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Major Link Soccer: Carlos Vela, Chicharito Hernandez next El Tri stars headed to Major League Soccer

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Tottenham might crash Upton Park. Earnie Stewart may come to rescue the Union. What exactly is a Swope Park Ranger?

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Seattle

Long-serving Seattle Sounders defender, current Senior Director of Business Operations, and Stanford alumnus Taylor Graham is being honored by the Pac-12 for his contributions off the field -- specifically his commitment to the community.

The Sounders took a hit in the aggregate power rankings over at RSL Soapbox this week. That's just what we want everyone else to think, right? (Right?)

Here's where the voting stands for the Sounders Alliance Council members. Readers will recognize a few names on the list.

Man, these 20 gigapixel images of games at CenturyLink  are pretty cool. Oh, look, it's Mike Russell!

Major League Soccer

Giovani dos Santos may have been the star Mexican player to open the floodgates to MLS (or maybe just the rumor floodgates). Now, Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez has been said to be US-bound eventually. But it looks like LAFC is already in talks with the striker to bring him in as a marquee player to start up the franchise in 2018.

But then there is also this bit about one Carlos Vela coming to MLS. Chicago Fire, in 2016, to be exact. [Spanish]

Frank Lampard won't be playing on loan anywhere in the offseason (since he didn't actually have much of a season to take off from). Manchester City is graciously offering him a spot on their training ground, however, to keep him in shape.

Speaking of favors from papa MCFC, with Jason Kreis looking pretty out at NYCFC, will Manchester City "loan down" Patrick Vieira to be head coach? NYCFC fans may not be pleased to hear their team described as a place where Vieira could make mistakes without pressure and learn from them.

What makes an ideal USL affiliate? The Brotherly Game asked other MLS blogs what to expect from their new team, probably named Bethlehem Steel.

Speaking of the Union, a Director of Soccer doesn't seem like a bad idea at this point. Soccer really isn't their strong suit at the moment. Earnie Stewart, former US international and current Director of Football for AZ Alkmaar, is being targeted by the Philadelphia for the role.

The New York Red Bulls are likely to sign a 16-year-old homegrown player named Tyler Adams in the offseason. The midfielder had been playing on a USL contract this year.

Other US Leagues

Alex Morgan will be an Orlando Pride player, and she will be in the same city as her husband Servando Carrasco. But when we talk about it, interview them about it etc., do we have to make so many assumptions and frame it starkly in traditional gender roles?

You can vote here for NASL league MVP (Golden Ball award). Lots of familiar former MLS players on the list.

Sporting Kansas City have announced their USL team, Swope Park Rangers. They put a bit more work into their crest than some (I'm looking at you, Sounders), but keep the SKC shape and colors.

Mobile, Alabama is the new Soccer City, USA. You heard it here first. (Ok, they are trying to launch a semipro team, close enough).

World

Wayne rooney will play at Manchester United until the end of time. Or, "well into his thirties," which for some MUFC fans will feel like the same thing.

Tottenham could temporarily play its home matches at West Ham's former home instead of at Wembley Stadium, which is a bit awkward (and probably won't happen).

Soccer statistical analysis is having a moment, but the sport has a "left-handed pitcher problem."

And finally, to apologize for getting Major Link Soccer up so late today, here is a video of puppies playing soccer: