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Major Link Soccer: Always a Sounder

Brian Ching helped the Sounders win the A-League Commissioner's Cup in 2002. 2013 will be his last season as a pro soccer player.

Bart Young

We're checking in on a couple of former Sounders in today's edition of Major Link Soccer. Zach Scott's fellow USL Sounder, Gonzaga Bulldog and native Hawaiian, Brian Ching will announce his retirement today in Houston. He won't be leaving immediately. He plans on finishing the 2013 season as a Houston Dynamo player. He is expected to stick around in Houston in a front office role with the Dynamo.

Ching's accomplishments include:

  • 3 MLS Cup titles
  • 5 MLS Cup finals
  • 1 US Open Cup title
  • 1 CONCACAF Gold Cup title
  • 1 MLS Supporters Shield
  • 1 MLS Golden Boot
  • First native Hawaiian to be drafted into MLS
  • 45 caps and 11 goals for the USMNT
  • Part of the USMNT roster at the 2006 FIFA World Cup

Congratulations on a wonderfully successful professional soccer career, Brian. Once a Sounder, always a Sounder.

Another former Sounder scored a goal yesterday. Mario Martinez converted a penalty for Real España in a losing effort in the Honduran Liga Nacional.

For the second time in three weeks, there will be a showdown in Seattle between the top two teams in MLS to decide the leader of the Supporters Shield table. The New York Red Bulls find themselves in a similar position to where the Sounders were two weeks ago. Although they're on a 4 game winning streak, they aren't exactly winning over the skeptics quite yet. The Sounders will be looking to put some space between themselves and the rest of the Supporters Shield contenders. There's even a chance of the Sounders clinching a playoff spot with a few favorable results in the other MLS games this weekend.

There are few things Brad Evans and Mario Balotelli have in common. Obafemi Martins and the fact that neither of them have missed a penalty are about it. They don't even have that, since Balotelli missed a penalty for the first time in his career in a Serie A match against Napoli. Balotelli was also suspended for 3 games after confronting the referee after the match.

Evans is going to have to fight for his spot on the final roster for the World Cup in Brazil, especially since many of his competitors at right back are showing signs of improvement in Europe.

Jozy Altidore will play for his third club manager this calendar year, after Sunderland fired Paolo Di Canio, who failed to win any of the first five matches of the season and had reportedly lost the support of the players. The candidates to replace him include Steve McLaren, Roberto Di Matteo, Roberto Mancini, Gus Poyet, Tony Pullis and Kevin Ball.

Elsewhere in the Premier League, Everton FC club members have been given the opportunity to vote on a new crest after the new one unveiled for the 2013/14 season was met with an outpouring of criticism from Everton fans.

There are a couple of disturbing stories from the countries that will host the 2018 and 2022 World Cup tournaments. In Russia, 13 fans were arrested and held for 30 hours without any food or water following the Main Moscow derby. In Qatar, FIFA appears to be ignoring the abuse of migrant workers being called upon to build the stadia and infrastructure for the 2022 World Cup. Although FIFA officials have made much of the health concerns of fans and players if the World Cup was to be held during the summer in Qatar, it is likely that hundreds or even thousands of migrant workers will die in the process of preparing Qatar for the World Cup.

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