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Major Link Soccer - Glorious Day Edition

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'Tis a glorious day in the Sound. No, the weather isn't likely to be nice. It's going to be as wet and soggy as Ireland in a Frank McCourt novel. It's a glorious day because the Sounders are playing a live game once again and I finally have tickets. Yes, I'll be outside in the rain at Starfire cheering on the Sounders and loving life.

It's seems like forever since last season ended. It's been even longer since I've seen some of my favorite Sounders play like Jhon Kennedy Hurtado and Brad Evans. I'm really looking forward to seeing them hit the field again along with some of our new guys like Michael Tetteh and Servando Carrasco. The Sounders website has a video preview up and an article on the Cascadia rivalry. The Sounders website will be streaming the match later today for those of you whom can't make the game.

SB Nation Acquires the Offside: SB Nation recently acquired The Offside and FanTake networks. The Offside is a international soccer blog with good coverage of teams across the globe. It was one of the first Sounders blogs I happened to come across when I first started getting interested in the Sounders. Denny over at the Seattle Sounders section has a lot of good content. A big welcome to Denny and all the other MLS bloggers at the Offside!

More news and links after the jump:

Servando Catches Lightning: Servando Carrasco brought his digital video camera to a Tampa Bay Lightning game before the team left Florida training. You can catch the video clips here. I'm hoping Sigi runs them through some mustache growing skills soon (bonus points if you can identify Jordan in the comments section). I'm thinking there must be some kind of contest going on.

WVHooligan Starts the Rankings: It must be that time in the preseason when writers everywhere break-out the rankings. Drew Epperley, whom is usually pretty good on these types of things, has ranked the defense and goalkeepers in MLS. He ranks the Sounders at 4th in the goalkeeper category and 5th in defense. I personally think the Sounders are a deeper defensive team than the New York Redbulls and should probably get the 4th spot in defense as well.

Darlington Nagbe Out: The Timbers #2 draft pick won't be playing today at Starfire. The young rookie will be undergoing sports hernia surgery today. He will be out for 2-4 weeks and will likely miss the opening game for the Timbers. Best wishes from SAH on the surgery and a quick recovery. In other Timbers news, Sporting Kansas City has traded versatile defender Jack Jewsbury to the Timbers. His experience in the MLS should be a welcome addition to a Timbers defense that lacks it. The Timbers ranked next to last in WVHooligan's rankings of team defenses for the upcoming season.

More Contract Woes in Toronto: The dysfunction in Toronto continues as central defender Adrian Cann leaves camp over a contract dispute. Cann was the team's MVP last season and an anchor for the back-line. Despite his performance last year the team seems unwilling to renegotiate his contract. Cann made $65,342 in salary last year. WVHooligan ranks Toronto last in his rankings in team defense and this dispute surely won't help matters. 

RSL Moves on in CCL: Real Salt Lake beat the Columbus Crew 4-1 to move to the next round of the CONCACAF Champions League. In the previous link denz has player ratings for the game. He is also compiling a report card for RSL throughout CCL play. Valuable information for those of us involved in the ESPN FC Manager competition here at SAH.

No Love for CONCACAF: There was both rumor and hope that CONCACAF would get another automatic berth into the next World Cup. Unfortunately, it didn't pan out. CONCACAF will still have three automatic berths and a play-in for a fourth.

Mayor Greg Nickels A Sounders Fan: Former mayor Greg Nickels is apparently a long-time Sounders fan. In a recent interview Mayor Nickels talks about going to NASL Sounders games with his father.

Kevin Sakuda Coaching the Washington Rush: Former USL Sounder defender Kevin Sakuda has returned to the Northwest this week to take a coaching position with the Washington Rush. Sakuda will be the director and the team coach of the Washington Rush. Sakuda helped lead the Seattle Sounders to USL-Division 1 Championships in 2005 and 2007.

Capital Hill Soccer League: David Falk over at the Seattle Soccer Examiner has an interview up with the founder of the brand new Seattle United Soccer League. The league is focused on having a fun time and is gay friendly. Games are scheduled every Saturday at Genesee Soccer Complex.