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Lion Links: 6/15/19

MLS All-Star kit leaked, the Pride head to Houston, Concacaf Gold Cup info, and more.

Michael Chow-USA TODAY Sports

Hey everybody, and a happy Father’s Day Eve to all of the dads out there! The men of Orlando City are still on a break from Major League Soccer play, though the team will host the New England Revolution in a Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup match on Wednesday, June 19.

Plus, there’s still plenty of Orlando soccer to enjoy today as Orlando City B travels to play Tormenta FC tonight at 8 p.m. ET. The Orlando Pride will also be in action this evening against the Houston Dash at BBVA Stadium with an 8:30 p.m. start time. I’ve got updates about that match plus more news, including a ton of information about this little tournament called the FIFA Women’s World Cup.

MLS All-Star Game Jerseys Leaked

The folks over at Footy Headlines have leaked this year’s MLS All-Star jersey for the game next month at Exploria Stadium. Don’t let the Target bullseye logo fool you, this jersey has Orlando City written all over it with the iconic Lions purple and 407 printed on the upper back of the shirt. White dots in the form of stars and maple leaves add some life to the jersey with white stripes on the shoulder and a classy golden globe above the hem on the front.

Pride Ready for the Dash as Teammates Compete in World Cup

The ladies in purple had a training session here at home on Friday before heading out to Houston for the match later today. Toni Pressley knows that the Orlando Pride need to “go in and execute,” while defender Carson Pickett seems ready to get back on the pitch. Billboards showing support for Pride star Alex Morgan’s World Cup run with the United States Women’s National Team popped up along the 408. Morgan also debuted her new ESPN+ show The Equalizer, in which she shares her story about her “own unique journey in order to reach [the World Cup].”

Meanwhile in France, new Pride signing Claire Emslie started on the bench but did make a second half appearance for Scotland (0-2-0) in the nation’s 2-1 loss to Japan (1-0-1). After scoring her record-setting 16th World Cup goal for Brazil in Thursday’s defeat to Australia, the Pride’s legendary Marta made sure to point out a gender equality symbol on her boots.

Is Sexism to Blame for USWNT Goal Celebrations Backlash?

Ironically, the anecdote about Marta’s boots leads me to this story, one I felt deserved its own section of today’s Lion Links. If you’ve been following the 2019 Women’s World Cup at all, or even any non-WWC sports news, you have most likely heard about the USWNT routing Thailand 13-0 in the first match for both squads. The problem is that it hasn’t been a lot of good news with many media outlets, journalists, and pundits criticizing the team for the scoring and celebrating, with some going so far as personally attacking players.

If you’re someone such as myself and believe those women have worked and fought hard to be on the world’s stage and deserve the right to celebrate any goal scored, an argument has been made linking the condemnation of the USWNT actions to sexism. In this must-read article (check it out and feel free to discuss it in the comments), the author points out the following:

“The backlash to the final score — and the lopsided score itself — is a product of the way we treat women’s sports differently from men’s. Many of the traits valued in sports are violations of the qualities we expect women to embody. The result is that women athletes face a double standard: People still react negatively when women express the competitiveness and aggression that are routine in men’s sports.”

Friday at the Women’s World Cup

There were three group stage World Cup matches played on Friday, with the aforementioned Scotland and Japan battle starting the day off. The second game saw the surprisingly dominant Italy (2-0-0) beat Jamaica (0-2-0) 5-0 and then the day wrapped up with England’s (2-0-0) tight 1-0 victory over Argentina (0-1-1). France, Germany, Italy, and England have now all punched their tickets to the round of 16.

Elsewhere, several features about the stars of the USWNT popped up, including one about the friendship between Mallory Pugh and Rose Lavelle, both World Cup rookies. Carli Lloyd is itching to get back to work, and Lindsey Horan spends her free time helping her teammates adjust to France. Boredom isn’t the biggest challenge facing the players, however.

Gold Cup Starts Today

The 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup will officially get underway tonight at 7:30 p.m. in Pasadena, CA when Canada takes on Martinique. Our neighbors to the north have borrowed Orlando City’s Will Johnson and Kamal Miller for the tournament, just like Honduras has Danilo Acosta and Trinidad and Tobago took Greg Ranjitsingh. Here’s a handy guide to everything else you need to know about the Gold Cup, courtesy of If you need more reasons to watch besides keeping up with the Lions and the United States Men’s National Team, Yahoo Sports has you covered.

Free Kicks
  • The Exploria Stadium “House Party” event is going on this morning. Hopefully, you’re not reading this too late!

Whew, we made it. Now get out there and watch some of the amazing soccer going on today!