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Lion Links: 11/24/20

Top moments of the playoffs’ first weekend, Christian Pulisic injury update, abuse in college soccer, and more.

SOCCER: NOV 21 MLS Cup Playoffs Eastern Conference Round One - New York City FC at Orlando City SC Photo by Joe Petro/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Hello Mane Landers, and happy Tuesday! It’s a big day for us, as this is the sixth anniversary of The Mane Land’s move from an independent Wordpress site to SBNation. We joined the network on this day back in 2014.

I don’t know about all of you but I am still watching Orlando City's penalty kicks on replay. That game was such a mixture of amazing and awful but I think it will go down as one of most iconic games in the team’s history. And the world was watching. Hopefully you are all enjoying your Thanksgiving week so far.

Now for some links:

Top Moments of the 2020 MLS Playoffs So Far

The 2020 MLS playoffs have only just began and yet it is off to a historic start. Obviously, Rodrigo Schlegel’s heroics for Orlando City made the Top 5 Moments of opening weekend. Schlegel quickly became an Orlando City legend with his penalty kick stop. But the rest of the playoffs have been just as entertaining. Eh, maybe not as entertaining but there have been some great moments elsewhere, too. New England scored its game-winner in the 95th minute from about 25 yards out. Tim Melia recorded a penalty kick shutout. FC Dallas had seemingly lost the match, until Ricardo Pepi scored in the 93rd minute before Dallas advanced in penalties. Let’s hope this entertainment continues in the next round!

And here is an updated bracket.

Christian Pulisic Injury Update

The United States star has had injury issues of late. This time it is a hamstring sidelining him. Pulisic will definitely miss Chelsea’s Champions League match on Tuesday. However, Pulisic is getting better and should be back with Chelsea soon.

“Christian stays back and doesn’t travel but the good news he has had good progression in the last week,” said Chelsea Head Coach Frank Lampard. “The reason he is staying back is to get some physical work in to hopefully have him ready for selection for this weekend and onwards.”

Fans to be Allowed at Premier League Matches

COVID-19 has certainly taken its toll on the sports world. In England, the Premier League has been played without any fans, as much of the country has been shut down. When this shutdown lifts at the beginning of December, “fans will be allowed to return to outdoor sporting events in low risk areas.” There will be just 2,000 fans allowed at these games.

Abuse in the Nation’s No. 1 Recruiting Class

The Cal Women’s Soccer program was ranked as the number one recruiting class in the country. However, things might be changing as multiple women spoke out about abuse from Head Coach Neil McGuire. McGuire has been coach at Cal since 2007 and made the NCAA tournament 12 times in that span. Over a dozen women talked about emotional abuse, fat-shaming, bullying, intimidation, and mistreatment that they received while on the team.

Free Kicks
  • If for some bizarre reason you did not how Orlando advanced in the playoffs, then this video here is for you. Or if you just want to relive the moment, go ahead and give it a click.
  • Alex Alvarado’s ex-teammate from his old club and Ecuadorian international Jhon Espinoza joins the Chicago Fire.
  • If you’re in need of some new Orlando City gear, then check out the deal below.
  • Former Orlando City gaffer Adrian Heath is hopeful he can re-sign former Lions’ star midfielder Kevin Molino soon. Molino is fresh off a brace in Minnesota’s first-round win over Colorado.

That’s it for today. The playoffs resume tonight with Toronto vs. Nashville at 6 p.m. (FS1) and Philadelphia hosting New England at 8 p.m. (ESPN).