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Lion Links: 7/29/18

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Conversations with the Landlord and Yoshi, Alex Morgan closes on 100 international goals, NWSL game moved due to canceled flight, and more.

MLS: Toronto FC at Orlando City SC Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Happy match day, everyone. Orlando City will visit the LA Galaxy tonight at 9:30 p.m. ET in what will hopefully be an end to a seven-game road losing streak that should have ended last Saturday night in Columbus. The interference of a vengeful spirit prohibited that, but hopefully things will go better in California. The Lions have never won in that state but the suffering has to end some time and I don’t like to put these things off.

In other words, get dumped, Galaxy.

The USWNT is also in action tonight, with Alex Morgan and company squaring off with Australia — last year’s Tournament of Nations winner. The Yanks lost to the Matildas in this ToN fixture in 2017 and that allowed the Aussies to take the inaugural competition. The United States must improve upon an uneven performance in Thursday’s opener against Japan if the Stars & Stripes are to dethrone the defending champs.

We’ll have more coverage of Orlando City at LA and the U.S. vs. Australia throughout the day. So, let’s get to the links.

Yoshi Speaks on World Cup Experience, Orlando City

Orlando City midfielder Yoshimar Yotún spoke with The Inscriber Magazine’s Dean Perretta and discussed his experiences at the 2018 FIFA World Cup with Peru, playing under Ricardo Gareca, and how he likes playing his club soccer with Orlando City. He had some nice things to say about how his game days at home have been since joining the Lions.

It’s great, it’s a new and beautiful stadium that’s always packed. Most people only get to see the pitch and the stands, but the pre-game organization from entering into the locker room, to walking down through the tunnel is something incredible. These are beautiful moments that I am experiencing here in Orlando City and I would love to keep living these experiences that the Club has brought me.

Earl Talks About Finally Getting His Opportunity

There aren’t many original Lions left from the club’s inaugural MLS roster. Earl Edwards Jr. is one of only two — Cristian Higuita is the other — and he’s had a long wait to get his chance in MLS. Lately, James O’Connor has turned to the Landlord and he’s been able to come up big against the likes of Sebastian Giovinco and Maxi Moralez. Earl spoke with another former Orlando City goalkeeper, Miguel Gallardo, on a number of topics. My favorite bit was when he talks about his favorite part of playing goalkeeper, which is at odds with Miggy’s opinion on the subject. Enjoy the video below.

Alex Morgan Approaches 100-Goal Mark

Orlando Pride striker Alex Morgan scored her fourth career hat trick with the USWNT in Thursday’s 4-2 win over Japan. Morgan now sits on 89 career goals and is poised to become the third youngest player ever to reach 100 for the USWNT if she maintains her torrid pace. And she could do it in the fewest caps. Mia Hamm reached 100 goals at age 26 and Abby Wambach hit the mark just after turning 29. Just think where Morgan would be if not for some injury issues throughout her career.

Morgan has scored 16 times in her last 16 international matches and is third on the USWNT’s all-time list for braces, with 20. Only six players to date — Wambach, Hamm, Kristine Lilly, Michelle Akers, Tiffeny Milbrett and Carli Lloyd — have reached the century mark with the U.S. and only Wambach (37) and Hamm (28) have more braces. She is fourth on the USWNT’s all-time multi-goal game list, with 23, behind Wambach (45), Hamm (38), and Akers (25). The 29-year-old has been on fire for her country and if that continues, she will help propel the Yanks into the 2019 FIFA World Cup later this year.

Sky Blue at Chicago Red Stars Postponed Due to Flight Cancelation

This one seems like a new one to me. Saturday’s scheduled NWSL match between Sky Blue FC and the Chicago Red Stars had to be postponed due to the New Jersey club’s flight being canceled on Friday. The league announced that there were no available options to get Sky Blue there on time to adequately and safely prepare for the match. It was the lone game scheduled in the league during the ongoing Tournament of Nations and would have given winless Sky Blue an opportunity to face Chicago without Sam Kerr and Julie Ertz — although SBFC would also have been without Carli Lloyd. Sky Blue is 0-13-3 and trying to avoid a winless NWSL season. The match could also have an effect on the Red Stars’ playoff chase.

Free Kicks
  • Pride defender Toni Pressley had a near miss with a knife on Saturday morning while making breakfast. Thankfully, she only lost a bit of fingernail. Be safe out there, Toni!
  • The next time you complain about your team’s kit or shirt sponsor, just remember, at least they don’t look like weiners.
  • The All Abilities Soccer Camp in Georgia is doing good work by giving special needs children an opportunity to learn the game and have fun doing it.
  • The late Carrie Fisher will appear in Star Wars Episode IX via footage that was already shot for The Force Awakens. I’m sure it will get real dusty in the theater for Princess Leia’s last ride.
  • Those born on this date include REO Speedwagon keyboardist Neal Doughty (1946), actress Leslie Easterbrook (1949) from the Police Academy movies, documentary maker Ken Burns (1953), Rush bassist/vocalist Geddy Lee (1953), E Street Band member Patti Scialfa (1954), and actor and nerd hero Wil Wheaton (1972).

That’s all my time for today, folks. Please check back with The Mane Land throughout the day for full coverage of the USWNT and Orlando City matches.