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Lion Links: 12/16/21

Orlando City announces full 2022 schedule, Yoshimar Yotún return rumors, MLS trade news, and more.

MLS: Houston Dynamo at Orlando City SC Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

We have made it to another Thursday, Mane Landers! We are now less than 10 days away from Christmas, so make sure you are getting those holiday preparations done in time to avoid the procrastination rush. Now let’s get to the Lion Links.

Orlando City Announces Full 2022 Season Schedule

Mark your calendars, City fans! The full 2022 MLS season schedule is here and we now know all the upcoming opponents that the Lions will face. The Mane Land’s Michael Citro wrote a full breakdown of the schedule here. The matches I am personally looking forward to are the home match against LAFC on April 2, the first regular-season match against new expansion side Charlotte FC on April 30, and always of course the matches against our southern rivals, Atlanta United and Inter Miami. There are lots of intriguing matches coming up this season so make sure to look trough the schedule and circle your favorites.

Rumor: Yoshimar Yotún Receives Offer From Orlando City

Could a potential reunion with a former Orlando City midfielder be on the table for the club? According to Nick Negrini from Pulso Sports Perú on Twitter, Yoshimar Yotún is “very close” to returning to Orlando City and the Lions have sent him a formal proposal.

If this turns out to be the case and we see Yotún back in purple, this will be much stronger club that he is returning to than when he left in 2018. A player of his skillset could be a huge boost to the current players around him on the roster currently and even for new players that could arrive during the offseason transfer window. Yotún was shoehorned into an attacking midfield role the last time around and his more natural position seems to be well covered on the current roster, so it’s unclear how he would be used.

LA Galaxy Trade Sebastian Lletget to New England Revolution

The USMNT midfielder has been acquired by the New England Revolution in exchange for up to $1.3 million in General Allocation Money (GAM) with $500,000 guaranteed to the LA Galaxy. Lletget gets another chance with his former LA Galaxy manager, Bruce Arena, this time in New England. In Lletget, Arena looks to have found his replacement in a player that he knows well and can trust after Tajon Buchanan was transferred to Belgian side Club Brugge for $7 million.

Don Garber Talks Future of MLS

In a sit down Q&A interview with ESPN, MLS Commissioner Don Garber talked about what could be upcoming for the league and gave his insights to what he can share at the moment. The more interesting tidbits are that MLS expansion frontrunners Las Vegas and Phoenix are required to have indoor stadiums due to extreme heat and weather. Although for Las Vegas and Phoenix, a quick solution could be Allegiant Stadium and State Farm Stadium, homes for the NFL’s Las Vegas Raiders and Arizona Cardinals, respectively —unless, of course, the ownership groups of these franchises decide it is in their best interests to build their own soccer-specific indoor stadiums. Garber also touched on topics involving media rights deals for the league along with ways to partner with Liga MX.

Free Kicks

That is all for me, Mane Landers. I hope you all enjoy your Thursday.