Welcome to a new week! The weekend's action came to a dramatic close on both sides of the Atlantic yesterday, and with the USWNT gearing up for another Gold Cup match, this week is poised to get off to a strong start. I'm Pardeep Cattry with the latest.

📺 Footy fix

All times U.S./Eastern

Monday, Feb. 26
🇮🇹 Serie A: Roma vs. Torino, 12:30 p.m. ➡️ CBS Sports Network, Paramount+
🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 EPL: West Ham vs. Brentford, 3 p.m. ➡️ USA Network
🏆 W Gold Cup: USWNT vs. Mexico, 10:15 p.m. 🌍 Paramount+

Tuesday, Feb. 27
🌍 Women's friendly: England vs. Italy, 12 p.m. ➡️ CBS Sports Network
🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 FA Cup: Luton Town vs. Manchester City, 3 p.m. ➡️ ESPN+
🌍 Concacaf Champions Cup: Philadelphia Union vs. Saprissa, 8:15 p.m. ➡️ FS2

⚽ The Forward Line

🇺🇸 Competition for USWNT roster spots heats up


The U.S. women's national team notched another win at the Concacaf W Gold Cup on Friday night, when they beat Argentina 4-0 and booked a spot in the quarterfinals in the process. Interim head coach Twila Kilgore made 10 changes to the lineup that defeated the Dominican Republic on Tuesday, leaving only versatile midfielder Korbin Albert in the team, and found success doing so. Jaedyn Shaw was the standout after scoring a brace in the opening 20 minutes of the game, and only bolstered her case to be on the USWNT's Olympics roster five months from now.

Though the Gold Cup will serve as a showcase for individuals competing for tickets to Paris, one of the biggest takeaways from Friday's match was the group's collective performance. Ali Krieger argued post-match that the showing against Argentina marked an improvement from the outing against the Dominican Republic, and she listed the attributes she found most impressive on Friday.

  • Krieger: "The never-let-up attitude and the consistent wave of attack. Even defensively, I feel like they weren't allowing Argentina even out of their final third and I think they're much more clinical this game. It just is exciting to see all of these young, talented players giving everything and it's a new U.S. women's national team that we're seeing and it's refreshing."

The USWNT close out the group stage Monday night against Mexico in a match that will be crucial for their seeding in the knockouts. La Tri will likely be the hosts' biggest test of the group stage, but the opportunity forces the question: Will Kilgore and company use the occasion to experiment yet again, or will they begin to lock in their preferences as the quarterfinals near?

That is not just a question about personnel, either. Between the first two Gold Cup games and the December friendlies, Kilgore seems to be previewing the formation-agnostic style of incoming head coach Emma Hayes. This experiment-themed Gold Cup is poised to teach us just as much about who will play for the USWNT at the Olympics as it will about how the USWNT will play once they get there, so even if Kilgore does not answer them against Mexico, those answers are coming sooner rather than later.

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🔗  Midfield Link Play

🥅 Late goals for the win

Late drama took center stage in games on both sides of the Atlantic yesterday, resulting in a trophy for Liverpool and a valuable point on the road for Inter Miami. Here's a look at the eventful outings in London and Southern California.

The kids are alright for Liverpool

Getty Images

Jurgen Klopp's farewell tour continued yesterday with a faceoff against Chelsea in the EFL Cup final, a match in which Liverpool came out on top with a 1-0 win in extra time despite a handful of things going against them during the 120 minute shift. The Reds entered the match without the likes of Alisson, Mohamed Salah and Darwin Nunez and only added to their injury woes when Ryan Gravenberch came off. Klopp was required to lean on a handful of inexperienced academy products to finish out the game, which arguably created an ideal situation for the Blues.

Yet, it was a Liverpool team with a mix of veterans and youngsters who held on and eked out a win courtesy of Virgil van Dijk's 118th minute header. The outing is the latest showcase of Klopp's impact at a club he's spent nearly a decade at, but as James Benge writes, raises yet another series of doubts about Chelsea's projects months into Mauricio Pochettino's first season.

  • Benge: "Pochettino may yet have questions to answer over the timidity of his side's late attack but it is not as if he was unwilling to change personnel up. Christopher Nkunku entered the fray in the 67th minute and once he got into more central spots before the full-time whistle Chelsea looked a threat. It was a situation begging for Mykhailo Mudryk and Noni Madueke, both on the pitch seven minutes into added time. Neither they nor their teammates exploited their fresh legs. Nor, it should be noted, did Pochettino adjust his system to put more pressure on the Liverpool goal before the shootout. Indeed, he noted that his side might have 'started to feel that penalties were good for us.'"

The inevitability of Lionel Messi

Getty Images

MLS closed out opening weekend with several layers of late drama, courtesy of the star-studded affair between the LA Galaxy and Inter Miami. After playing a scoreless match for more than an hour, it was the Galaxy who struck first courtesy of an impressive finish from Dejan Joveljic in the 75th minute. They seemed on their way to a win considering an overall dominant showing, but their prospects soured when Marco Delgado picked up a second yellow in the 88th minute. Four minutes later, the inevitable happened -- Lionel Messi scored the equalizer.

In one of Miami's only meaningful attacks of the night, Jordi Alba and Messi went back and forth in a quick sequence before Alba passed through a crowded box to find Messi making a run towards goal and scored from close range. It was definitely two points dropped for the Galaxy, who had 29 shots and 3.37 expected goals to Miami's 11 shots and 0.63 expected goals, but became the latest example of the on-field spectacle Messi has a long demonstrated habit of creating.

🔗  Top Stories

🔵 Everton points deduction reduced: Everton's points deduction shrunk from 10 points to six after an appeal, adding a new layer to Premier League clubs' understanding of the profit and sustainability regulations -- but not eliminating the threat that another points deduction could be on its way.

🏆 W Gold Cup watch: The USWNT remain atop the tournament's power ranks, while Jaedyn Shaw's stock is high in the U.S. player pool -- and Alex Morgan's is low.

🇺🇸 Good news, bad news: Weston McKennie notched two assists in Juventus' 3-2 win over Frosinone but dislocated his shoulder and will miss the team's next game against Napoli.

🔴 Arsenal thrash Newcastle: The Gunners picked up a 4-1 win over Newcastle over the weekend, shaking off a midweek loss to Porto in the Champions League and maintaining pace in the Premier League title race.

🇫🇷 Mbappe booed: Kylian Mbappe's farewell tour is not going as planned at Paris Saint-Germain after he was booed during his side's 1-1 draw with Rennes.

🇭🇳 Alberth Elis update: Bordeaux's Alberth Elis was placed into an induced coma on Saturday after a clash of heads during his side's game against Girondins, and has since successfully undergone surgery.

💰  The Back Line

💵 Best bets

  • FA Cup: Luton Town vs. Manchester City, Tuesday, 3 p.m.
    💰 THE PICK: Oscar Bobb to score (+220)
    -- City are the heavy favorites in this cup tie and so Pep Guardiola might offer some minutes to promising youngsters, including Oscar Bobb. Considering the 20-year-old already has his first Premier League and Champions League goal under his belt, Tuesday's match feels like a decent occasion to add his first FA Cup goal to his accomplishments this season.
  • FA Cup: champions
  • 💰 THE PICK: Liverpool to win the FA Cup (+330) -- City might be the favorites, but fresh off their big win yesterday, Liverpool have the goods to go deep in several competitions. The quadruple's still on in Jurgen Klopp's farewell season, which could provide plenty of motivation for the Reds to win a second cup this season.

📺 What's on CBS Sports Golazo Network

☀️ Morning Footy (Weekdays 8-10 a.m.): Hosts Susannah Collins, Charlie Davies, Nico Cantor and Alexis Guerreros help fans get their day started on the network's flagship morning show with highlights, interviews and the biggest soccer storylines. Morning Footy is also available in podcast form, so you'll never have to miss an episode.

📦 Box 2 Box (Weekday afternoons): The news-driven show quickly recaps all the latest headlines from around the world with panelists previewing the top matchups of the day. Catch Box 2 Box on CBS Sports Golazo Network on the CBS Sports app, PlutoTV and Paramount+. 

3️⃣ Attacking Third (Monday, Wednesday and Friday evening): The leading women's soccer podcast and social brand is now a live studio show. Just because the NWSL season is over doesn't mean that our coverage of the women's game is going anywhere. Our analysts will be breaking down the USWNT. NWSL offseason and European domestic season all winter long.

👟 Kickin' It (Tuesday nights): CBS Sports Golazo Network's unfiltered interview show airs on Tuesday. Hosted by Kate Abdo, Clint Dempsey, Mo Edu and Charlie Davies, the group chat candidly with the biggest names from the Beautiful Game and share their stories from on and off the pitch. 

Call it What You Want (Monday night): A weekly podcast where Jimmy Conrad, Jesse Marsch and Charlie Davies cover all things USMNT and the state of the beautiful game in the United States.

🥅 Scoreline (Daily): Scoreline is the newest place for fans to catch up on all the biggest news and results impacting global football, match highlights from the top soccer competitions and all the can't-miss goals from the day's action, starting Thursday and airing seven days a week.

📺 How to watch: CBS Sports Golazo Network is a free 24/7 channel exclusively dedicated to offering unparalleled coverage of all the top soccer competitions worldwide. You can stream for free on the CBS Sports appPluto TV and Paramount+.