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Major Link Soccer: Goodbye Landon Donovan

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Landon Donovan gets his swan song, Giancarlo Gonzalez is officially sold, and more

Jeff Gross

Seattle

Obafemi Martins has been credited with an assist on Chad Barrett's goal against Portland, meaning he played an official part in all four Sounders goals.

In case you weren't aware, the rivalry between the Sounders and Timbers is alive and well. But beyond the back and forth between the two teams, or the balance between fun that the supporters have and marketability by MLS, the rivalry depends on its off-field and on-field aspects fueling each other harmoniously.

Sounder at Heart is hosting a viewing party for the U.S. Open Cup final. You should come.

MLS

The New York Red Bulls played Salvadoran side CD FAS yesterday, winning 2-0 with goals coming from Lloyd Sam and new acquisition Saer Sene. New York are now in third in their group, with a game in hand on first place Montreal Impact.

NHL expansion is set to come to Las Vegas, and perhaps if it goes well MLS will consider a similar move.

Jermaine Jones had his first press conference as a New England Revolution player yesterday. Among some other interesting quotes, Jones said that it was USMNT Coach Jurgen Klinsmann who pushed him to return to MLS.

Jones was busy with more than just that though, taking time to visit the Revolution Youth Academy as well.

The Chicago Fire, on the other hand, appear to be not very happy about this whole Jermaine Jones thing. This combined with a post (that was quickly taken down) on the Fire website chastising fans for not being grateful enough has Hot Time In Old Town wanting to think a little bit less about MLS things.

A former Sounders goalkeeper has been doing very well in MLS this year. No I'm not talking about Kasey Keller's broadcasting (although I do love me some Kasey Keller), I'm talking about Steve Clark who was signed by the Sounders during the off season and then immediately traded to Columbus. Massive Report takes a look at how Clark's time in Norway helped him develop.

The transfer of Columbus's Giancarlo Gonzalez to Palermo has been made official.

If you've ever reached out to a celebrity on Twitter, you'll definitely want to read this. No Will Johnson didn't finally admit he's a jerk like I've been telling him to for ages. A Sounder at Heart reader designed a bunch of boots for Oba, which Oba contacted him for and eventually wore. Talk about awesome.

It looks like Landon Donovan is going to get a proper send off, despite not playing in the 2014 World Cup. Donovan has been called up to the USMNT's October 10th friendly against Ecuador for one final cap, and will likely feature for 20-30 minutes according to Sports Illustrated. This seems like the right thing to do to honor Donovan's career, especially considering how much we all don't want LA to win anything this year.

World

Real Madrid released a third kit with a dragon on it. It's pretty cool. Speaking of which, what exactly is a sounder and how can we get one depicted on a jersey?

Despite rumors of Lukas Podolski making a transfer away from Arsenal (and possibly to the Red Bulls), a recent injury to teammate Olivier Giroud means Podolski is likely to stay put. Arsenal Coach Arsene Wenger confirmed as much, saying simply "Podolski is in the squad for Wednesday and will stay with us."

After 106 appearances with the English National Team, New York City FC Designated Player Frank Lampard is retiring from international soccer. With teammate Steven Gerrard also having retired from international play, England's center midfield role seems to be up for grabs.

In taking a year long sabbatical from international soccer, Tim Howard will only be missing one "important" series of games- the Gold Cup. Goal.com wonders whether CONCACAF is giving too little of an incentive for a player like Howard to participate in the Cup, or whether inter-federation play poses too much of a time commitment.

After winning the Hermann Trophy at Cornell, Daniel Haber decided to try his luck abroad instead of going for an MLS contract. Haber says that he wanted to have the option of going on trial with another team if his first contract didn't work out, which he didn't feel he could do in MLS.

Bigotry is still a big part of soccer, which the recent Malky Mackay scandal has helped confirm. Mackay, who had previously come out strongly against discrimination in the beautiful game, was reported by ex-club Cardiff City to have sent numerous homophobic and racist texts and emails within the club. SB Nation looks at some of the larger incidents of bigotry in soccer and the inadequate apologies that have been made for them.