What’s up, Mane Landers? The weekend is almost upon us and we have lots of soccer on the menu. Tomorrow will be the first time in 2018 that both the Pride and Orlando City play on the same day, so make sure to get lots of rest today. But before you finish up your work week, enjoy some links on what’s going on in the soccer world!
Pride Select Replacement Players
As anyone who follows women’s soccer can tell you, 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup qualifying is underway. Orlando Pride players Marta, Monica, and Poliana will all be gone for the majority of April to help Brazil win the 2018 Copa América Femenina to qualify. To replace them in the coming weeks, the Orlando Pride have signed Abby Elinski, Christine Creighton, and Nàdia Gomes. Both Elinski and Gomes were a part of the 2018 NWSL College Draft class and all three acquisitions will give a nice injection of talent into the team along with recently signed UCF product Bridget Callahan.
Lamine Sané Excited for Orlando Home Debut
While the biggest storyline in Orlando City’s match against the New York Red Bulls tomorrow afternoon will be on midfielder Sacha Kljestan, defender Lamine Sané will be someone fans should keep their eyes on. Starting in place of the injured Jonathan Spector, Sané is excited to take the field with Orlando’s supporters at his back for the first time.
“I’m so excited to play Saturday,” Sané said. “For me, it’s my first game at home. [It’s been] a long time since I played 90 minutes in front of my supporters and I’m so excited.”
Sané will be starting as center back alongside Amro Tarek in what will hopefully be a winning pair for the Lions as they hunt their first win of the season.
New Pride Players Reflect on Playing First Home Game
The five new players who started for the Orlando Pride in their season-opening draw with Utah Royals FC got their first taste of playing in Orlando City Stadium. The Pride led the NWSL in attendance in the opening week after eclipsing 9,000 fans; no other team had attendance over 6,000. It was a nice welcome for the new players, and center back Shelina Zadorsky felt at home in her first Pride match.
“Yeah, it was special, for sure. Just walking through that tunnel, I just couldn’t stop smiling,” Zadorsky said after the match. “I had a huge smile on my face, whereas usually I’m pretty serious, I just get the straight face going, but I think it just feels like home to me. I think that the vibes here and the energy and the professionalism of this club really sets the standard for our league. I was just so pumped to get out there and play with these girls.”
Orlando City Partners With Challenger Sports
This summer, expect youth soccer camps to be coming to Central Florida after Orlando City announced a partnership with Challenger Sports. A total of nine camps will be held from June 5 to Aug. 10 in camps open to both boys and girls, aged 5 to 16. New to this year’s camps will be an app where participants can try skill challenges at home and receive personalized coaching straight from their phone.
Orlando’s U-17 Team Falls to Tigres in GA Cup
In the Generation Adidas Cup in Austin, TX, Orlando City’s U-17 squad lost 3-0 to Tigres yesterday. It was a disappointing outing for the young Lions but hopefully they can pull together and come back strong in their final game of the GA Cup against the Columbus Crew U-17s.
Orlando’s Favorite Couple Plays the Newlywed Game
Dom Dwyer and Sydney Leroux sat down with Fox reporter Adam Shadoff to test their compatibility in a rendition of the newlywed game. What’s Dwyer’s favorite color? What food is Leroux’s? Who has better style? Check out the video below for all the answers and much more.
.@ORLPride star @sydneyleroux and @OrlandoCitySC star @Ddwyer14 have been married since 2015.— Adam Shadoff (@FOX35Adam) March 28, 2018
But I got them both to play the "Newlywed Game" with me. And let's just say they both did pretty well.#Fox35 pic.twitter.com/S1Ap3eUi8S
- The greatest way for a club to express itself, is through its jerseys. But is MLS’s deal with Adidas smothering creativity from its clubs?
- Orlando City may catch a break tomorrow as it takes on a New York Red Bulls team that is sandwiched between MLS games and the CONCACAF Champion’s League. So how are the Red Bulls and Toronto FC handling the tough situation?
- Speaking of Toronto, check out how Real Salt Lake played a part into making the Canadian club into the MLS power it is today. Bonus: it contains a cool anecdote about Jason Kreis’ forcus.
- Colombian midfielder Darwin Quintero is set to become Minnesota United’s first Designated Player.
- The United States was the only nation to have two referees selected for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, with both Mark Geiger and Jair Marrufo making the cut. Marrufo is scheduled to call Orlando City’s game tomorrow.
- If you’re a student of the game, you should take a look at this article featuring renowned soccer expert David Goldblatt and his thoughts on the state of soccer and the U.S.’s chances to host the 2026 FIFA World Cup.
- Carlos Tevez picked up a calf injury in a prison match while visiting his imprisoned half-brother.
- You may remember when PAOK Thessaloniki owner Ivan Savvidis sprinted onto the pitch with a gun, albeit holstered. Yeah, well he’s now been banned for three years and fined 100,000 euros.
- The NCAA may finally be getting with the times with some possible new soccer changes like a clock that doesn’t count down and the removal of the buzzer at the end of each half. I mean I’ll miss the oh so rare soccer buzzer beater but I think I can get over it for a clock that makes sense.
- Finally, we end our links with an in-depth look at what makes internet trolls tick. The amount of anonymity that comes from the internet plays a role into why some people can be beyond vile, but there’s more that goes into it. Thankfully, I’ve never seen any of that vitriol here in The Mane Land and most discussions have always been civil. I’m glad to have you guys as readers. Now go out and conquer your Friday!