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Major Link Soccer: Training Camps Getting Underway, DC Having A Rough Go At Finding A New Home

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Friday was the last day to pre-order the 2012 edition of the Sounder At Heart official Scarf. Scarves are still available, but they are $20 apiece until we run out.

With training camps starting to fire up across Major League Soccer, that means more news is going to start rolling in and that means the official return of Major Link Soccer. That means every Friday and Monday you'll get your dose of all things Major League Soccer.

So without further ado..

Former Columbus Crew forward Robbie Rodgers has his work permit for England and is ready to strike it out in the nPower Championship with historic Leeds United. He was available to Leeds on a free transfer due to his contract expiring, the 24 year-old will sign a year and a half contract once he's gained international clearance. Rodgers has already played for Leeds in a closed door match with Newcastle.

The New York Red Bulls have started up training camp, and what's that mean kids? That means Rafael Marquez is back in a Red Bulls kit. At least he wont have Tim Ream to bash on anymore. At a pre-training press conference he decided that he need to 'clear the air' regarding some things he said last season.

"At a certain point in time I was misinterpreted," Marquez said through a translator, team spokesman Jurgen Mainka. "There were times the media might take one of the comments the wrong way. It would have been easy for me to just call it quits and accept one of the offers (to leave in the offseason). But I’m here and I’m part of this team and I’m very ingrained with what’s going to happen in the future."

He still has two matches left on his suspension from last season.

Speaking of the Red Bulls it seems that a judge has ordered them to play taxes on Red Bull Arena to Harrison New Jersey according to Judge Christine Nugent. She also rejected a claim by the team that the arena "serves a public purpose and should be tax-exempt". They could end up paying upwards to $3.6 million in tax bills to the town in which the stadium sits.

"Harrison has had a difficult time as a municipal entity," he said by telephone. "This is a shot in the arm."

FC Dallas is sending super utility player Jackson on a season long loan to his native Brazil, he will be playing for Cruzeiro. According manager Schellas Hyndman that Jackson need to head back to Brazil for familial reasons.

"Jackson is going to be playing with a very good team in an excellent league, which will help him improve as a player," said FC Dallas head coach Schellas Hyndman. "This loan will also give him the chance to spend the time he needs close to his home."

As I'm sure you know that over this off season LA Galaxy set-piece taker David Beckham's contract expired and he was looking for work. According to a SkySports report he had a couple offers on the table from Premier League teams though he wouldn't name exactly what teams. In the end he decided not to up root his family from the city of angels and signed a two year contract with the MLS Cup winners LA Galaxy.

"I'm not looking to retire after those two years. Not at this moment - that might change. "I'm 36 now, 37 in May, and I still feel good. I want to continue to play as much as possible. We were just talking about (former United team-mate) Paul Scholes retiring and then he comes back. Players miss it."

And there has been a cause of rampant speculation, as he has a clause that will allow him become a club owner when ever he decides to hang up the boots. The speculation being that he may become the owner of the 20th franchise in Major League Soccer.

It could be a while before the Black and Red of DC United find a new place to call home. Right now the city itself is knee deep in all kinds of fun things like: tax dodging, misusing government funds and that's just the tip of the iceberg. While at the MLS SuperDraft, MLS Commish Don Garber was asked about the situation in DC.

"[United president] Kevin Payne is working hard to try to find a solution there. It is very frustrating," said the commissioner. "I think he’s beginning to make some progress with the city council and with the mayor. If you guys follow local politics there, there’s been all sorts of challenges with local politicians who no longer will be free men, and that just makes the dynamic of negotiating that much more difficult."

RFK boarders the 5th Ward, the Representative of that ward is Harry Thomas Jr who has recently given up his council spot as part of a guilty plea on Federal charges. Those charges included theft and filing false tax returns. According to the report he embezzled $300,000 in funds that were ear marked for youth sports programs. Yikes.

We will wrap things up for this edition of Major Link Soccer with highlights from the scrimmage between the USMNT and USMNT U-23's. Hat tip to The Original Winger.

I'm always on the look out for news stories and sometimes I miss stuff, so if you'd like to bring a story that you feel needs to be put in Major Link Soccer - all you have to do is shoot me a email orionchef [at] gmail dot com.