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Major Link Soccer: New York City FC Keeps the West Race Tight and Sounders Focus on Galaxy

Plus USMNT performance concerns, broken deals, racist chants mar a qualifier, and a high profile MLS suspension

MLS: New York Red Bulls at New York City FC Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Seattle

“The Galaxy are the Galaxy.” That truism from Ozzie Alonzo encapsulates why the Sounders are making sure they don’t make the mistake of looking past their struggling Western Conference rival when they play their last match of the season against LA at Century Link Field Sunday. LA only just won their first fixture in 11 games against bottom-of-the-table Colorado (at home!) last weekend, but the Sounders’ hold on first place in the West is tenuous; they can’t afford to trip up and drop more points at home.

And as a follow up to yesterday’s post on Scarftember, September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Scarves Fighting Cancer, is selling limited edition Cristian Roldan and Brian Schmetzer scarves from Ruffneck to benefit the Ben Towne Center for Childhood Cancer Research at Seattle Children's Hospital. There are others ways you can help too. See the website for more details.

MLS

New York City FC took care of business tonight, knocking off Sporting KC 1-0 with a late go-ahead goal by Jack Harrison in the 84th minute.

The win gives NYC FC a glimmer of hope in the Supporters’ Shield race where they are now just six points behind juggernaut Toronto after 27 matches each.

The result retains the status quo in the West with the Sounders still clinging to a one-point lead over Portland and a lead of two points over the Sporks, who now have only one game in hand over Seattle.

In other Sporting KC news, the club will not be signing former Sounder and Martinique Gold Cup standout, forward Kevin Parsemain. It’s complicated, but in essence France nixed the Sporting KC request for an International Transfer Certificate transfer by Martinique. The Blue Testament has the full story.

The problems for Orlando FC continue. Midfielder, and former Timber, Will Johnson has been suspended by MLS pending investigation after he was arrested on a domestic violence charge of misdemeanor battery.

USA

After the USMNT’s late draw against Honduras and Panama’s win against Trinidad and Tobago, it is clear that the U.S. men, now fourth in the CONCACAF Hexagonal, have little remaining margin for error if they, and Coach Bruce Arena, want to punch their ticket to the World Cup. ESPN analyst Paul Carr still gives the U.S. a 69% of qualifying after Tuesday night’s match though based on strength of remaining schedule.

SBNation offers seven takeaways from the Honduras match.

Five Thirty-Eight doesn’t mince words on the USMNT’s progress in the Hex: asserting that the team has been “bungling” its way through the tournament and accomplishing only the “bare minimum” needed in what will be seen as the “worst modern qualifying campaign” for the team. However they offer some thoughts on what went wrong and how to fix it.

World

It seems like just yesterday when we were talking about MLS Deadline Day 2017. Over in the Premier League the BBC reports that FIFA has rejected Leicester City's deal for the acquisition of midfielder Adrien Silva from Sporting Lisbon because Leicester missed the registration deadline for submitting all required paperwork by 14 seconds.

Finally, in UEFA World Cup Qualifying, FIFA is investigating incidents involving German DFB supporters during Germany’s qualifier at Czech Republic. Bavarian Football Works reports on the unsavory details.

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