It's the first Saturday of the Copa America Centenario and we're just getting into the swing of things for this international break. If you haven't already, check out our comprehensive guide on all things Copa. Luckily, no Lions can get injured in the making of this tournament, but it would have been nice to see someone representing Orlando on the big stages this summer. As always, The Mane Land will be your host for international action while Orlando City takes a breather. And we've got some Lion Links for you with that in mind.
U.S. Drops Copa Opener, 2-0
It took less than 10 minutes for the United States to fall behind FIFA's fourth-ranked team, Colombia last night at Levi's Stadium in the opening game of the 2016 Copa America Centenario. Cristian Zapata put the visitors ahead off a corner kick and James Rodriguez struck from the spot after DeAndre Yedlin was called for a handball in the box just before halftime. That was all the scoring for the night as Colombia beat the U.S, 2-0. Our Daniel Byrd has your match recap. The Yanks will have to do better against Costa Rica and Paraguay to get out of the group stage. We'll be on hand tonight at Camping World Stadium to cover the other first-round Group A match.
Orlando City and Nutrition
Rikki Keen, Orlando City's nutritionist, sat down with the team to talk about how the Lions stay refueled during the season. If you're interested on what limitations the players have and how the backroom staff keeps their energy up consistently, it's a great video. Interesting to see the back-and-forth between Keen and the team's chef on what they can and can't have before matches. Plus, apparently, Brek Shea and Servando Carrasco make some killer protein shakes.
Klinsmann Throws some Shade
USMNT boss Jurgen Klinsmann took some of his players to task yesterday, calling some of the senior players a lost generation that did not live up to expectations. Orlando City fullback Brek Shea was among those called out by name by the German, who also listed Mix Diskerud, Sean Johnson, and Bill Hamid as players who could have been far better. He questioned their drive and commitment in training as the main reasons for their failure to achieve greater success. And sure, Diskerud and Shea moved to MLS from European leagues and Johnson has failed to impress at Chicago recently, but Hamid is a top MLS 'keeper who is still only 25. Part of the problem has always been the United States supporters over-hyping youth prospects like soccer fans are wont to do, like we're seeing with Christian Pulisic and Darlington Nagbe now, but not all talent can pan out.
USWNT Bound to CBA No-Strike Clause
The ongoing battle between the USWNT and United States Soccer over fair wages has taken a turn and it doesn't favor the players. A federal judge ruled that, according to the CBA, the women do not have the right to strike leading up to the Rio Olympics this summer. The CBA was signed in 2006. It will be interesting to see how the team proceeds now without the legal power to strike.
FIFA Scandal Update
Some numbers came out regarding the amount of money floated between some of the formerly high ranking members of FIFA. Unsurprisingly, everyone's favorite evil villain, Sepp Blatter, was at the center of it. Blatter, Jerome Valcke, and Markus Kattner allegedly paid each other bonuses totalling approximately $80 million. This is hardly unexpected given that Kattner was fired last month for giving himself secret bonuses, but it's more proof in the case against Blatter, who received $34 million of the $80 million from the nonprofit organization. Blatter and his representation are attempting to prove that the payments were justified, but they've got a bit of an uphill battle.
That's all for this Saturday's edition of Lion Links, hopefully the Lions can get through this rest week unscathed! Until next time, Mane Landers.