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Lion Links: 8/15/17

Lions won’t challenge Kaká’s red, recognition for Joe Bendik and Marta, money a factor in Maddy Evans’ retirement, Cristiano Ronaldo suspended, and more.

MLS: Orlando City SC at New York Red Bulls Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Tuesday, Mane Land readers! We’re just a day away from seeing if Orlando City B can extend its unbeaten run to nine games as the Ottawa Fury are coming to OCS to take on the young Lions. It’s a double game week for Anthony Pulis’ side, as Saturday is another triple game day for the club.

Well, we can’t put off starting the day any longer, unless, of course, you waste some of your day with the following Lion Links.

Lions Opt Not to Appeal Kaká Red

Orlando City released a strong message of disagreement last night when it announced the club won’t be appealing Kaká’s sending off at New York Red Bulls (full statement here). The team’s statement supported the league’s referees and video review system but said the lack of appeal was “to avoid further unjustified consequences.” By pointing out it wanted to avoid “further unjustified consequences,” the club essentially said the initial punishment was unjustified by the referee.

MLS red card appeals to the league’s disciplinary committee can only be overturned by unanimous decision and can lead to further punishment if not overturned. Additionally, appeals are limited. Orlando used an appeal earlier this year to successfully get Rafael Ramos’ red card rescinded and the club is still entitled to up to two failed challenges. But, with video review being so new, it is unlikely the league would be willing to admit a mistake so soon and overturn the red. This statement, impotent though it may be in rectifying the situation, is as strong a response as the club could reasonably give, in my opinion.

Not a Recording: Bendik Up for Save of the Week

While three balls may have gotten past Joe Bendik on Saturday night in New Jersey, one of the ones that didn’t is up for MLS Save of the Week. Joe got down quickly to deny a Michael Murillo header off a corner kick, saving it off the line. Bendik’s competition is Sean Johnson, Jeff Attinella, Jake Gleeson, and Andrew Tarbell. I’m a little tired of consolation prizes this season, but if he’s up for it, we might as well vote for him to win. Hit the site and vote often, folks.

Marta Nominated for NWSL Goal of the Week

One of the eight goals from either the Orlando Pride’s 3-0 midweek win over Washington, or the club’s 5-0 drubbing of Sky Blue was bound to be nominated for NWSL Goal of the Week — and it was Marta’s opener against the Spirit. Personally, I would have thought Alex Morgan’s smashed half-volley off Steph Catley’s long ball would have been the one to get the nod, but Marta has surprisingly come up short this season in getting recognition when you consider all of the accomplishments of Megan Rapinoe, Sam Kerr, and Christen Press, so it’s good to see the Brazilian get her turn. Vote on Twitter at this here link.

Salary a Factor in Maddy Evans’ Retirement

Orlando Pride midfielder Maddy Evans said her $16,000 salary was a factor in her retirement from pro soccer to take a job in Pennsylvania.

“My decision wasn’t made on one or two things. It was made on a bunch of different things, but I’m 26, turning 27, and I make $16,000 a year,” she said. “… I think that obviously it’s gotten better every single year. … Unfortunately, it just didn’t stay kind of caught up with where I needed to be.”

Although salaries in the NWSL have risen, there is still a long way to go in order for most players to make a living on their league pay. The maximum NWSL salary, for players such as Marta, is still below MLS minimum level.

Ronaldo Gets Five-Match Ban

Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo has received a five-game suspension for shoving referee Ricardo De Burgos Bengoetxea after he was sent off in Sunday’s Spanish Super Cup. His sending off was easily preventable. Ronaldo was booked for taking off his shirt after scoring a goal. His second yellow was for diving. Being petulant after taking two stupid yellow cards is kind of par for the course for the Portuguese superstar. In fairness, he does get fouled a lot, but as a Manchester United fan he was frustrating for me to watch at times because he’d sometimes go down easily to get a call and completely waste a scoring chance to do it. As great as Ronaldo is as a player, he could be greater still.

Free Kicks
  • The Pride released backup goalkeeper Caroline Stanley in the wake of Ashlyn Harris’ return to full health.
  • Minnesota is giving away Adrian Heath garden gnomes with select ticket packages.
  • Among those born on this date are Napoleon (1769), White Sox founding owner Charles Comiskey (1859), chef Julia Child (1912), Mannix star Mike Connors (1925), former Manchester United and Tampa Bay Buccaneers owner Malcolm Glazer (1928), former Minnesota Twins manager Tom Kelly (1950), football’s Gary Kubiak (1961), Will & Grace actress Debra Messing (1968), Ben Affleck (1972), NASCAR’s Carl Edwards (1979), and Jennifer Lawrence (1990).

That’s it for me today. Have a great Tuesday and rest of the week.