Major Link Soccer: Zardmeister

Tony Meola remembers what a Zardmeister is - Mike Stobe

What is a Zardmeister? Sporting Kansas City fans are still trying to forget the answer to that question.

We're still keeping tabs on how some former Sounders players are doing in Europe. The second qualifying round of UEFA Europa League was completed yesterday, and Erik Friberg's Malmo FF advanced over Scotland's Hibernian with a scorching 7-0 win in the second leg to advance on 9-0 aggregate. That represents the worst ever loss for a Scottish team in European competition. As in the first leg, Friberg came on as a second half substitution, but the score was already 5-0 by the time he entered the match. Malmo will face Swansea in the third qualifying round.

Our other Swede, Adam Johansson, was not as fortunate. His IFK Göteborg side fell 2-1 to Slovakia's Trencín. Christian Tiffert played 70 minutes for VfL Bochum his first competitive match since last November in the 2.Bundesliga season opener against Union Berlin, which his side won 2-1.

A few days ago, we told you that Kenny Miller was close to signing a contract extension with Vancouver. On Wednesday, he officially signed an extension with the club -- for an extra 6 months. Understandably, Eighty-Six Forever is wondering whether extending the contract by such a small increment was the right move. His contract now runs through next June.

For the third time in recent years, the New York Red Bulls have signed the younger brother of a well-known player with experience playing for big clubs. This time, they signed forward Bradley Wright-Phillips, the younger brother of QPR winger Shaun Wright-Phillips. Once a Metro sees this move as one of many coincidences that seem to suggest an affiliation developing between the Red Bulls and English League Championship side Charlton Athletic.

Thierry Henry now has a full sleeve tattoo inspired by New York City, with landmarks like the Statue of Liberty and the Brooklyn Bridge. His teammate, Dax McCarty stars in a Continental Tires commercial with Heath Pearce, Dwayne De Rosario and Chris Pontius.

Real Salt Lake will be without its backup goalkeeper until next season. After a successful knee surgery, Josh Saunders will be out for 6 months. The good news for RSL (and bad news for the rest of the league) is that Nick Rimando will be available after Sunday's CONCACAF Gold Cup Final.

In what is unquestionably good news for raising the profile of the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup, the Timbers announced that the semifinal between Portland and Real Salt Lake will be locally televised in Portland on ROOT Sports.

Over at Burgundy Wave, there is a pretty nice photo gallery from last weekend's match between the Sounders and Rapids.

If you've never heard of the Zardmeister, you should check out this New York Times article about the successful rebranding of Sporting Kansas City. Tony Meola, who is mentioned in that article, is also featured in Judah Friedlander's MLS Storytime Theater.

It seems like almost every city without a MLS team wants a MLS team right now. A real estate developer in Detroit wants to build a 25,000 seat MLS stadium in the downtown area, where a failed jail project is located.

There was yet another incidence of racial abuse in Europe on Tuesday, and it was once again directed at an AC Milan player. Midfielder Kevin Constant chose to leave the pitch in the first half after the opposing team's supporters hurled racist chants at him in a preseason friendly. Italy's federation has launched an investigation, but Constant was criticized for leaving the pitch by AC Milan's vice president.

In a tragedy that illustrates just how important it is for paramedics to have a defibrillator on hand, 18 year old Yair Clavijo collapsed on the pitch in a Peruvian reserve match and was declared dead after CPR attempts failed to revive him. It turns out that he had a genetic predisposition to heart disease. The 11,000 foot elevation of the city where the match took place probably didn't help much either.

Soccer lost some influential individuals this week. Arturo Yamasaki, the referee who worked the game of the century between Germany and Italy in the semifinal of the 1970 World Cup, passed away earlier this week. Brazilian legend Djalma Santos, probably the best right back soccer has ever known, also passed away on Tuesday. Santos helped Brazil win 2 World Cups. In over 1000 career appearances for club and country, Santos was never sent off.

Ever since being awarded the 2022 World Cup, Qatar hasn't exactly been getting great publicity. With the pushback against Sepp Blatter's plans to move the World Cup to the winter already in full effect, FIFA Executive Committee member Theo Zwanziger threw gasoline on the fire by calling the decision to award the World Cup to Qatar a "blatant mistake".

Fredy Montero will feel relieved that he won't have to return to Colombia this fall, after Sevilla players and staff had $100,000 worth of valuables stolen from their hotel in Medellin while playing a friendly against Atletico Nacional.

Cristiano Ronaldo has always had a very powerful shot. A young fan in England got on the wrong end of one of them in a preseason friendly and was rewarded with a broken wrist. His dad won't be winning a father of the year award any time soon, as he ducked out of the way of the shot instead of shielding his son from the shot.

It's still just the preseason in Europe, but there have already been some spectacular goals. Clement Grenier of Lyon scored a beautiful no-look volley in a friendly against Real Madrid. Fredy Guarin of Inter Milan scored an impressive scorpion volley in a pre-game warm-up.

When it comes to the Premier League, I'd have to call myself a neutral, but I have to admit that this video of 95,000 Liverpool fans in Melbourne singing "You'll Never Walk Alone" is pretty amazing.

It's also amazing to me that a manager in Peru actually grabbed a referee by the neck after an offside decision went against his team.

Do you love to wear soccer jerseys but were always afraid that it makes you look ridiculous? Well, worry no longer. Men's Journal argues that soccer jerseys are actually becoming on adult men. They probably don't have the rave green or super cyan Sounders jerseys in mind when writing this article, but I am of the opinion that the shale away jersey is as good as any kit in MLS.

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