Good morning Mane Landers! It’s great to go into the weekend with three points already in pocket. The Lions decided not to leave the goals until late in the game and, hey, it all worked out. It’s nice to see the team winning and it’s even nicer when those wins lead to people making really cool things on the internet like this:
Now for some links.
Lions Win Third Straight Match
Dom Dwyer and Chris Mueller scored the goals and Joe Bendik did Joe Bendik things to keep his first clean sheet since last year. Orlando City took down the Union, 2-0, and improved to 2-0-0 in Friday the 13th games. Road points are precious and so getting three of them at once is always a good thing, especially against the kinds of teams you’re battling against to make the playoffs. We’ve got you covered if you missed the match.
- Michael Citro has your match recap.
- Alek Pierce handed out player grades and Man of the Match.
- The view from the other side comes to us from Brotherly Game.
And don’t miss Sean Rollins’ five takeaways later this morning. By the way, credit where it’s due. Big thanks to the Philadelphia Union and Sons of Ben for this:
Pride Players Heading to the World Cup
Australia and Japan played to a 1-1 draw yesterday. The result means that Pride players Alanna Kennedy and Emily van Egmond, as well as former Pride players Steph Catley, Laura Alleway, and Lisa De Vanna will be going to France for the 2019 Women’s World Cup. Japan led the game by a goal until none other than Sam Kerr tied the game at one for the Matildas in the 86th minute. Van Egmond was part of the buildup to Kerr’s equalizer. The goal avoided an embarrassing situation for the Matildas, who would have had to battle in a winner-take-all game to qualify.
Sam Kerr Scores Goal to level score at 1-1, Video courtesy of: TV Asahi, AFC Women’s Asian Cup 2018 #womensfootball #WSUlive #soccer #football #WAC2018 #Jordan2018 #GoMatildas #Nadeshiko #JPNvAUS pic.twitter.com/76WZ8AUgGK— WomensSoccerUnited (@WSUasa) April 13, 2018
This is Japan’s eighth World Cup in a row and the country will look to make it to the finals for the third time in a row. Meanwhile, Australia is heading to its seventh World Cup in a row, and will hope to finally make it past the quarter finals. Korea Republic also played yesterday and beat down on Vietnam, 4-0.
While this is obviously great news for Japan and Australia, Orlando will certainly miss Kennedy and van Egmond. There are a total of 11 players from both teams that play in the NWSL.
Alex Morgan: “It’s Coming Together”
The Orlando Pride go up against the defending NWSL champions on Sunday and have to quickly get back into the groove of things. International breaks have disrupted training, as 10 players were out last week and five players are still missing — Alanna Kennedy, Marta, Monica, Poliana, and Emily van Egmond.
“It’s been pretty difficult, honestly, to get a good fluidity within the team,” Morgan said. “And just knowing that we’re going to get the Brazilians and Australians back soon but not soon enough, it’s really difficult because I feel like again this year we’re going to be playing a little bit of catch-up just with those first few games not really getting the results we wanted.
Even with all the players out, the team is coming together and slowly getting towards how Tom Sermanni wants the team to look. The Pride are looking to get their first win of the season this weekend. It might help out some, too, that the Thorns are without four players from international duty and another four due to injury, including Tobin Heath.
USMNT vs. Italy Announced
The United States Men’s National Team is set to play a friendly against the Italians on Nov. 20. The venue for the game has not been announced yet but it will most likely be on neutral ground. Both the Yanks and the Azzurri are in similar circumstances. After missing the World Cup, both countries parted ways with their head coaches and presidents. There is change in the air for both as well.
The U.S., which now ranks 24th in the world, has not announced when it will be hiring a new coach, but officials say it will happen after the World Cup. This could potentially mean that the Yanks think a coach that is currently coaching a team in the World Cup will replace Bruce Arena and take the reigns from interim coach Dave Sarachan. As for Italy, Carlo Ancelotti, Roberto Mancini, and Antonio Conte are in the running to become the new coach next month.
- Marta and Monica started on the bench and Poliana got the start. Brazil thumped Bolivia, 7-0 in Copa America Femenina action on Friday.
- NWSL pay is awful and many players have to work multiple jobs. Here’s what Laura Harvey and the Utah Royals are doing to try to change that.
- D.C. United hosts the Columbus Crew this weekend and the venue is a little different than what is typical. They will play at the home field of Navy soccer, Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.
- Usain Bolt on trial with Dortmund... again.
- Mohamed Salah became the first player in Premier League history to win three Player of the Month awards in the same season.
- The Champions League semifinals are set. Bayern Munich will play Real Madrid and Liverpool are up against Roma.
- FC Cincinnati’s bid to become an MLS expansion team could take a vital step in making it a reality but the vote to approve a stadium might not pass.
- And it might be safe to say this is the strangest public appearance that Kay Rawlins will make this year: