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Major Link Soccer: VW and DC United split up

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DC United and Volkswagen part ways after a 6 year relationship.

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Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

MLS

Adidas recently unveiled the official ball of the 2014 World Cup: the brazuca. LAG Confidential notes that recent history suggests MLS will use a similar version of the ball next season.

Despite a dip in ratings in 2013, MLS is actually in a somewhat advantageous position when it comes to negotiating new TV contracts in the near future.

The Chicago Fire and Colorado Rapids are each facing issues surrounding the lack of promised development around their respective stadia. In Bridgeview, Illinois, property taxes have doubled and may still be on the rise. In Commerce City, Colorado, the owner of the Rapids has yet to deliver on his promises to develop the area around the stadium with hotels and restaurants.

The Portland Timbers and Sacramento Republic FC have reportedly agreed to an affiliation agreement.

After a 6 year partnership, Volkswagen will no longer be the shirt sponsor for DC United. The franchise is talking to potential sponsors to begin in the 2014 season.

As part of its offseason coverage, Black and Red United has come up with a way for its readers to rank their level of hatred for other MLS teams. As expected, the most hated teams are DC United's rivals in the northeast. Seattle is the 7th most hated team.

Taylor Twellman participated in a Reddit Ask Me Anything as part of a series of AMA's ahead of the MLS Cup Final in Kansas City.

Mexico

Two of last weekend's Liga MX playoff games were each viewed by at least 1 million viewers in the United States. The match between Club America and Tigres even beat out the Apple Cup.

England

Jozy Altidore finally scored his first official Premier League goal as a Sunderland player yesterday. Despite his opening goal, Sunderland still lost 4-3 to Chelsea.

Luis Suarez owned the day in England though. He netted 4 goals and set up the goal he didn't score in a 5-1 demolition job over Norwich City.

Germany

Sounder at Heart contributor Ryan Cowper writes on Bavarian Football Works about how Bayern Munich has stepped up to support one of its young players after his father was diagnosed with stomach cancer.

World Cup

On Friday, Kick TV and SB Nation will stream a live show covering the World Cup Draw, beginning at 10:00 AM PST. The United States has been placed in Pot 3 with the other CONCACAF nations and the nations from the Asian confederation (AFC). The hopes of the USMNT are strongly tied to how favorable of a draw they get on Friday.

American Soccer Now shows what the groups would look like if the World Cup was set up like the NCAA basketball tournament.