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Major Link Soccer: NASL in trouble

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Attendance woes might be the least of the league's concerns as the number of teams competing next year dwindles to 11.

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Seattle

Big D Soccer breaks down what went wrong for FC Dallas in the first leg, hanging the team's failures on a disastrous formation shift and the absence of Zach Loyd.

While Leslie Jones was hopping aboard the Sounders bandwagon, J.K. Rowling was pledging her allegiance to the Seahawks after Richard Sherman dressed as Harry Potter for a press conference.

The Sounders Academy and Whitecaps Residency teams swapped wins over the weekend; the Sounders U16s triumphed 3-0 over the Caps U16s while the Sounders U18s fell to their Whitecaps counterpart 4-2.

MLS/NWSL

Throughout the MLS-to-Miami saga, now passing 1,000-day mark since the franchise's announcement in 2014, both David Beckham and Don Garber have remained steadfast in their commitment to Miami.

Merritt Paulson recently appeared on "Timbers in 30", saying that he is "cautiously optimistic" about the team's planned 4,000-seat expansion, which would cost approximately $50 million and be privately funded.

After seeing lower-seeded teams race out to leads in all four semifinal series (and hold their opponents to zero away goals), MLSsoccer.com asks the question: Does home field advantage matter in the MLS playoffs? Having been on both sides of the coin, Sounders fans might have some opinions.

USA

After four straight years of growth NASL attendance declined by 20% in 2016, underscoring the instability and turmoil the league faces with keystone franchises (Minnesota United, Tampa Bay Rowdies, Ottawa Fury) moving to different leagues in the US soccer pyramid.

The Verge turns five years old today, and released an article on their rebrand and the revenue side of Vox Media (and how their ads are targetted just for you!)

World

Welsh star Gareth Bale signed a new 6-year contract with Real Madrid yesterday, signaling his intention to see out his career with the club as the contract runs through his age-33 season and contains a deterring buy-out clause of around €1 billion.

Soccer to Watch Today:

UEFA Champions League

10:45am Beşiktaş vs Napoli Fox Soccer Plus, ESPN Deportes, WatchESPN, Fox Soccer 2Go

12:45pm Ludogorets vs Arsenal Fox Sports 2, Fox Soccer 2Go

12:45pm Basel vs PSG ESPN3, Fox Soccer 2Go, WatchESPN

12:45pm Benfica vs Dynamo Kyiv ESPN3, Fox Soccer 2Go, WatchESPN

12:45pm Borussia M'gladbach vs Celtic ESPN3, Fox Soccer 2Go, WatchESPN

12:45pm Manchester City vs Barcelona Fox Soccer Plus, Fox Sports 1, Fox Soccer 2Go

12:45pm Atlético Madrid vs Rostov ESPN2, ESPN Deportes, Fox Soccer 2Go, WatchESPN

12:45pm PSV vs Bayern München ESPN3, Fox Soccer 2Go, WatchESPN