Major Link Soccer: Local Legend Edition

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Even though MLS has taken a break for World Cup Qualifying, the news cycle has kept moving. We look at news stories from MLS and around the world in this edition of Major Link Soccer.

In sad news locally, long-time Mercer Island boys soccer coach Steve Newman died last week. Newman was the coach of the Islanders boys team for the last 17 years. Dave Clark had just recently contacted Newman with questions about Sounders Academy player Jordan Morris. It can never be emphasized enough that youth coaches are a tremendous resource for our community. The time and effort they put into the development of young people, both as players and people, is extremely valuable and never fully compensated. Rest in Peace Steve.

Sounders FC general manager Adrian Hanauer spoke with reporters after Monday's practice. He addressed a number of topics including last week's Leaders in Football conference in England, rescheduling the Real Salt Lake to Wednesday, RSL flying Eddie Johnson back to Seattle, the prominent Tanzania ads at CenturyLink Field.

We may complain about the USMNT underperforming in qualifying for the 2014 World Cup, but we are miles ahead of where we were just twenty years ago. Roger Bennet at ESPN takes a look at the progression of the USMNT starting with its miracle run to the 1990 World Cup.

Four years ago, Mexico tried to bring in Sven-Goran Eriksson to coach their national team. Is history repeating itself with Jurgen Klinsmann's reign as manager of the USMNT?

Although it was hoped that Fabian Johnson would play in Kansas City after missing the match against Antigua and Barbuda, it appears that he is still suffering from a severe bout with the flu. Without Johnson to defend the left flank, Klinsmann was left with limited options against Antigua and Barbuda and ultimately elected to play Carlos Bocanegra.

Lionel Messi had often been criticized for his performances with Argentina, but there are few complaints these days. With two goals last Friday, Messi is about to pass Diego Maradona for third place on Argentina's all-time scoring list at 34. At the rate Messi is scoring, he may even threaten Gabriel Batistuta's record of 54 prior to Brazil 2014.

CONCACAF clearly has public relations problems with issues such as corruption, officiating, and gamesmanship. Nonetheless, even the hapless officials at CONCACAF could probably have avoided the quandary the Asian Football Confederation find themselves in after the AFC website referred to the United Arab Emirates national team as the "Sand Monkeys." It appears that Wikipedia was the source used by AFC for the article. The UAE team is officially nicknamed "Al Abyad" or "The White."

Unknown to most soccer fans in the United States, soccer on the radio is booming. The satellite service Sirius XM is starting an all-soccer channel.

For 120 years, Liverpool FC have called Anfield home--and it appears that they will call it home for many years to come. Although multiple plans had been put forward for a new ground at nearby Stanley Park, Fenway Sports Group have announced that they will instead redevelop the existing stadium. The plan mirrors FSG's redevelopment of historic Fenway Park in Boston.

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