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Lion Links: 3/14/19

Jansson’s journey, a Pride engagement, an OCSC Pub sub, broken contracts, Colombian women are pros, and more.

Dan MacDonald, The Mane Land

Good morning, Mane Landers! Your regularly scheduled Links writer has been temporarily replaced, but not to worry, all will be well. As listeners of The Mane Land PawedCast know, I’m a Liverpool supporter, and the Reds just beat Bayern Munich, 3-1 as I write this. So, I’m in a good mood, and almost everything in today’s Links reflects that mood. Let’s get to it.

Orlando City’s Swedish Defender Arrives

As Orlando City announced Tuesday, Swedish defender Robin Jansson has joined the Lions. The 27-year-old’s journey is quite the interesting one. Let’s just say that there’s a horseshoe factory and a title-winning goal involved. It’s quite the story of a hopeful late bloomer that is making good on his professional soccer dreams. Suffice it to say Jansson is very happy to be in Orlando, and James O’Connor is glad to have another experienced center back. Though, coming from Sweden, Jansson may need to acclimate to the weather in Orlando.

Pride’s Krieger, Harris Announce Engagement

When I write Lion Links there is usually plenty of material, or very little. It is rare when I get a story that is both Orlando soccer related, and heartwarming at the same time. Fortunately, Ali Krieger and Ashlyn Harris did that very thing when they announced their engagement to People. The couple has been together for about a decade, though for most of that not publicly. I’m not saying that their chemistry as keeper and defender is better for the relationship, but I’m also not saying it isn’t. Obviously the couple are professionals, and didn’t want the relationship to affect their club. However, I’m fairly certain that the rest of the team will be very happy for them. Congratulations from all of us here at The Mane Land.

Orlando City Announces Partnership Deals, Pub Sub

The Orlando City front office announced new and renewed partnerships with numerous companies in the Orlando area, including Moe’s Southwest Grill and Visit St. Pete-Clearwater. Of course the big news was that not only would Publix continue as a partner, but the supermarket chain has announced an Orlando City-specific Pub sub. The new sub will have chicken tenders, cheddar cheese, mayo, black bean hummus, lettuce and tomato. It will debut at 126 participating locations today from 4 to 7 p.m. Unfortunately for me, Tallahassee is not participating.

USMNT’s MLS Forwards

Later on today you can read a little more from me regarding the USMNT call-ups, but for now let’s focus on the forwards that will be in camp for the friendlies against Ecuador and Chile. Gregg Berhalter went all in on MLS forwards this time around, calling up Paul Arriola, Corey Baird, Jonathan Lewis, Jordan Morris, Christian Ramirez, and Gyasi Zardes. Hopefully we’ll get to see a little of all of them since this is the last camp before picking the squad for the Concacaf Gold Cup. Anyone else wish that Dom Dwyer got the call instead of Zardes? Yeah, me too.

Colombian Women Win

The Colombian women’s soccer league will retain its professional status. Only a week ago there was the very real possibility that the league would be relegated to amateur status. Now, thanks to the players and local media pressuring officials, the league will remain a professional one. This is great news coming in a Women’s World Cup year, and for not just the women of Colombia, but for all who support the women’s game. Recently, there was a lot of attention on the Colombian Women’s National Team due to sexual harassment complaints against coaches. The league maintaining its professional status is certainly good news following that scandal.

Soccer on TV is a Big Deal

This is the only non-positive link today. The Asian Football Confederation has pulled out of its broadcast contract with Qatar-based beIN Media Group so that it can broadcast matches in Saudi Arabia. BeIN is currently banned in Saudi Arabia. Incidentally, Saudi officials have allowed one of the most sophisticated piracy operations in history to steal billions of dollars of soccer related content from beIN Media. Needless to say, beIN will be suing the AFC over the breach of contract, which ran through 2020.

Free Kicks
  • Check out Nani’s YouTube channel, highlighting work he did with local children before coming to Orlando.
  • Orlando SeaWolves defender Richard Schmermund made the MASL Team of the Week for a three-goal, one-assist performance against the Kansas City Comets. Well done, sir!

That’ll do it for this morning, but stop back by this afternoon for my weekly feature. Go City!