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Lion Links: 11/4/17

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Purple Deadpool to be honored, OCSC academy player will suit up for Puerto Rico, no Ronaldo vs. USMNT, and more.

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

Happy match day, Lion folk. Tonight Orlando City takes on Puerto Rico in friendly action at Orlando City Stadium for a great cause — to raise funds for the island nation’s recovery from getting rocked by not one but two hurricanes this season. It’s also your last chance to see Kaká in Orlando City colors, so go on out to the purple palace tonight and have a look. (If you can’t make it, our Scott Carnevale will be on hand to live tweet the match and write up a recap afterwards.)

It’s a crazy time right now. Some of the teams in our league are still playing but we’ve been in off-season mode for a couple weeks now. We should start hearing soon about some contract statuses for Orlando City players but for now we know that Leo Pereira has returned to Brazil following the conclusion of his loan to the Lions. Pereira is a young guy with good feet and some upside, and — even if he didn’t set the world on fire with Orlando City — his loan to OCSC was a positive step in the partnership between the club and Atletico Paranaense.

OK, with that said, let’s get to some Lion Links.

Purple Deadpool Will Be Honored Tonight

Joseph Campo Jr. (a.k.a. “Purple Deadpool”) was taken from this Earth far too young — at just 31 years of age when he was killed in a traffic accident on Tuesday while driving on John Young Parkway, headed for work. In those 31 too-brief years, Campo endeared himself to his friends, his supporters’ group, and his community. All of that came out in this story by Orlando Sentinel writer Alicia DelGallo. But it was summarized nicely by someone who knew him best — Campo’s girlfriend Corinne Battersby.

“He can make anybody laugh, regardless of circumstance,” Battersby said. “He’s giving. People would call at 2 o’clock in the morning; he’d go fix their car. There’s just so much good that I can say about him, and it would never be enough.”

Campo will be honored by the club and The Ruckus at tonight’s friendly at Orlando City Stadium. We send our deepest condolences to Campo’s friends and family and the entire OCSC supporters’ group community.

OCSC Academy Player to Face His Club

Puerto Rico will get a boost from Alejandro Colon from the Orlando City Development Academy in tonight’s game.

The academy product said it will be strange to go up against his club but is looking forward to representing what he calls “my little island.”

No Ronaldo vs. the USMNT?

Portugal manager Fernando Santos has named his squad for two upcoming friendlies — including the Nov. 14 clash with the USMNT — and Cristiano Ronaldo’s name isn’t on it. The strikers listed for Portugal for those games include André Silva (Milan), Bruma (RB Leipzig), Éder (Lokomotiv), Gelson Martins (Sporting), Gonçalo Guedes (Valencia), and Rony Lopes (Monaco). Portugal will be the first team the U.S. will face since being eliminated from 2018 World Cup contention and the resignation of Bruce Arena.

Will Franch Get a Look in Upcoming USWNT Friendlies?

Sure, we know who you guys would like to see between the sticks for the USWNT. But Jill Ellis has made it clear she feels that Ashlyn Harris is the No. 2 behind Alyssa Naeher, at least for the time being. In the meantime, the backstop of the NWSL’s stingiest defense has been on the outside looking in. But she may be closing the gap. Adrianna Franch got the call-up for the November friendlies against Canada and it would be a good test to see if the Portland goalkeeper has what it takes to become the next great U.S. stopper.

Could Global Nations League Replace International Friendlies?

We could see new worldwide international competitions in odd-numbered years if plans for the ‘Global Nations League’ get off the ground.

The UEFA-led Global Nations League could replace many often-meaningless friendly matches, officials briefed on the project told The Associated Press.

The plan would invite all 223 members of FIFA's six continental confederations and take place every two years. The format expands on the UEFA Nations League, which kicks off next September in Europe.

Free Kicks
  • Anthony Precourt’s minion made my skin crawl with some of the things he said to Austin, TX, soccer supporters. Despite a recent lucrative jersey sponsorship deal with Acura and a stadium naming partner in Mapfre, Dave Greeley said the Columbus Crew lack sponsorship support. It’s clear that Precourt and his posse have no intention to #SaveTheCrew.
  • Detroit’s new plan to use Ford Field certainly changes things in the city’s bid to gain an MLS expansion franchise. MLS, of course, responded by reiterating that soccer-specific stadiums will be prioritized, which is probably amusingly adorbs news to fans of New York City FC and Atlanta United.
  • Paul Caligiuri has thrown his hat into the ring and will run for USSF president.
  • Here’s an interesting piece on a tattoo artist who has inked plenty of athletes, rock stars, and celebrities, including the likes of Tally Hall and Seb Hines.
  • Among those born on this date are “Oklahoma’s favorite son” Will Rogers (1879), Walter Cronkite (1916), Art Carney (1918), Everybody Loves Raymond actress Doris Roberts (1925), M*A*S*H actress Loretta Swit (1937), “Modern Day Delilah” singer Van Stephenson (1953), Dream Theater keyboardist Jordan Rudess (1956), Karate Kid actor Ralph Macchio (1961), Survivor host Jeff Probst (1961), Sean Puff Daddy, Puffy, P. Diddy, Diddy (or whatever he’s calling himself these days) Combs (1969), Matthew McConaughey (1969), Portuguese soccer legend Luis Figo (1972), football’s Vince Wilfork (1981), and hockey’s Dustin Brown (1984).

That’s all the time I have for you this morning. Stay tuned for complete coverage of tonight’s friendly and enjoy your weekend.