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Lion Links: 1/1/18

Sutter is happy, LGBTQ Brazilian league, MLS in Nashville, and more!

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MLS: Orlando City SC at Philadelphia Union Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Merry Monday morning, Mane Landers, and welcome to the first Lion Links of 2018! Here we are at the start of the new year. A new beginning, a chance to start over with a new attitude, a bright outlook, and a bunch of new players! We’re in first place in MLS (along with all the other teams, but so what)! Despite all of those good thoughts, we still have a while until the season starts, so in the meantime we’ll provide some links for your enjoyment.

Scott Sutter Says It All

Since it’s the new year, let’s check in with one of Orlando City’s own on how he feels about the year that was 2017, and what he is looking forward to in 2018.

Rock on, Mr. Sutter. We’ll follow your lead.

Is the World Cup the Only Game in Town?

We’re all sick of hearing about the World Cup, which is totally happening this year. However, despite countries like Italy, the United States, and the Netherlands not participating, it is considered the biggest sporting event in the world. That could be changing, as the Gulf states start exerting their money and power. And since we live in Florida, let me clarify that I mean the Persian Gulf, not the states surrounding the Gulf of Mexico (I’m looking at you Alabama). Between sanctions, and foreign investors, the Gulf states are starting to assert their influence upon the soccer world.

A League of their Own

Brazil is a country steeped in soccer. It is as much a part of the identity of the country as apple pie is to America. Unfortunately, much of the soccer culture has not been tolerant of those in the LGBTQ community. There have been players like Douglas Braga, who after coming out didn’t play professionally for 10 years. That is until he found the LiGay League. The LiGay League is a LGBTQ-specific soccer league that gives those that were unable to play in Brazil’s other leagues a chance to ply their trade and enjoy the game they enjoy. Hopefully, the need for the LiGay League will pass, but until that time, it’s great that everyone can enjoy the beautiful game.

Bringing MLS to Nashville Has Its Perks

John Ingram is the man behind the effort to bring MLS to Nashville, and it has paid off. John has won Tennessean Sports person of the Year for 2017. Ingram wasn’t the only one responsible, of course, however, he was the lead person in the effort. As per usual, there was plenty of money behind the team and plenty of politics as well. Regardless, it will be interesting to see how things progress.

Free Kicks
  • Despite stories to the contrary, Cyle Larin is still a Lion, and was at the ECNL College Impact Series to support those in attendance.
  • There are plenty of American soccer players plying their trade abroad. Not all of them are in MLS or the NWSL, and we should still keep track of how they are doing.
  • If you haven’t heard enough about the state of U.S. Soccer, and are a glutton of punishment, then perhaps you should check out the discussion betweeen former MLS MVP Carlos Ruiz and former Toronto FC and D.C. United president Kevin Payne.
  • Jozy Altidore leads a list of American scorers that includes Dom Dwyer at No. 7. Good for Dom for making the list.

Well then everyone, that is going to do it for the very first Lion Links of 2018. I’m so happy you have decided to stick around and join us for the coming year and the coming season. We look forward to bringing the best of Orlando City soccer to you all year long.