Good morning, readers of The Mane Land. I hope your weekend is going well. In fact, I hope your off-season is going well.
I’m catching up on TV shows and it’s going well. I’ve already binged my way through Stranger Things 2, Mindhunter, American Vandal, and Nathan for You. I’m considering giving Shameless a shot next, but I’m still weighing my options while I rewatch Game of Thrones from the beginning. Seriously, is it March yet?
Here, have some Sunday links.
Time’s Running Out to Vote for Joe
You’re running out of time to vote for MLS Save of the Year and Joe Bendik is in the running twice. Joe’s incredible stop at Montreal and his hustle stop at home against D.C. United are both up for the award. Voting ends Monday night at midnight Pacific time, so get on over to the MLS site and support Joe for his excellence this season.
Orlando City Included in Top Five MLS Controversies of 2017
The folks over at MLSSoccer.com posted the league’s five top controversies of 2017 in their “Best of MLS” series and, as you would imagine, Orlando City’s name came up. Specifically, the controversy surrounded the Lions’ 0-0 home draw vs. FC Dallas when the visitors decided to play ineligible player Michael Barrios and the league subsequently did the wrong thing in not ordering the game be forfeited. Other controversies included the scuffle in Toronto between the Red Bulls and Toronto FC in the playoffs, Mike Petke’s “Pass these out, Trey!” tirade when the dang printer broke, and more.
Yoshimar Yotun’s World Cup Comes Down to Wednesday
It all comes down to one game for Yoshi Yotun and his Peruvian teammates after his country drew 0-0 at New Zealand late Friday night. Yotun and his teammates forced some good saves from Stefan Marinovic but couldn’t find the net. Yoshi got booked in the game. Peru comes home to play without a road goal but it’s gonna be lit in Lima on Wednesday when the All Whites come to play with a World Cup berth on the line. The game will take place at 9:15 p.m. ET.
USSF Presidential Candidates Debate the Issues
If you’ve got a couple hours to kill and want to know where the majority of the USSF presidential candidates stand on several issues, GotSoccer put together a little debate for that, which took place yesterday. Not all of the candidates were present, but five of the prominent ones were, including Steve Gans, Eric Wynalda, Paul Caligiuri, Paul LaPointe, and Mike Winograd. Some definitely impressed me less than others but I’ll leave it up to you
Kyle Martino Weighs In Separately
USSF presidential candidate and NBC broadcaster Kyle Martino couldn’t make yesterday’s debate but he did take part in an interview by Got Soccer. Martino said his platform features three main attributes: transparency, equality, and progress. Among the things I found most interesting were his thoughts on the USWNT.
“Our women,” Martino began, “are World Cup winners, world-class athletes, they’re soccer players, and the fact that they are treated as second-class citizens is abhorrent.”
Furthermore, Martino said that current and former national team players he has spoken to feel that “their success is being used to paper over cracks, when in reality they feel that they are regressing, they feel that other teams are gaining on them, other countries are spending time and resources in ways we aren’t to improve coaching at youth level all the way up to the national team level, and we keep pointing to Olympic Gold Medals and World Cup trophies as examples that everything is going fine, everything is good.”
- FourFourTwo finished its countdown of the top 100 teenage players in the world and Christian Pulisic came in at No. 4. Their top pick is 18-year-old Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnagumma.
- ESPN’s Jeff Carlisle discusses MLS expansion longshots and those in the hunt.
- Among those born on this date were noted psychopath Charles Manson (1934), The Princess Bride actor Wallace Shawn (1943), sportscaster Al Michaels (1944), Neil Young (1945), Megan Mulally (1958), decorated Romanian Olympic gold medal-winning gymnast Nadia Comăneci (1961), baseball’s Sammy Sosa (1968), former U.S. figure skater Tonya Harding (1970), Ryan Gosling (1980), Anne Hathaway (1982), and basketball’s Russell Westbrook (1988).
That’s all my time for this morning. Enjoy what’s left of your weekend!