Before I hit the highway to attend D.C. United’s match against the New York Red Bulls tonight, a few items to share:

*Rivalries are in soccer’s soul, and with MLS’s growth, the intensity of showdowns will increase. As my print/online story explores, both matches today offer more bite than the common league affair.

*On Wednesday, MLS matches featured four late meaningful goals. On Saturday, there were four early goals: Philadelphia’s Jack McInerney in the first minute, Chicago’s Marco Pappa in the second, Toronto’s Danny Koevermans in the fourth and Montreal’s Sanna Nyassi in the fourth.

The most touching moment, however, belonged to Los Angeles Galaxy striker Robbie Keane. After scoring against the Vancouver Whitecaps, Keane paid tribute to Irish fan James Nolan, who drowned in Poland while on vacation attending the European Championship. Keane video:

*Lionel Messi had three goals and two assists in the World Masters Tour exhibition before 48,000-plus at SunLife Stadium in Miami.

*European Championship TV today: England vs. Italy, 2:45 p.m. ET, ESPN, ESPN Deportes,