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Lion Links: 8/30/18

Clint Dempsey retires, Kristen Edmonds on the Pride’s inconsistency, Orlando City training updates, and more.

Dan MacDonald, The Mane Land

Hey, Mane Landers. I hope you all are enjoying the second-to-last day of August and prepping to have loads of fun on Labor Day weekend. MLS, college football, the final week of the NFL preseason are all upon us. As usual, there is lots of news today so let’s get right into it.

Clint Dempsey Retires From Professional Soccer

Seattle Sounders and USMNT star Clint Dempsey announced his retirement from professional soccer on Wednesday. The legendary USMNT forward retires as the co-leader with Landon Donovan in goals scored for the U.S., with 57. In Dempsey’s 141 national team appearances, he also tallied 21 assists. Dempsey played his first match in a USMNT kit against Jamaica on Nov. 17, 2004, and was selected by the New England Revolution that same year in the MLS SuperDraft.

“Deuce” took part in three World Cups for the United States, becoming one of the country’s biggest stars. After playing overseas with Fulham and Tottenham, Dempsey came back to MLS and brought the Seattle Sounders to the top in 2014. Dempsey had one of the most illustrious careers of any American soccer player and I am sure many will tip their cap to a true legend in the sport of soccer.

Kristen Edmonds Speaks On Missing the NWSL Playoffs

Kristen Edmonds had one of the more interesting seasons with Orlando Pride this season, being deployed in several different spots on the pitch. Edmonds and her teammates aren’t going to the postseason and she said inconsistency ruined the season as a whole for the Pride.

“I am kind of used to being all over the place. At times it gets frustrating because we never found our stride. I never really knew what to do or expect, playing in certain positions at times. But I think it comes down to as a collective team, we never got going this season. Individually and as a team, it’s kind of the same frustration.”

Edmonds was clearly upset when she was subbed off in the 3-1 loss to the Chicago Red Stars as she sat on the bench by herself. Despite missing the postseason, the Pride still have one more match against Sky Blue FC as the ladies will look to finish the season on somewhat of a high note.

Orlando City Training Updates

As Orlando City prepares for the match this Saturday against the Philadelphia Union, we continue to monitor personnel updates. Head coach James O’Connor said that Cristian Higuita is dealing with an adductor problem — something he’s dealt with earlier this season — and is considered day-to-day.

Sacha Kljestan participated in warm-ups with the squad as he continues to try to return from an ankle injury that has kept him out of action since Aug. 4.

Rachel Hill Scores for U-23s in 2-0 Win Over Sweden

The U-23 USWNT picked up a 2-0 victory against Sweden in the Four Nations Tournament in Norway on Wednesday. Orlando Pride forward Rachel Hill picked up the first goal of the match in the 43rd minute, while Sky Blue FC’s Imani Dorsey extended the lead in the 80th minute. The 23-year-old Hill is the lone Pride player on the roster. She will try and help lead the ladies to victory on Friday against England and again Sept. 3 against host Norway.

Free Kicks
  • Alejandro Bedoya will visit Orlando City Stadium on Saturday. The USMNT midfielder has had a good season for the Philadelphia Union, leading to him being a natural fit in Eastern Pennsylvania.
  • Chicharito and Carlos Vela are out of upcoming matches for Mexico with Herving Lozano inserted into the lineup.
  • Benfica, PSV, and Red Star reach the Champions League group stage.
  • MLS to “Go Gold” in September for the fifth annual Kick Childhood Cancer campaign.
  • And finally, former Orlando City striker Hadji Barry is tearing up the USL this season for the Swope Park Rangers. Barry scored his 12th goal of the season last night — the game winner in a 2-1 victory over Tulsa — to land among the top 10 USL goal-scoring leaders this season. Congrats to Hadji!

Have a great Thursday, everyone.