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Major Link Soccer: Stupid Sexy Dempsey

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In which I express my profound gratitude that all of us can talk about actual games again. Also, "feels like I'm wearing nothing at all. NOTHING AT ALL"

Who needs Freddie Ljungberg?
Who needs Freddie Ljungberg?
Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

Seattle

After unveiling their latest masterpiece, ECS took the time to explain the latest tifo that decorated Sunday's Sounders 3-0 win over the New England Revolution. In blatant disregard for the city's current love/hate relationship with Chris Evans, the display featured a blue-green shield resembling that of a certain Marvel captain (though not the awesome one). Is there any question that someone important in Seattle's largest supporter's group is a comics fan?

Clint Dempsey was significantly involved in all three goals, inspiring Jerry Brewer to write this love note column to the man of many shields.

MLSsoccer.com's Matthew Doyle also liked what he saw on the turf last night, taking a close look at the formation the Sounders brought to the table. The stats nerds say that Leo Gonzalez was especially conservative (perhaps in order to mask his declining speed), which freed Tyrone Mears to make more forward moves and allowed Marco Pappa to creep closer to the middle of the field. All of that led to the play which Entertainment Weekly described as "Mudblood Magic."

The MLS CBA was agreed to and turned in about as close to the deadline as my UW homework assignments each week (more on that below), and it was in no way a sure thing. Leaks have indicated that many players voted against the deal, and Brad Evans had some strong words for whoever made those voting records public.

Now that the deal has been figured out, teams can theoretically go shopping. Sounder at Heart Erik816 put together a shopping guide/ wishlist that would put any 8-year-old nephew's Santa letter to shame.

In conjunction with the Sky Sports-MLS deal, Kim Little thinks that this summer's big transfers will greatly boost the league's profile abroad.

MLS

After much fanfare and a little bit of hand-wringing during CBA negotiations, Orlando City's #fillthebowl campaign went off with nary a hitch. 62,000 purple fans were on hand to watch a surprisingly exciting 1-1 draw with New York City FC, good for the ninth-best single-game attendance in MLS history. This is what things looked like when Kaka brought the game level in stoppage time:

As soon as the two newest MLS teams took the field, Don Garber was bored with them. As such, he announced that the newest expansion announcement would be announced by the end of April. #shinythings

Fans of Orlando City FC and New York City FC can play as their teams in FIFA 15 today, but only if they're playing on the XBOX 360 or Playstation 3 consoles. Rich people with current-generation consoles are out of luck for now, but the patch is still coming. When this does happen, can anyone inform me if A: It's possible to create a custom MLS tournament with this year's schedule, and B: if there's a way to keep Scott Caldwell from scoring on me every time I play Sounders-Revolution?

Try as they might, even the Timbers Army couldn't design a beer bottle large enough to drown their sorrows.

If you saw Fox Sports' coverage of MLS this weekend, you might have noticed a somewhat intrusive new sponsor.

I would never wish an injury on anyone, but Matt Besler going down in Sunday's Sporting KC-New York Red Bulls match may have been karmic justice for appearing in this commercial. (possibly NSFW)

Soccermetrics.net has the LA Galaxy winning the 2015 Supporter's Shield on goal differential.

US Soccer

If you are playing for a cup final and your game isn't televised due to poor lighting, you might be playing second fiddle. (US Women)

Other

Continuing to outpace the rest of their league in both goals and gumption, the New York Cosmos have set a date with the Cuban National Team in Havana, Cuba. The June 2 fixture will be the first time an American sports team has played in the Communist country in decades. With two MLS teams in New York, this is the kind of thing a team needs to do to grab headlines. But how will team officials keep their American players from defecting?

The chairman of the Iran-Persian Gulf League club Esteghlal got a little testy when answering questions from a reporter, and took a nontraditional way of letting the newsman know that the office is closed.

Aston Villa managed a huge victory in the FA Cup over derby rivals West Bromwich Albion, but the win was marred by four separate pitch invasions by fans. These incidents (and those of seat-throwing by Bromwich fans) have some calling it a "return to the dark ages" by some reactionary gits, but appear to have largely been a combination of stupidity and joy (which can be a dangerous mix in the right dosage).