Written by Will Parchman

Watch. Listen. Sob.

“In the first episode of the Grantland Features series chronicling the twilight of Landon Donovan’s career, we follow the American legend during his farewell game as a member of the U.S. national team while he discusses the most memorable moments playing for his country.”

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Written by Will Parchman

DG

Every so often your senses defy you. In the world of U.S. soccer, Wednesday was one of those days.

The announcement that MLS commish Don Garber was preparing to hold a flash press conference on Wednesday afternoon lit through the soccer world like lightning. It was unexpected, and its genesis was hard to miss. What it produced was probably the most astonishing teleconference in the history of U.S. soccer. And not in a particularly good way.

Let’s back up. The USMNT was in Florida this past week for a pair of friendlies. and Jurgen Klinsmann had some choice words on the moves Clint Dempsey and Michael Bradley made in coming home. You can read Brian Straus’ entire story here, but the part that seemed to so incense Don Garber is probably this.

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Written by Maxi Rodriguez

pg2_e_soundersfood_576

If there’s one thing that influences your experience at a soccer match besides the game itself, it’s the stadium. We’ve all been there: expensive concessions, uncomfortable seats and bad sight lines; how your day at the park goes can often come down to the park itself. Sure, your team might have dominated their way to a 3-0 victory, but if those nachos were $8, was it really worth it?

While complaints about your local stadium are entirely natural, it seems that a few fans have taken to Yelp to voice their grievances. With that in mind, we’ve gathered a few of the most…interesting… negative reviews for MLS stadiums.

And yes, these are real.

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Written by Will Parchman

It’s true that this isn’t “new,” per se. It happened in 2010 and got a small amount of media coverage, but this being Canada, it didn’t make its way to the U.S. in any substantive form. Which is why today, we’re going to watch Winnipeg mayor Sam Katz kick a kid square in the face.

There isn’t much analysis here beyond the fact that Sam Katz is a mayor, and that’s a child, and Katz put his shoe in the child’s face with no small amount of force. The greatest thing about this video (other than the kid being OK, ultimately) is the slow-mo replay we get. I can just imagine the scene in the video editing room. “Bill… can we… can we slow this down?” *chuckles* “Uh, yeah, I think we can.”

Let this be your Throwback Thursday video. On a Wednesday. Because the 91st rolls like that.

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Written by Will Parchman

s2

SEATTLE – A panel of nine sat spread shoulder-to-shoulder Tuesday on a dais inside a pavilion at the Chihuly Gardens, an ornate snake of red glass flowers clinging to the ceiling crawling above their heads. They were gathered to announce the Seattle Sounders’ “unprecedented event,” and it was hardly surprising that men like Sigi Schmid and Adrian Hanauer were among their number. The announcement of a Sounders USL PRO franchise, after all, was a hardly contained rumor.

But there was also a group joining them who became significant soon after the press conference began. Representatives of the Sounders’ major supporters’ groups joined the team’s administrators, and it soon became obvious why. The announcement of the Sounders’ USL PRO franchise came first, the Sounders 2 beginning operation in 2015 as a standalone franchise under the Sounders’ developmental umbrella. Between Schmid and Hanauer was Andrew Opatkiewicz, a fitting visual considering the day’s ensuing events.

What came next was a surprise. The Sounders opened up 20 percent ownership of the new USL PRO franchise to the fans through a new organization called the Sounders Community Trust. The details of the trust are still filtering out – fans can buy in and have a voting stake in the club’s decisions – but the announcement was met with rapturous applause inside the pavilion Tuesday when it came down. Unsurprisingly, it was wildly popular among the Sounders faithful.

The establishment of a USL PRO franchise certainly wasn’t unprecedented. In fact, the Sounders’ Cascadia rivals in Portland announced their USL PRO venture, called T2, earlier in the day. But to have this level of fan ownership at any level in a soccer franchise in America?

Unprecedented indeed.

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Written by Will Parchman

It’s been a tough year for Chivas USA fans, who watched the Goats struggle on the field (as  per usual) before getting the news just weeks ago that the team was essentially folding. You feel for the diehards who’ve stuck it out through mostly lean years. At least for the next two seasons, they’ll have to find new allegiances. Or perhaps just root for whoever the Galaxy are playing.

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Written by Will Parchman

After finishing second in the spring, the New York Cosmos are currently mired in the middle of the NASL table at fifth 15 games into the fall season. It isn’t exactly where the league’s resident “Super Club” would expect to reside. Everyone around the club is feeling the press, and it’s apparently reached coach Gio Savarese. Luckily for him, his players kept their cool where he couldn’t.

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Written by Will Parchman

We have another battle of the sexes in this week’s coast-to-coast TDS College Goal of the Week tussle. It’s a lovely Syracuse men’s olimpico versus a crazy dart from the Cal women.

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Written by Will Parchman

Wesley-Sneijder2

It’s been three months since troubled Turkish giant Galatasaray paid Wes Sneijder’s salary. That’s a problem. In fact, that’s such a problem that FIFA has a protocol for this. Sneijder can legally step out of his contract for no fee during the ensuing transfer window, and judging by Galatasaray’s frequent problems (and those of the Turkish league as a whole, which is racked with issues), it’s hard to see him sticking around beyond January.

This kicks up a cloud of dust that has to involve MLS, if only speculatively. Sneijder is 30, and he’s the exact type of No. 10 MLS craves so desperately. He’s also the kind of low-risk signing the league needs. Creative, doesn’t rely on his physicality, unreal vision. His form’s dipped since he moved to Turkey (duh), but it stands to reason a soft landing ground will change that.

The question now is merely where.

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Written by Maxi Rodriguez

LD

Growing up as a soccer fan throughout the ’90s was akin to spraying yourself down with a bit of social repellant. Soccer was considered, and in some places still is, the sport for those kids who couldn’t cut it in football or baseball.

Sure, there were kids who managed to break through the hurdles that stood in the way of soccer players, but they were more the exception than the rule, and in most cases, were only interested in the sport on Sunday mornings for the few hours it took to travel out of town for club matches, checking out as soon as the final whistle blew. If you actually followed the sport, whew, good luck living a normal life.

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