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Rossi ready to report to Newcastle as Italian U-21 service ends.

Beasley hopes move to England will revive career prospects.

Onyewu sits, sparking transfer runors; Keller leads way in G'ladbach victory.

Johnson strikes again in Wolves win; Beasley stock sinks.

DeMerit is solid, Watford gains first Premier League point; Johnson scores in Wolves debut.

Convey helps spark Reading comeback win over Middlesbrough.

Johnson joins Wolves with 2-year contract; Onyewu might dress for Standard..

Keller records shutout, Mönchengladbach opens by defeating Cottbus 2-0.

Turned ankle is not expected to delay DeMerit's Premier League debut.

White explodes for hat trick, Gueugnon drops Montpellier 3-0.

Onyewu, staying at Standard, misses first two games with ankle injury.

Healthy Reyna sparks Manchester City to exhibition victory.

Russell signs to be second American at Denmark's Viborg FF.

Arena is hired by Red Bulls to revive flagging fortunes.

Whitbread signs two-year contract with Millwall.

West Ham acquires Spector from Man. U. on $926,000 transfer.

Onyewu's transfer to Middlesbrough is said to be near.

Promotion accomplished, Berhalter surprises with move to 1860 Munich.

DeMerit goal sparks Watford past Leeds 3-0 to join Premier League.

DeMerit, Lewis meet with life in Premier League at stake.

McBride voted Fulham's best player; Convey, Hahnemann rated best at their positions.

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Americans Abroad

Friedel is heroic in Rovers triumph; McBride, Bocanegra goals rally Fulham to victory.

Brad Friedel
Blackburn Rovers' American goalkeeper Brad Friedel is congratulated by teammate Robbie Fowler after he stopped two penalty kicks and made seven other saves to preserve a 0-0 draw with Sheffield United.
-- Blackburn Rovers web site photo --
By Robert Wagman
  (in Washington, D.C.)
SoccerTimes

(Saturday, September 9, 2006) -- United States goalkeeper Brad Friedel had one of the best matches of his long career, stopping two late penalty kicks to allow visiting Blackburn Rovers to escape with a 0-0 English Premier League draw today with Sheffield United at Bramall Lane.

Friedel chalked up nine saves, most of them late, and they were essential because Rovers managed only one shot on goal in the match.

After making only one routine stop in the first half, Friedel got busy and came into his own over the final 20 minutes. In the 70th minute he denied Mikele Leigertwood and then Michael Tonge. Then, in a bizarre stretch, three penalty kicks were awarded in 15 minutes, but none were scored.

United keeper Patrick Kennedy saved a PK from Rovers defender Lucas Neill in the 71st minute.

In the 77th minute, United striker Rob Hulse had his shirt tugged by Rovers defender Zurab Khizanishvili in the box. David Unsworth shot the subsequent penalty kick to his left, but was denied by Friedel with a full-length dive. In the 86th minute, an assistant referee ruled Neill had handled the ball in his box. Hulse hit the PK well to his right, but again Friedel laid out fully and snagged the ball.

Friedel added a final kick save on Hulse three minutes into stoppage to preserve the draw for Rovers.

Rovers and United, both 0-2-2 with two points, are among four Premiership teams yet to garner a victory through the first three weeks of the season. Blackburn must find some way to boost its attack quickly with a UEFA Cup first-round match against Salzburg of Austria looming Thursday

Bocanegra and McBride
Tomasz Radzinski (left) and Brian McBride (right) congratulate Carlos Boacanegra after his goal in the 89th minute which gave Fulham a 2-1 decision over Newcastle United.
-- Blackburn Rovers web site photo --
American striker Brian McBride had a late tying goal, and set up the winner by his U.S. teammate, defender Carlos Bocanegra, to lift Fulham to a rare road victory 2-1 over Newcastle United. Last season, Fulham was 1-14-4 away from Craven Cottage.

After Newcastle open the scoring on a header from Scott Parker in the 54th minute, McBride brought Fulham level in the 82nd minute. Parker had been marking McBride, but was replaced a minute earlier. Soon after, Fulham reserve midfielder Wayne Routledge sent in a cross to the far post where McBride worked free and stubbed the ball past goalkeeper to make it 1-1.

Bocanegra, who had been on the bench, but not played in Fulham's first three matches, replaced Zat Knight in the 78th minute. He pushed forward from the left side and was in the right place in the 89th when McBride headed Routledge's corner kick against the crossbar. Bocanegra collected the rebound in the left side of the box and beat Given from about six yards for his first goal since January, when his late header beat Tottenham Hotspur.

After being thrashed 5-1 by Manchester United on Opening Day, Fulham is now 2-1-1 with seven points in a three-way tie for fifth place.

U.S. keeper Tim Howard is off to a good start with Everton, earning a clean sheet in a hard-fought 3-0 defeat of visiting Liverpool in the 204th Merseyside derby match at Goodison Park.

Howard was on form throughout the entire match, starting with a save on a long Robbie Fowler shot nine seconds after the opening kickoff. In the 30th minute, Howard made a good save on Sanz Luis Garcia, then made two good stops in the second half.

In the 50th minute, he saved a Robbie Fowler header and stopped a blast from Dirk Kuyt 20 minutes later.

Everton, at 3-0-1 with 10 points, is off to the best start in 37 years, since it captured the first-division title in 1969-70. The Toffees are tied with Portsmouth (3-0-1), two points behind unblemished Manchster United (4-0).

American defender Jay DeMerit remained on the bench for Watford in a 1-0 loss to Bolton Wanderers, who prevailed on a penalty kick by Gary Speed in stoppage time.

Watford is last in the EPL at 0-3-1 with one point.

Robert Wagman is SoccerTimes senior correspondent.

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