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Lion Links: 6/18/20

Patino happy to be training with his teammates, Pride show off their skills, Nani on Ronaldo, NWSL could come to LA, and more.

MLS: Sporting Kansas City at Orlando City SC Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Thursday, lionesses and lions. I sincerely hope you are all doing well and overcame your hump day with ease. It has been ridiculously hot as ever here in the sunshine state, so confining in the cool, air-conditioned quarters of my house no longer has to be forced upon me.

MLS is edging closer to a return, but the Premier League made a long awaited comeback and the newest Coppa Italia champions have been named as well. Now, to venture into the links.

Santiago Patino Buzzing to be Back

Santiago Patino said “It feels great to be back,” in a video posted by Orlando City. The Colombian was asked what he was expecting from the club returning to full training sessions. He replied that he is guessing there will be more focus oriented on 11-versus-11 scrimmages. Finally, the 23-year-old said it was important for the team to regain its chemistry, and when the team goes to the hotel in which they will all be staying, it will help greatly with that.

Orlando Pride Show Their Skills

With the Orlando pride set to return in nine days from today, the Pride showed off their skills on Twitter from a rigorous training session in preparation for the NWSL Challenge Cup. The Pride are set to take on the Chicago Red Stars June 27 in what is sure to be a massively captivating affair.

Nani Hints at Future MLS Move for Cristiano Ronaldo

Nani stated that a move to MLS for fellow countryman Cristiano Ronaldo is probable. The Orlando City captain said that the Juventus man told him he will “probably” end up in America at some stage of his career. Nani went on to praise the conditions of MLS and the United States as a country as well.

MLS is Back Tournament Has “Significant Flaw”

Orlando City, Inter Miami, New York City FC, the Philadelphia Union, the Chicago Fire, and Nashville SC all have less than a 50% chance of advancing to the knockout stage per Yahoo Sports. This indicates a major disadvantage for the aforementioned sides. Each of the other sides have a 65 percent chance of progressing. The story does provide a fix for the flaw.

USL, Players Reach Deal for July 11 Return

Various sources have reportedly told ESPN that the USL and the USL Players Association have agreed to terms for the July 11 return date recently announced by the league. The final hurdles were health concerns and economic relief for the league.

The agreement is subject to ratification by both sides, and an announcement could come by the end of this week.

Whether supporters will be allowed to be present will be determined by restrictions placed by local and state authorities.

Free Kicks
  • The NWSL is apparently looking to expand to the Los Angeles area. It appears that the LA Galaxy could be involved.
  • Schalke suffered another defeat, this time to Eintracht Frankfurt, however American, Weston McKennie managed a goal in the defeat. While Schalke have not won a single game since returning, McKennie has played well since the Bundesliga’s resumption.
  • Napoli edged past Juventus to win the Coppa Italia final. After an incredibly cagey affair saw the match end 0-0, Napoli walked away with the trophy after being more clinical in the shootout. After 90 minutes the match went straight to penalties and Gennaro Gatusso’s side emphatically pulled off the upset.
  • Sheffield United managed a draw away to Aston Villa after a massive error with the goal line technology. Despite goalkeeper Orjan Nyland blatantly falling behind the line with the ball in his grasp, the goal line technology did not notify referee Michael Oliver that a goal was scored.
  • The UEFA champions league will officially return Aug. 7. The remaining round-of-16 ties may be played at their original venues, the quarterfinals will be held in Lisbon Aug. 12, and the final will be held Aug. 23. The prestigious, European competition is following an American model, and each tie will be decided in just one game.
  • OCYS player and 2020 graduate Karina Groff is officially on her way to the University of Massachusetts after committing to the school.

That’ll do, pig. That is all for the links this Thursday. Keep on keeping on and I’ll catch you on the flip side.