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Major Link Soccer: America Invented the Assist

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There is actually a rivalry in soccer that is a century older than Cascadia.

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Happy Birthday Serva!
Happy Birthday Serva!

Last week, I told you about the goal line technology system being employed by the Premier League this season. In an interview, former England striker expressed his wish that goal line technology had existed in the 1966 World Cup final between England and Germany. He doesn't feel that it would have changed the result, but he thinks it would have kept West Germany fans from complaining for half a century about his controversial goal being allowed.

Tomorrow morning, The United States men's national team will face Bosnia and Herzegovina, who may be one of the 5 most underrated national teams in the world.

When Frank Rijkaard turned down an offer to take over as the manager of Paris Saint Germain in June, nobody would have guessed that he would wind up taking a job with Orlando-based Monteverde Academy, where he will attempt to instill a more European style of youth development.

If you talk to players or fans from Europe, you'll learn pretty quickly that statistics in soccer matter a lot more to American fans than they do for fans in other parts of the world. In fact, we invented the assist. The original NASL was the first modern league to keep records of assists.

The Cascadia rivalry has a lot of history. In fact, it probably has the longest history of any North American soccer rivalry. That is dwarfed when compared to the rivalry between England and Scotland, which predates Cascadia by over 100 years. The "Auld Enemies" will face each other tomorrow at Wembley Stadium for the first time since 1999.

Within the past week or so, MLS has tripled the amount of Panamanians in the league to a total of three. This has raised the question as to whether we can expect to start seeing more Panamanians in the league in the near future. After Panama's second appearance in the Gold Cup final this decade, it's probably reasonable to expect MLS teams to scout Panama more thoroughly in the coming months and years.

Joshua Mayers of the Seattle Times compiled a list of the records of each team in MLS since the month of April, and the Sounders have the best record in that time. That's a good sign for Seattle's chances of winning the Supporters Shield and locking up a spot in CONCACAF Champions League next year.

Two players from Sounders-affiliated clubs have signed their first pro contracts of their careers and are both heading to Scandinavia. Sounders U-23 defender Chris Brundage has signed with FC Jazz of Finland's third division. Sounders Women goalkeeper Erin McNulty has signed with Avaldsnes IL in the top flight league in Norway.

In response to NBC's Premier League team picker, SB Nation has introduced MLS 12th man, a team picker with a NES-like layout and function. It told me I should be a New York Red Bulls fan. For a Seattle sports fan used to losing, supporting an original MLS team that is still trying to win its first major trophy sounds about right.

After his 10 gallon hat trick in Frisco Sunday night, Landon Donovan has been named MLS player of the week.

The Eredivisie is already known for youth development, but PSV took it to another level last weekend. The average age of their first team, who won 5-0 over the weekend, is actually slightly younger than the average age of their youth squad.

Mark Geiger drew a lot of heat from fans on both sides of the Toronto vs. Seattle match last weekend, but his day was a walk in the park compared to Stéphane Jochem's first top flight match in France. A few minutes before halftime, Jochem mistakenly sent off the wrong player. He had shown a red card to Steeve Yago, but he ordered Uros Spajic off the pitch instead.

After this tweet, is #RonaldoWatch about to begin in Manchester?

Adding to Sepp Blatter's remarks about the difficulties of holding the World Cup in Qatar in the summer, FIFA vice president Jim Boyce claims that it would be impossible for fans to enjoy the World Cup there in the summer heat.

According to a new study, as many as one-third of clubs in England's League Championship and League One may be put up for sale at some point this season.

A glance at the list of the 25 best attended soccer matches in the United States this year tells me that the Sounders could potentially reach third place on the list with a sold out CenturyLink Field against Portland. The only matches that would be higher were the Gold Cup semifinal in Arlington (81,410) and the Gold Cup quarterfinal in Baltimore (70,540). As it stands, 7 of the top 25 matches this year are Sounders games.

Finally, happy birthday to Servando Carrasco, who turns 25 today.