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Major Link Soccer: Sen. Maria Cantwell questions US Soccer over solidarity payments

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The Copa América Centenario may be headed to Mexico. Why Philly should leave the Bethlehem Steel name alone. Who killed promotion/relegation?

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Seattle

Washington Spirit visits Seattle Reign at Memorial Stadium this Sunday for the NWSL Semifinal, but Spirit (and USWNT) defender Ali Krieger won't be a part of it. Her father is getting married this week. Nice work, Daaaadddd!

David Estrada was never the most skilled Sounder, but always gave an all-out effort when he saw the field. He also scored a sweet hat trick that one time. He has been journeyman-ing around for a bit, and has finally found a spot where he feels he really fits at OC Blues.

Premier League teams are starting to experiment with using drones to film practices, but Seattle invented it (see embedded video).

American Leagues

The Bent Musket has an interesting interview with NWSL commissioner Jeff Plush after a regular season with lots of positives, despite some hurdles (one giant hurdle in particular in scheduling around the World Cup). He looks ahead to how the league will build their brand.

It looks like Philadelphia Union's USL affiliate team will reboot the hallowed name of "Bethlehem Steel," and here's why one Philly writer thinks that is a very bad idea.

David Beckham has found a site for his Miami team. No, really this time. MLS Commissioner Don Garber said he's "as confident as we ever have been" that it will happen. Which means I am as confident as I ever have been that it will fall apart somehow.

Garber sat down with Sky Sports News and talked up the league's successes. He's still a believer in the "one of the world's best leagues in 10 years or less" thing.

But wouldn't American pro soccer be better with promotion and relegation? What's that? You heard on Twitter that a secret document has been uncovered proving that a young Sunil Gulati gleefully destroyed pro/rel before it could become the law of the US Soccer land? Well, here's a much more reasoned interpretation that ruins the fun.

US Soccer

Washington Senator Maria Cantwell submitted four questions for the record to US Soccer to clarify just why US youth clubs have never received solidarity payments and training compensation, and the responses are laid out well in this article. (tl;dr: "Cause we didn't feel like it")

And why would MLS want to pay youth clubs who develop players, since the network of MLS academies is in direct competition with those other clubs?

Nothing is certain yet, but the status of Copa América Centenario is in flux. Rumors have flown around that the tournament would go on, but not in the US. Now it sounds like it could be moved to Mexico. But the president of CONMEBOL apparently still supports the original plan to stage the tournament here. We'll see how things shake out.

Wherever the USMNT might or might not be playing next summer, it's highly unlikely Benny Feilhaber will be among the squad. Jurgen Klinsmann has ignored him during many opportunities, and Benny has accepted that his last call up may have already passed. It's a shame, since he's playing some of his best soccer ever.

World

It's time to get together with four of your best soccer playing buds and qualify for 5-a-side nationals so you can go to 5-a-side World Cup in Thailand and represent your country!

A Cristiano Ronaldo Twitter shout out is worth $260,000.

Either Chelsea or Tottenham Hotspur, or maybe both teams, may use Wembley Stadium as their home ground(s) while new facilities are constructed, so that could get interesting.

Why is Iceland's national team doing so well? It's no accident, but years of investment and development.

Finally, here is the world's best goalkeeper, Purin, who also happens to be a Beagle: