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Lion Links: 9/28/21

Ashlyn Harris up for Save of the Week, Cincinnati fires Jaap Stam, MLS team observations, and more.

Houston Dash v Orlando Pride Photo by Jeremy Reper/ISI Photos/Getty Images

Happy Tuesday, everyone. There will be a quick turnaround for Orlando City this week, as the Lions take on Nashville SC tomorrow in Tennessee. Before we get to the news of the day, let’s take a moment to wish Orlando Pride midfielder Gunny Jonsdottir a happy 33rd birthday.

As usual, there’s a lot to talk about today, so let’s get into it.

Harris up for Save of the Week

The grass is still green, water is still wet, the Baltimore Orioles continue to be terrible year after year, and Ashlyn Harris has once again been nominated for the NWSL Save of the Week. I’ve long since lost count of the number of times Harris has been nominated for the award this season although the excellent stop she made this week was unfortunately in vain. In the 41st minute, with the Pride trailing 3-0, Harris made a flying stop across her goal to stonewall Rose Lavelle and keep the Pride’s misery from deepening further. Hopefully, Harris will keep doing her thing and Orlando will get back to winning ways soon.

Stam Fired by Cincy

FC Cincinnati has fired coach Jaap Stam, with the announcement made yesterday morning. Cincy fired general manager Gerard Nijkamp back in August, and Stam followed him out the door less than two months later. The team has lost six of its last seven games, has won once since early July, and is second-to-last in the Eastern Conference only thanks to a Toronto FC team that is marginally more woeful than FCC. Cincy has now had three head coaches since joining MLS in 2019. Its not totally clear where the team goes from here, but the first item has to be hiring a new general manager and then forging on from there.

MLS Team Observations

We have now completed 27 weeks of play in the 2021 MLS season, and some things have started to become clear as the end of the season approaches. For example, Inter Miami will need to be road warriors over the next few weeks if they want to keep winning and give themselves a chance to make the playoffs. CF Montreal is on the opposite side of the spectrum, with three straight home games to potentially take advantage of. As far as Orlando City is concerned, the Lions are the only team in the East above the playoff line with a negative goal differential and it’s no secret that things need to be tightened up if OCSC wants to survive its run of poor form and make the playoffs.

No Action Against Super League Trio

UEFA will not take legal action against the European Super League trio of Real Madrid, Barcelona, and Juventus after a Madrid court ruled that UEFA should not continue legal proceedings against them. The three teams are the last of the 12 clubs that were part of the Super League plans in April that have not disavowed the plans for the breakaway league. After the plans for the league collapsed shortly after their announcement, the governing body went out for blood from the 12 offending teams. Now though, UEFA will not ask for the “goodwill” payments that the nine teams who pulled out of the plans agreed to pay to UEFA to try and make amends.

Free Kicks
  • Orlando City dropped down to the 15th spot in ESPN’s MLS power rankings.
  • Four years ago yesterday, Kaká scored a howitzer at the purple palace.

That’s all for me today. Y’all stay safe out there.