Good morning, Lion Nation. Your three-day weekend is over, but you can shake off your Tuesday morning blues with some Lion Links. Let's get right into them.
Orlando City Welcomes Miami Rivalry
If David Beckham ever gets a stadium deal, it'll make the OCSC front office pretty happy, according to this article that heavily quotes club CEO Alex Leitao:
Asked if Miami were a threat to the Orlando franchise, Leitao replied: "No, we would love to have them, this is just the rivalry we are looking for. Rivalry is important for our sport."
And as to whether the Floridian peninsula was big enough for both clubs, he replied: "Yes, it is, we wish Beckham would put together his plan and build his team soon so that we can play each other very quickly.
"Beckham had the chance to pick a market and he definitely did his homework," said Leitao in reference to a large football-loving Hispanic community in Florida. "In Miami he has found a good market to start a team and we hope they come to play us very shortly so that we can create a rivalry and beat them. That is what we are looking for."
A regional rival could be huge for the Lions. It's certainly done wonders for Pacific Northwest clubs Seattle Sounders and Portland Timbers. Plus, a nice, easy road trip for City's supporters would be nice.
Kaká Sits Out Brazil Training with Muscle Strain
Darwin Ceren injured his knee while on international duty with El Salvador. Now, we get word that the captain has picked up a knock as well. According to this story on MLSSoccer.com, the injury should not keep the Brazilian out of tonight's friendly against the USMNT.
Manager Dunga likes Ricky's experience, but says the team isn't counting on Kaká to make an impression for a full 90 minutes.
"Kaká can help a lot inside and outside of the field. When I talk about his excellent athletic condition, people don't realize we're also paying attention to his technical abilities," Dunga said during a press conference on Monday at Gillette Stadium. "He's shown an excellent level with his club, and he understands he can no longer be the protagonist for 90 minutes, but he can definitely make a difference in very complicated games."
Speaking of the Brazil Friendly...
The USMNT wants to take the next step toward becoming a formidable side in world soccer. To do that, and compete with the likes of the Seleção in competitive matches, the team must develop the next generation of players. Jurgen Klinsmann says that's a focus for the national program.
"I think these games help us for Gyasi [Zardes], for DeAndre Yedlin and for younger players. They come out of these games and, no matter if you win or lose, they come out of there and say, ‘Oh, actually, I think I can do it!' Like when we came back from Europe."
Orlando City Ratings for FIFA 16
It seems like FIFA 15 just came out but already we're looking ahead to FIFA 16. Some of Orlando City's players ratings have been released for the upcoming FIFA 16 game, due out at the end of the month. Kaká, Darwin Cerén, Aurélien Collin and Kevin Molino have their ratings out and they're not too shabby.
Kaká has pretty much the same stats as last year, except for his pace, which was downgraded by six points. Collin's card is similar as well. Slower, except the rest of his stats got a point or two upgraded and he still a 71 overall, like last year. Meanwhile, Molino and Cerén make their first appearance as players with actual pictures with their cards, so having them both at 70 is a pretty good start for them both.
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That's all I've got for you this morning. Hey, it was a three-day weekend and the first full weekend of college football so I'm actually more tired than I was during the work week a few days ago.