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Major Link Soccer: Fredy Montero Talks Seattle

Also: soccer community support for disaster relief, and taking the fight to childhood cancer

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FC Bayern Muenchen Attends Oktoberfest 2017 Photo by Sebastian Widmann/Getty Images For Paulaner

Seattle

On the eve of the Whitecaps’ only regular-season match at Seattle this year, Fredy Montero wrote a touching account of his journey back to Cascadia and his feelings about returning to play in Seattle. Give it a read.

Although Montero has been lighting up the pitch with Vancouver, already tying his MLS season-high record of 13 goals, it will be good to see him back in the Emerald City tonight (if only he was wearing rave green)!

You may remember that earlier this month we told you about Scarves Fighting Cancer, and the limited edition Sounders scarves they are selling to benefit the Ben Towne Center for Childhood Cancer Research at Seattle Children's Hospital. Shortly after we posted the piece they added a third scarf “You Shall Not Pass,” designed by Stefan Frei. Quantities are limited and the website is only active for September in connection with Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, so get moving!

MLS

David Villa is back from injury sustained in training with the Spanish national team and had his first start with NYCFC in just under a month in the team’s 1-1 tie against Houston on Saturday. Villa, who was the MLS Golden Boot leader until his injury sidelined him, hasn’t scored a goal since NYCFC’s Aug. 20 2-1 win over New England.

Meanwhile, Portland’s Diego Valeri has leapfrogged Villa to take the lead in the Golden Boot race. Valeri has been on a record goal-scoring streak in MLS this year, notching 10 in the span of nine consecutive games (dating to Jul. 29).

Speaking of scoring, how many MLS players can you think of who have scored four or more goals in a match?

And one final reminder: we are nearing the end of September — or rather “Scarftember.” There is still time for you to join the Kick Childhood Cancer campaign — an initiative by Major League Soccer to raise awareness of childhood cancer. Participating is as easy as posting a picture with an MLS team scarf and tagging it with #scarvesup on Instagram or Twitter; MLS will donate $1 for every original post.

United States

Our friends over at The Mane Land are bouncing around the idea: if the USMNT doesn’t qualify could that be a good thing?

Others are odds-making on whether USMNT players will join in making symbolic protests during the national anthem at one of the remaining qualifiers.

Bruce Arena discussed the matter at more length yesterday, carefully treading a fine line between being supportive of the protests and communicating U.S. Soccer policy.

There is even some talk of the benefit of a coaching change, with Peter Vermes floated as a good candidate to replace Bruce Arena. (ed. note: that’s a positive move?!)

World

On the heels of its successful live broadcast, Unidos por los Nuestros (“United for Each Other”) that raised a whopping $3 million for American Red Cross relief efforts following the Mexican earthquakes, and spate of devastating hurricanes, Univision Communications Inc., has followed up with a two-day special soccer broadcast to raise donations for relief efforts. Check out the full schedule of programming and all the participating personalities (including the Sounders’ own Hercules Gomez!)

And if you really want to help — while also helping yourself — check out the Unidos por los Nuestros eBay silent auction page featuring some truly one-of-a-kind items. Fancy having a Copa America Centenario trophy of your own?

Finally, Bayern Munich may not have started the Bundesliga season in the dominating fashion to which they are accustomed, but even after a disappointing draw against Wolfsburg, and with a tough UEFA Champions League trip to face Paris Saint-Germain in front of them, the team remains carefree as they donned lederhosen and downed beers at Oktoberfest.

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