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Lion Links: 1/1/20

Nani’s best of 2019, Orlando Pride tryouts, top clips of 2019, and more.

MLS: Colorado Rapids at Orlando City SC Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Happy New Year, Mane Landers! We’ve officially made it to the same year as the upcoming season, which means it’s getting closer. Let’s start this first day of the new year by jumping into the links.

Nani Shares His Best Moments of 2019

Orlando City’s captain shared his best of 2019 video on YouTube yesterday and talks about his first season in Orlando. Nani discusses having a lot of beautiful moments, from winning a cup in Portugal to his arrival and season in Orlando, but spoke about being able to produce more goals and he expressed his excitement for the 2020 season. The video includes his thoughts on being in MLS with Wayne Rooney, his MLS All-Star experience, and how his son appropriated a guitar he won for being Man of the Match. Check it out. It’s well worth the watch.

Orlando Pride to Hold Open Tryouts

The Orlando Pride will be holding open tryouts on Feb. 1-2 (second day is by invitation only). The registration deadline is Jan. 30, and the cost is $100 and those interested much qualify under the club’s listed requirements:

  • Those wishing to try out must be 18 or older and have prior college/professional playing experience.
  • Registrants will need to provide proof of medical insurance and sign a waiver prior to trying out.
  • Participants will need to bring appropriate footwear and shin guards. Water will be provided on site.

College players wishing to try out should meet with their university’s compliance officer as well.

Megan Rapinoe and Budwiser take on NWSL Advertising

The USWNT’s, Megan Rapinoe is no stranger to marketing the NWSL but she’s sick of being told to talk about being a role model.

“I never want to be featured in a marketing product where the very first thing said about me is that I am a role model because I should already be that. I already am that,” Rapinoe told Yahoo Sports. “Kids should already be looking up to us because we play for national team.” Rapinoe continued, “Not that being a role model is not important — we do that work every day and we take it seriously. But we have to think about, as teams and as the league, what are we marketing this product as? Is it just ‘Wow, this is super inspiring for little girls?’ Well, no s---, this is the highest level they can get to — we don’t need to market it to them.”

As the NWSL shifts from surviving to thriving, Budweiser's campaign aims to help by calling out other brands that claim to care about female empowerment to put their money where their mouth is.

FOX Sports Top 10 Clips of 2019

FOX Sports counted down their Top 10 Clips of 2019 with a strong showing for Orlando Pride players. Alex Morgan came in third with her goal against England and infamous follow-up tea celebration:

Not to be outdone, Marta finished second with her warrior cry to the next generation of female soccer players.

Free Kicks
  • Charlotte’s MLS team hired Zoran Krneta as sporting director.
  • FOX Soccer fans chose their Women’s Player of the Decade.
  • Sydney Leroux reflected on not only a huge year, but the past decade.

That’s going to do it for me, Mane Landers. My husband and I don’t really do resolutions, but you can find us at the book store today looking for books with a title that we want to inspire our 2020. What are your New Year’s Day traditions?