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Lion Links: 3/29/18

Orlando City owner sells small stake, Kljestan wants victory over former team, MASL adds Orlando squad, and more.

MLS: Portland Timbers at Orlando City SC Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

Hello, Mane Landers. We are just two days away from the first day in which Orlando City and the Orlando Pride play on the same day. The Pride take on the Washington Spirit on the road, while Orlando City hosts the New York Red Bulls.

Meanwhile, due to Jonathan Spector’s injury, Lamine Sané appears to be very excited about his first potential start with Orlando City:

Lets get to the Links!

Albert Friedberg Acquires Stake in Orlando City

Orlando City owner Flavio Augusto da Silva sold an 8.63 percent stake to Albert Friedberg of the FCMI group. The investment, based on Orlando City’s enterprise value of $490.53 million, will add up to roughly $42.33 million for Friedberg.

Friedberg seemed very excited in his interview with ESPN FC.

“And I am extremely gratified to have partnered with Flavio, whose vision and integrity are legendary, and with his very competent team. Under their able direction, Orlando City SC will be certain to share in the explosive growth that I see ahead for soccer in the US.”

Interesting to note as well, Friedberg was a minority shareholder from 1994 to 1999 with Scottish champion side Celtic. Maybe his history will follow suit in Orlando.

Sacha Kljestan Wants to Defeat Red Bulls Badly

As most Orlando City fans know, Sacha Kljestan will face his former team this Saturday as New York Red Bulls come to Orlando City Stadium, bringing former Lions Carlos Rivas and Tommy Redding with them. Kljestan wants this win badly, which would be Orlando City’s first win of the season and, to top it off, against his former team. Kljestan was notable for New York, leading MLS in assists for the past two seasons before being traded to Orlando this past off-season. He also helped lead New York to the playoffs for the three seasons he was there, so victory over a consistent playoff team could help Kljestan and Orlando City as a whole.

Orlando will be facing a hot New York Red Bulls team, which has won two of three in MLS play. The win would also be a statement win for Orlando City, which is looking to recover from an early season hole.

Central Florida Adds Team to MASL

The Major Arena Soccer League made year-round soccer a reality with the addition of a new arena soccer team in Orlando. This news comes with lots of optimism. Chris Kokalis will serve as general manager and the team will play in Sliver Spurs Arena in Kissimmee. The new team will be a part of the 2018-2019 alignment for the league, and will play 12 home games. Fans of the new team can go on their temporary website,, and vote for the team’s name and branding. So, Orlando will now have MLS, NWSL, and MASL teams featured year-round in the city.

Timothy Weah Satisfied with USMNT Debut

Although he did not get much playing time, roughly nine minutes due to added time, young American superstar Timothy Weah was impressed with himself:

“I played nine minutes and you can only do so much in nine minutes. I almost got my assist, unfortunately Andrija didn’t score. Overall, the main goal was to get the win and was to play for my team. Coming out here and making my debut in front of such amazing fans was a blessing and I just can’t wait to play more games and get more goals and assists. Part of the process, of course.”

Weah is best known for playing in Ligue 1 with Paris-Saint German, but his debut once again gave American soccer fans something to look forward to in the near future.

Weah almost had his first international assist to Andrija Novakovich, but his debut was nevertheless solid, proving yet another US star is in the making.

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Hope you all have a wonderful Thursday! Go enjoy some baseball before this weekend!