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Lion Links: 10/27/17

Spector has a vote, Leitao blindsided, Expansion news, Austin conspiracies, and more.

MLS: Columbus Crew SC at Orlando City SC
Jonathan Spector
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to another Friday edition of Lion Links! Typically, this is when I hop on the hype train and start to get you geared up for a match, but there are no games for Orlando this weekend. Should I hype you up for MLS playoff soccer or get you jazzed up for footy from around the world? I think today, because the lack of City playoff soccer still stings, I’ll just jump right into the juicy morsels we have found to share with you.

Spector has 1% of 2018 U.S. Soccer Vote

U.S. Soccer will be voting for many things next year, including a new USSF president. One of Orlando’s own has his name on the list of the Athlete Council, which could stand as a key bloc of votes for anyone wanting to be USSF president. You might want to follow Jonathan Spector’s social media now and prepare your statements on how you would vote if you were in his position.

Leitao Surprised by Larin’s Remarks

We all saw the Cyle Larin interview. It has been known that he would like to eventually play in Europe, but it was always with a “but not right now” attached because he is here and focused on playing in MLS. That interview was the first time it sounded like he is looking to leave now, and it sounds like it caught Orlando City CEO Alex Leitao a bit off guard. Leitao says there are no active discussions nor any current offers. Hopefully this is not the beginning of a soap opera starring our very own soccer club.

Who Will be the Next Two?

Outside of the drama of the 2017 season, we have all been witness to the race for the next two golden tickets to join MLS. This is something that either gets you really excited, or drives you to the edge of insanity. Conspiracy theories abound, money is flying around, and the rules seem to change each month. MLS Commissioner Don Garber may have slipped while discussing the future expansion of MLS recently. I won’t spoil it for you.

Detroit Makes a Case

Detroit’s bid is getting more and more serious. A tentative deal has been made for the property included in the expansion bid to be the site for a soccer-specific stadium. There are some big names helping to back the bid, including the Detroit Pistons owner and the founder of Quicken Loans. The Detroit bid group is hoping to host MLS representatives next month.

Crew Owner and Austin Go Way Back

#SavetheCrew is one of the hotly discussed stories in MLS right now, outside of the playoffs. The story gets deeper and deeper on a daily basis with every new piece of information. Now it appears that the move to Austin may have been the end game for far longer than anyone realizes. If this timeline is correct, Anthony Precourt may have been planning this gambit from day one.

Free Kicks:
  • A bunch of contributors and guests held a roundtable to discuss the future of U.S. Soccer, including our very own Kevin Mercer.
  • Dimitar Berbatov sat down for a great look into his time at some of Europe’s biggest soccer clubs.
  • Save the date. The 2018 NWSL College Draft date has been set!
  • Randomly, and seemingly out of nowhere, the Gregory Sertic rumors are floating around again, and Orlando City is mentioned.
  • On a serious note, this is a cause we should all be spearheading, but Grant Wahl just did what no one else in U.S. Soccer has done and opened the conversation in a very public venue.
  • On a not so serious note, instant karma is instant, especially when trying to steal from kids
  • Finally, can someone please explain this one to me?

That is all I have for you today. Hope you all have an amazing Friday and are enjoying this first cold front of the year. Oh, and I hope you are all ready for sugargeddon this Halloween. Be safe out there everyone, and hopefully your MLS playoff brackets aren’t already busted.