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Major Link Soccer: World Cup After Dark

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Looking ahead to Saturday, World Cup 2018, and beyond.

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

USA

Apparently there's something called the "CONCACAF Champions League" going on this year? It doesn't involve any teams in Rave Green (so it basically doesn't matter), but in case you were wondering, the final games of the group stage are coming this week. These games could make or break the CONCACAF runs of a few MLS teams (who again, aren't the Sounders).

After missing the playoffs for the third year in a row, the Philadelphia Union are scrambling for someone to blame. Well at least their CEO is, saying that their selection of players is anyone's fault but his own.

While Seattle's final game this weekend will definitely determine the Supporters Shield, there's a chance it won't decide MLS's MVP. Obafemi Martins and Robbie Keane seem to be the strongest candidates, but we can't forget about Lee Nguyen.

In another move to make themselves known in NYC, the New York Cosmos appear set to sign Spanish striker Raul. According to reports Raul will also head up the Cosmos' youth system.

The USWNT beat Haiti 6-0 yesterday, extending their home unbeaten streak to a mere 90 GAMES. They haven't lost at home since 2004 (or in other words, over half this writer's life).

Soccer by Ives is reporting that the USMNT's game against Croatia on November 12th will be cancelled, but another game will be scheduled in replacement.

Aron Johannsson made his way back to his first action since the World Cup, scoring in an AZ Alkmaar reserve match. AZ currently sits in ninth, nine games into the season.

Gyasi Zardes is an American who hasn't earned fame through European stardom or the USMNT, and for that he's changing MLS.

In order to help "reignite one of the best home court advantages in the country," the Milwaukee Bucks are giving away free tickets to one hundred of their loudest, most rambunctious fans. They'll be holding auditions to determine members of their Ultimate Fan Squad soon.

While Adrian Hanauer isn't giving away tickets to Seattle's most die-hard fans, you can win two tickets to the upcoming game against LA here.

If you missed the cause of Obafemi Martins's yellow card or want a second look at Omar Gonzalez's cards, you'll have to pay the price of sitting through eight minutes of Simon Borg. Or I guess you could just put  it on mute and have someone tell you that Sounders related content starts at 5:55, but that takes all the fun out of being mildly annoyed at Simon Borg.

World

Juan Agudelo's journey through Europe just hit another road bump. This time Wolverhampton decided against signing him on the basis that he wasn't match fit.

In yet another case of "a European team is jealous of and then tries to be exactly like the Sounders," Sunderland is considering reimbursing fans after their 8-0 loss this weekend. Well technically their keeper is urging their front office to reimburse fans, but comeon that's pretty much still copying the Sounders.

While the searing heats are not the main issue surrounding playing a World Cup in Qatar, they are certainly something that will have to be addressed. "Play the first games at 7 pm, the second games at 10 pm and the third matches at 1 am," says FIFA official Harold Mayne-Nicholls. Perhaps the World Cup will be played with those super cool glow-in-the-dark soccer balls.

Billy Beane's contract with the Oakland Athletics is up in 2019, and his next adventure could be in soccer. Asked whether he'd consider a job in the beautiful game, "Oh, yeah, absolutely" he said.