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Lion Links: 11/14/22

The USWNT defeats Germany, Santiago Patino named MVP of USL Championship final, the World Cup nears, and more.

Soccer: International Friendly Women’s Soccer-Germany at USA Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Merry Monday morning, Mane Landers! We’re getting closer to the World Cup, and how exciting it is. Hopefully, you have figured out how to watch the matches if you have to go to work like me. If not, there’s still time to formulate a plan. In the meanwhile, let’s check out today’s links, but not before we wish Orlando City midfielder Andres Perea a happy 22nd birthday. It’s easy to forget how young he is sometimes because he’s already been with the club for a few years. Now, the news of the day...

USWNT Defeats Germany

Alex Morgan earned her 200th cap with the United States Women’s National Team’s in the friendly against Germany at Red Bull Arena.

While Morgan was unable to get a goal in the match, the U.S. was able to come from behind to win the match 2-1 on goals from Sophia Smith and Mallory Pugh. The win broke the USWNT’s three-match losing streak. Now, the Yanks will look ahead to the Women’s World Cup next summer in Australia and New Zealand. Unlike his players, Vlatko Andonovski will travel to Qatar to assist the USMNT in the World Cup. What role he will play has not been disclosed.

Santiago Patino Shines in USL Championship Final

San Antonio FC beat Louisville City FC 3-1 to win its first USL Championship title. Familiar faces were on San Antonio’s side as Orlando City’s Jack Lynn is on loan there alongside former Lions Santiago Patiño, Victor “PC” Giro, and David Loera. Patiño was named MVP of the final after scoring a brace and winning a penalty. The 25-year-old gave San Antonio the lead on a penalty kick in first-half stoppage time and then put the game out of reach in the second half during a nice counter attack.

Louisville battled back late in the match with a goal of its own, but San Antonio was able to hold on for the win. Patino made great plays all match long and finished this postseason with five goals across the team’s three matches.

Gearing Up for the World Cup

Most of us are not going to Qatar, but there are watch parties across the country, including in Orlando. The first two U.S. matches can be watched at Wall Street Plaza, and the third match and the World Cup final will be shown at the Ace Cafe.

World Cup host Qatar is in Group A with Ecuador, Senegal, and the Netherlands. The Dutch are the favorites to advance, though Senegal is dangerous with Sadio Mane on the roster. It will be interesting to see how Qatar is able to fare.

Both England and Canada have announced their rosters for the World Cup. Canada’s roster includes former Lions Richie Laryea, Kamal Miller, and Cyle Larin. Canada is playing in Group F with Morocco, Croatia, and Belgium. England is in Group B with the U.S., Iran, and Wales. The Three Lions will be the favorite to win the group with big name players like Mason Mount, Harry Kane, and Jack Grealish, and others.

Ronaldo Drama Continues at Manchester United

The ongoing saga of an unhappy Cristiano Ronaldo is well known at this point. In an interview with Piers Morgan, Ronaldo expressed his frustration with not being able to leave during the summer transfer window, despite stating that Erik ten Hag and others at the club want him out. If that sounds contradictory to you, you’re not alone. At this point, Ronaldo has six months left on his contract and may not play for Manchester United again after speaking out so publicly about his manager.

Free Kicks
  • Orlando will host NBC’s Premier League Fan Fest on Jan. 21 and Jan. 22 at Universal CityWalk.
  • Ricardo Pepi did not make the USMNT World Cup roster. Of course, he then scored a goal for Groningen in his first match since.
  • Christian Pulisic published a memoir. It might seem strange that someone so young would do so, but to be fair, he titled it Christian Pulisic: My Journey So Far. The most interesting parts are his comments on his time at Chelsea and dealing with Thomas Tuchel.
  • FIFA is introducing stronger tobacco and smoke-free regulations at the World Cup in conjunction with the World Health Organization.
  • Former Brazil Head Coach Luiz Felipe Scolari is retiring from club coaching following Athletico’s 3-0 win over Botafogo. He will most likely return to the club in an executive position.
  • Rutgers defeated Indiana 3-1 to win the Big 10 title. The winning goal was an Olimpico from Ola Maeland early in the second half.
  • I’ll leave you with more of Alex Morgan’s 200th cap celebration.

That will do it for me today. Enjoy your week, and check back for more news as the off-season continues.