Major Link Soccer: Top sponsors pressure FIFA

Laurence Griffiths

5 of the World Cup's 6 biggest corporate partners are backing a full investigation into corruption behind Qatar's 2022 World Cup bid.

Seattle

Lamar Neagle made the MLSsoccer.com Team of the Week for providing the game-winning goal in Chicago on Saturday, while Osvaldo Alonso was named to Goal.com's MLS Team of the Week for completing 66 of his 71 pass attempts.

If All-Star voting ended today, the Sounders would send DeAndre Yedlin, Chad Marshall, Clint Dempsey, and Obafemi Martins to the All-Star Game. The biggest surprise may be the fact that Alonso isn't one of the top 7 midfielders in the voting.

Clint Dempsey makes an appearance against the Vancouver Whitecaps in the official gameplay trailer for FIFA 15:

MLS

Both expansion teams joining MLS next season will have partnerships with top European clubs. In addition to New York City FC's relationship with Manchester City, Orlando City has announced a "cooperation agreement" with Benfica. Orlando is an interesting choice for Benfica, especially since, like Lisbon derby rivals Sporting CP, Orlando City's shield bears the image of a lion.

It looks like the Portland Timbers could start a USL Pro team in Oregon next year.

The Goat Parade spoke with one of the Chivas USA supporters who helped publicize the seemingly racist actions of some LA Galaxy fans.

Tampa Bay appears eager to join the growing list of cities interested in becoming the 24th team in MLS, with the Rowdies planning to build a new 18,000 capacity stadium.

US Soccer

Jeremiah Oshan wrote on SB Nation that Jürgen Klinsmann is making the national team more representative of the United States.

TV advertising for soccer in the US has increased 43% since the 2010 World Cup, in case you needed more evidence that the sport is growing.

World Cup

The tournament hasn't started yet, but Alexi Lalas has already succeeded in trolling at least one Mexico fan.

As hundreds of protesters joined the striking transit workers in São Paulo, police responded with tear gas and arrested 13 of the striking workers in an effort to stop a riot at a subway station. The transit strike has a huge impact on the daily lives of São Paulo residents, with 40% of the city's subway stations closed yesterday.

Hey look -- it's a freestyle soccer samurai in Brazil:

According to the Soccer Power Index, the host has the highest chance of winning the World Cup, with Brazil given a 45.2% probability of winning the tournament. The probability of the United States winning the World Cup is 0.4%.

FiveThirtyEight's World Cup predictions give the United States a 35.5% chance of advancing beyond the group stage.

Ghana's 4-0 win over South Korea and the return of Cristiano Ronaldo to Portugal's lineup can't be welcome news for US soccer fans.

Check out this Venn diagram of every team's expectations at the World Cup.

ESPN released the broadcast teams for the first week of the World Cup. Kasey Keller will provide commentary for four matches.

According to ESPN Deportes, Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez won't be a starter at the World Cup.

Nike has released another video promoting the World Cup:

FIFA

Sepp Blatter's thinks the claims being made about corruption leading to the 2022 World Cup being awarded to Qatar are based on racism. Despite that, 5 of the top 6 corporate sponsors of the World Cup are putting pressure on FIFA to launch a full investigation into corruption over the Qatar bid.

In case you haven't seen it already, John Oliver really let FIFA have it in this 13 minute segment on HBO's Last Week Tonight:

Europe

A new report from a group of UK politicians proposes restrictions on heading the ball in youth soccer to avoid concussions from leading to serious health issues in the future for soccer players.

AC Milan has fired Clarence Seedorf after only 5 months as the team's manager, replacing him with Filippo Inzaghi.

Soccer on TV

Friendly 5:00 PM Ireland vs. Portugal beIN Sports, beIN en Español
Documentary 5:30 PM Inside: US Soccer's March to Brazil ESPN
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