minutes this year and picked up his 100th cap. Considering the team's overall struggles, there wasn't really a better option.
The 2016 season will be the last without future MLS dynasty Atlanta United FC, so enjoy it, rest of the league. The highlight of opening day calls for an MLS Cup final rematch between the Portland Timbers and Columbus Crew SC at Providence Park in Portland.
Managers usually don't like it when the media declares them sacked before it's official. Louis van Gaal proves to be no different in this regard.
Rafa Benitez seems to be on his way out at Madrid — gee, who would have thought that was a bad hiring? — and the hot rumor suggests the club will reunite with ousted Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho. Since Mourinho just flamed out of his last reunification gig, Madrid might be wary of going the same route.
What's happening in The A?
Winners of five in a row, the Hawks return to action Wednesday night against the Detroit Pistons. Atlanta is looking to avenge an opening day loss to Detroit.