How’s it going, Mane Landers? I don’t know about you, but I sure am glad that it’s Friday and we can start to say farewell to this week. Unfortunately, this weekend will also have us saying goodbye to Orlando City and Orlando City B soccer for a while as both teams finish out the season in the next few days. But for now, let’s get the day started off right with some links from around the soccer world.
Orlando City Ready for Fire
With only one game left in the season and the playoffs officially out of reach, the Lions will take on the Chicago Fire at home on Sunday at 4 p.m. ET. While there isn’t anything worth playing for other than some conference position jockeying (the Lions could jump to eighth in the standings with the right results), it will be nice to have all three Designated Players on the field together while the offense shows how exciting 2020 could look. Nani will finish as the first Lion to lead the team in goals and assists in a season and rookie forward Benji Michel is doing well alongside the bigger names.
Nani Gets Cooking
I’m not sure why a chef challenged Nani to cook gourmet dishes in his restaurant, but I’m not complaining. The 32-year-old stopped by his favorite restaurant, Terra Mia in Lake Mary, FL to cook up some nice food and learn a thing or two from the restaurant’s chef. It’s a fun video and it’s always nice to see the players enjoying their hobbies outside of the soccer environment. Make sure to eat something before watching or else you will get real hungry, real quick.
Pride Hosting Spirit at Home
Tomorrow in Exploria Stadium, the Orlando Pride will welcome the Washington Spirit for their penultimate match of 2019. Like Orlando City’s game, there isn’t much to play for between these two teams as both are eliminated from the playoffs. However, the Pride do have a small chance to get out of last place if they win both of their last games, so hopefully they can get the job done. The team will be without Ali Krieger, Ashlyn Harris, Marta, Alanna Kennedy, and Shelina Zadorsky as they will be on international duty. So expect some of the youngsters to fill in and maybe we will see more of Sydney Leroux after her return to the field last week. For her part, Leroux hopes so and is excited to get back to match fitness.
USWNT Shuts Out Korea Republic
As part of its Victory Tour, the United States Women’s National Team faced Korea Republic last night and won 2-0. Pride goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris got the rare start in goal and led the team to a solid shutout with goals from Allie Long and Mallory Pugh lifting the Americans. Pride defender Ali Krieger didn’t play in the game but was honored at halftime to celebrate her 100th cap for her country.
The USWNT made sure that Krieger’s dad could be there to celebrate her accomplishments with the team.
The @USWNT organized transportation for my dad to make it to @alikrieger 100 cap celebration tonight! Still recovering, but he’s earnest in his effort to support Ali!! Can’t wait to see our fave! pic.twitter.com/g60blNhgj2— Kyle Krieger (@kylekrieger) October 3, 2019
- Check out Lamine Sané’s training routine for nailing key passes with Jenny Chiu playing the role of Ruan.
- With 14 goals and 15 assists for the Orlando SeaWolves last season, Thiago Freitas is someone to keep an eye on when the Major Arena Soccer League season begins next month.
- Orlando City B defender Matheus Silva was signed by Miami FC of the National Independent Soccer Association. Silva will be missed on the OCB back line after starting in 18 matches this year.
- Rumors are surfacing that Liga MX club Monterrey is willing to pay a hefty release clause to snag Matias Almeyda away from the San Jose Earthquakes. However, San Jose released a statement stating that there is no release clause and that the two clubs have not been in contact.
- Here is a fantastic rundown on the upcoming MLS Collective Bargaining Agreement negotiations. Between charter flights and an additional DP slot, there is going to be plenty worth discussing.
- As Jill Ellis closes out her time with the USWNT, make sure to check out this great feature on her head coaching philosophy and the obstacles she’s had to overcome.
- In USL League One news, North Texas SC will move to Globe Life Park for the 2020 season and Union Omaha unveiled its new branding as it prepares to join the league.
That’s going to do it for me, folks. I hope each and every one of you have a fantastic Friday and enjoy your weekend. After watching Nani cook, I think I’m going to take a crack at a few recipes I’ve been wanting to try. Vamos Orlando!