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Lion Links: 6/4/20

MLS and players agree to restart, Skinner plans for tough schedule, U.S. Soccer kicks off eSeries1, and more.

Portugal v United States - USWNT Victory Tour Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

Good morning, Mane Landers. I hope the day finds you well. Let’s go ahead and jump to the links.

Players Officially Agree to Restart Plan

Major League Soccer has avoided a lockout as the Players Association and the league agreed to terms for the restart plan yesterday. The agreement includes economic concessions for the current season, details for returning to play — featuring the tournament here in Orlando — changes to the CBA, and more.

“I think it’s very positive to start planning and programming everything to return to play,” one MLS general manager told CBS Sports. “We’ll keep a more than close eye on player safety and health before anything and will be proud to be able to [play] again. Hopefully it will be well received by fans and create even new fans.”

A statement from the MLS Players Association:

Marc Skinner Gears up for Utah

The Orlando Pride’s draw in the tournament will prove to be difficult as the team takes on the top three finishers from last season. As Pride Head Coach Marc Skinner plans for the tournament with all in-market players returning to training this week, the final roster will be assembled based on fitness levels and players who can take on multiple positions.

“We have things that we have to right from last year, that’s just fuel to our fire,” head coach Marc Skinner said. “It was a favorable draw [because] you want to play the best teams. Our mindset is whoever was picked for us, we’re going to go and give our all to beat them.” After months of quarantine and lack of competition, Skinner suggested every team in the tournament will likely be out of sync at first in Utah. “It might take a game or two to get into the tournament for everybody,” Skinner said.

Orlando City Foundation Event for Kids

The Orlando City Foundation has been finding creative ways to engage children during this global pandemic. The latest event comes to us in conjunction with foundation partner Fleet Farming. This Zoom event will aim to educate families on the benefits of having insects in the garden. There are a few required supplies, so be sure to check out the event page for more information.

Inaugural U.S. Soccer eSeries

The first ever U.S. Soccer eSeries1 is a four-team eFootball tournament featuring Spain, Mexico, Brazil, and the United States. It kicked off yesterday and will run through June 6. Playing for the U.S. are United States Men’s National Team goalkeeper Sean Johnson, United States Women’s National Team midfielder Allie Long, and the eNT’s Fiddle. The tournament is streaming on Twitch. Each player who represents the U.S. will take on their counterparts in a three-legged match with aggregate scoring. Viewers can donate to charities of the players’ choosing.

Free Kicks
  • Orlando Health’s Dr. Daryl Osbahr joins the discussion.

That’ll do it for me today, everyone. Stay safe.