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The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: The New Season, a Champions League Kerfuffle, and a TV Wasteland

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Orlando City’s new season, stupid people at a Champions League match, and how can I watch soccer?

MLS: Orlando City SC at New York Red Bulls Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome back, Mane Landers! We’re getting so close to the season, you can feel it when you’re driving to work, or cooking dinner. Before that happens though, we still have some stuff to talk about that isn’t the season. Nah, who am I kidding? We’re going to talk about that, but also some other stuff. Let’s get to it!

The Good

The new season is coming. I know that it might end up in any of these categories before too long, but for now it’s still a good thing. There are plenty of unanswered questions, and while that can be a recipe for an ulcer, I’m taking a healthier approach. I’ve decided that we’re not going to do very well this year. Basically, I’ve set my expectations pretty low given that it’s the first full season for James O’Connor, Dom Dwyer is working his way back from injury, we’ve replaced too many players to mention, and there are still glaring needs at certain positions (cough...attacking mid...cough). As such, if the team is able to show any kind of progress, I’ll take it! So bring the pain, Orlando City. I’m ready.

The Bad

Just once I’d like to not feel the need to write about unruly soccer fans. Supporters for Manchester United and PSG were a bigger story than the match between the two clubs. United was charged with fans throwing objects and blocking stairways. PSG was charged with destruction of property when their supporters set off flares in the away section of Old Trafford. Eight hundred seats were damaged! I get that the Champions League is important, and that fans are passionate, but nearly starting fires and throwing bottles at people? It’s just bad form, lads. This is where I usually say that it needs to stop and fans need to grow up, but I’m just not feeling it today. I’m too fed up with the lot of them.

The Ugly

This might only be a problem for those of us that live outside of the Orlando area, but watching the matches can occasionally be difficult. Obviously, those of you who live in the Orlando area are able to more easily get to matches in person, and assuming you have cable or a digital antenna, you can watch the matches on FOX35 and MY65. If you have cable you can also watch some of the matches on FOX Sports, as a full 30 out of the 34 matches will be broadcast on those channels. I, and others like me, need to subscribe to ESPN+ for those matches not nationally televised. But Dave, it’s only $4.99 per month, you say. True, and I shell out that $4.99 per month, but I also subscribe to SlingTV so I can have access to FOX Sports, and other channels.

MLS and Orlando City aren’t the only contributors to the piecemeal nature of watching soccer in the U.S. Want to watch South American leagues? Pay for a FUBOTv subscription. Want to watch the EPL? You’d better hope the match you want is on NBC that day, or you’ll need to pay for the Gold package. Have the Gold package, but want to watch Champions League matches? Good luck! Of course, there’s also Univision Deportes, YouTube, and

I’m not sure that there’s anything to be done about this, since I do want to watch as much soccer as possible. However, that doesn’t mean I have to like it. I just have to pay for it.

There you have it. Was I spot on? Do you think I’m crazy? Whining? Let me know in the comments below. Go City!