Merry Monday morning, Mane Landers! This is without a doubt the oddest time since I started writing for The Mane Land. We’re all taking in this difficult situation, some with more aplomb than others. I’m looking at you toilet paper hoarders.
We here at The Mane Land are hoping things get back to normal as soon as safely possible. We also don’t want all of our coverage to be COVID-19 related, but the news will most certainly be related to it as the world adjusts and deals with this pandemic. As our fearless leader Michael Citro wrote, we would love your feedback on what you’d like us to write about while we wait for this to all blow over. Let’s get to the links.
New CDC Recommendation
The CDC has come out with a new recommendation that gatherings should have no more than 50 people for the next eight weeks. Obviously, that is a length of time longer than the current postponed MLS season, which was suspended for 30 days. As of the writing of this article, The Mane Land does not have any response from Major League Soccer, or any individual clubs, regarding how this will affect games within that eight-week period.
Skinner Accepts New Challenges
Marc Skinner had half of a day between the NWSL cancelling preseason matches on Thursday, and Friday afternoon when it suspended workouts through the weekend. The club had one practice Friday morning and it was mostly business as usual for that training.
The club followed league protocols like not sharing water bottles or training pinnies. High fives were also a no-no. As of now, national team players returning will not be self-quarantined, but will follow standard CDC 14-day quarantine protocols. Skinner is hopeful that all his players will be able to return to the pitch, but has contingency plans ranging from intra-squad scrimmages to online training sessions. Of course, it all changes day to day and hour to hour for the Pride’s skipper as the situation evolves.
Even Longer Now
As mentioned above, workouts were originally suspended through the weekend. However, MLS workouts have now been suspended through March 20, and NWSL workouts through March 22, 2020. Also, Liga MX will also suspend its operations due to the pandemic.
Ronaldo Rumors Abound
There were rumors that Cristiano Ronaldo opened up his hotels as temporary hospitals to deal with COVID-19. However, his hotels disagreed with that rumor.
There had been rumours that two hotels owned by Cristiano Ronaldo would become hospitals to aid coronavirus relief.— Goal (@goal) March 15, 2020
However, a hotel spokesperson told RTL Nieuws: "We are a hotel. We are not going to be a hospital. It is a day like every other; we are and will remain a hotel." pic.twitter.com/r1IcQQm1wc
Before anyone gets upset with Ronaldo, let’s be fair to the footballer. He has a huge following, and is saying the right things.
- Manchester United’s Paul Pogba set up a fundraising page to help fight COVID-19. Pogba will match up to £27,000 of donations.
- A Seattle Sounders staff member tested positive for COVID-19. Fortunately, the staff member did not have access to the general public.
- The Vancouver Whitecaps took on the Colorado Rapids this weekend. The clubs played each other in Connect Four via Twitter. The Whitecaps won. Does that count?
- When a club travels, it pays for the players’ meals in advance. The aforementioned Vancouver Whitecaps donated their unused prepaid meals to the local food bank.
- The Portland Timbers and Colorado Rapids joined other MLS clubs, including Orlando City, in paying part-time employees during the postponements of the season.
Statement from Kroenke Sports & Entertainment Vice-Chairman Josh Kroenke. Looks like the #Rapids96 are joining the list of MLS clubs who’ll pay their part-time workers during COVID-related postponements: pic.twitter.com/IHGrufK6y0— Pablo Maurer (@MLSist) March 15, 2020
- The president of Switzerland’s soccer federation, Dominique Blanc, tested positive for COVID-19.
- Finally, FIFA put out a statement regarding how it is dealing with everything from avoiding unnecessary risks to rescheduling concerns.
Stay safe, wash your hands, and be good to each other. Vamos Orlando!