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Lion Links: 5/18/20

Nani’s biggest regret, Bundesliga results, Beasley’s next act, and more.

New York City FC v Orlando City SC - 2019 MLS Photo by Ira L. Black/Corbis via Getty Images

Merry Monday morning, Mane Landers! Are you back at work, like I am? I have to say, it’s a little disturbing how many people are out and about. I really hope we don’t end up with a second and worse wave of infections. That’s enough from Downer Dave. How great was it to have top level soccer back on screens this weekend? It was strange not having any supporters in the stands, but it’s a start. Let’s get to the links!

Nani’s Biggest Regret

Nani has played all over the world. From his childhood club, Sporting CP, to his time at Orlando City, Nani only has one regret. That regret is leaving Manchester United.

“I’ll tell you the truth, it will never be the same after leaving Manchester United to play for another club.”

Orlando City’s captain won four Premier League titles and the Champions League while with the club. That’s a lot of hardware and it’s never easy leaving one of the biggest clubs in the world. Of course, it wasn’t all sunshine and roses, as he once had to give Sir Alex Ferguson a ride home following a missed penalty kick that would have won the match. Ouch. Still, we’re all glad he’s in purple now.

Bundesliga is Back

For the first time in months, top level soccer was available to watch. Germany’s Bundesliga restarted its season this weekend and gave us eight matches, with one more to come today. Saturday’s slate included some plenty of goals thanks to Hertha Berlin’s 3-0 win over Hoffenheim, Borussia Monchengladbach’s 3-1 win over Eintracht Frankfurt, and Borussia Dortmund’s 4-0 drubbing of Schalke 04.

On Sunday, Bayern Munich rolled Union Berlin 2-0, and Cologne drew 2-2 with Mainz. You wouldn’t think much would be decided in the first weekend back, but RB Leipzig’s 1-1 draw with Freiburg may have knocked them out of title contention. Coming up today, Werder Bremen takes on Bayer Leverkusen at 2:30 p.m. (FS2).

UEFA and CONMEBOL Plans

With the Bundesliga opening back up, we turn to other competitions around the world. Looking to Europe, UEFA plans to resume the Champions League and Europa League campaigns and finish them in August. That seems a little quick given that all the national leagues haven’t started back up, but each of the competitions only have 16 games left. Of course, UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin stipulated that neutral site matches will be played if certain countries are not open for play.

On the other side of the world in South America, CONMEBOL has a more difficult road ahead given that the Copa Libertadores and the Copa Sudamericana competitions require all 10 of the continent’s footballing countries to be open following the pandemic. Of course, those countries have had greater trouble during this time than their European counterparts. It also brings up issues regarding transferring players from the South American leagues to the European leagues. Unfortunately, it will be the former that suffers.

Beasley to USL League One

No, DaMarcus Beasley is not going to play in the USL League One. He is pulling together investors to bring an expansion team to Ft. Wayne, Indiana. Well, there are soccer supporters everywhere, I suppose. It’s not as outrageous as it might seem on its face though considering it is his hometown as well. Beasley has an estimated 60% of the needed investment, and the league is looking to expand in several markets, including Indiana. While Beasley has just retired from playing, he feels this is the next logical step in his soccer career. Of course, we wish him all the best at increasing the soccer fandom in the region.

Free Kicks

That will do it for the links, but given that the Bundesliga started back up this weekend, I thought we should at least leave you with the classic German version of 99 Luftballons by Nena. Enjoy!