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Major Link Soccer: Svenssonisms and Waterslides

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MLS: D.C. United at Seattle Sounders FC Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Seattle

Watch new Sounders midfielder Magnus Wolff Eikrem talk about his time with Manchester United Academy and Malmö FF in a short interview with Steve Zakuani. Magnus Wolff Eikrem sits down with Zakuani to discuss his beginnings

From his wry sense of humor to his honest and down-to-earth take on keeping soccer in perspective, there is more to Gustav Svensson than his play on the pitch. Gustav Thoughts: Ponder life with five Svenssonisms

As you have read, the Sounders have been down in Tucson, training and getting in some preseason matches. But it wasn’t all work!

The Sounders’ Nouhou Tolo is one of the five best players, aged 20 or younger, to watch during the 2018 CONCACAF Champions League. SCCL 2018: Five young footballers to watch.

Major League Soccer

This offseason has already seen a flood of new talent to MLS: More than 70 players from 32 countries, including 23 who were either born in South America or represent a South American national team, have joined the league. MLS Newcomers to Debut in 2018 Average Under 25 Years of Age.

Chicago Fire have acquired 27-year-old Serbian midfielder Aleksandar Katai on loan from La Liga side Deportivo Alavés. Katai’s production with Alavés was modest, but the year before with Red Star Belgrade he was the leading scorer in the Serbian SuperLiga with 21 goals. In his 68 games with the Serbian side, he scored 31 goals and earned 15 assists. Chicago Fire Soccer Club Acquires Serbian International Aleksandar Katai on Loan from Deportivo Alavés.

DC United is continuing to move pieces less than a month before their home opener. We already heard the big news: The team from the Other Washington have acquired Oniel Fisher to help fill out their back line. But it looks like they are also very close to finishing a deal with a number of moving parts to bring on Argentine midfielder Amil Asad from Atlanta United. D.C. United awaits Yamil Asad deal, acquires Oniel Fisher from Seattle Sounders.

Sporting KC has signed a DP: 27-year-old Felipe Gutierrez from Real Betis in La Liga (although he was on loan in Brazil for much of 2017). Sporting KC signs Chilean international midfielder as a Designated Player.

The Sporks’ newly opened Pinnacle facility is a beauty. Take a look. Sporting Kansas City unveil state-of-the-art Pinnacle training facility.

LAFC signed 23-year-old midfielder and Canadian International Mark-Anthony Kaye from 2017 USL champions, Louisville FC. LAFC Acquires Mark-Anthony Kaye.

The Timbers have renewed their sponsorship deal with Alaska Airlines. The Seattle-based airline has been the team’s jersey sponsor since the Timbers’ inaugural MLS season in 2011. Timbers, Alaska Airlines announce renewal of jersey sponsorship.

Toronto FC look to be seriously preparing for CONCACAF Champion’s League in advance of their first match against Colorado. The Reds are in Mexico City for altitude conditioning and some high quality friendlies against Liga MX sides Club America, Pachuca, and Cruz Azul. Toronto FC embark on preseason trip to Mexico as quest for CCL trophy looms.

As was rumored to be pending last week, Toronto have signed 29-year-old Dutch international Gregory van der Wiel from Italian Serie A club Cagliari. Toronto FC sign Dutch international Gregory van der Wiel.

United States

From March 1-7, U.S. Soccer will host the third annual SheBelieves Cup, an elite four-team tournament featuring the U.S., England, France and Germany. Unfortunately, none of the matches will be held on (or near) the West Coast. Five Things to Know About the 2018 SheBelieves Cup.

ESPN Plus is Disney's first foray into a direct-to-consumer streaming service. But don’t get too excited. If you want programming from the existing ESPN TV networks it will require a subscription to an existing service that offers those channels. ESPN's streaming service will cost $4.99.

World

Matt Miazga, Alfredo Morales and Keaton Parks scored, while Christian Pulisic, Antonee Robinson and Heather O'Reilly set up goals. Americans abroad: three goal scorers, three goal providers.

Bayern Munich is the only major Bundesliga team training in Qatar, and doing so despite the country’s shocking human rights record and the blowback the team has suffered. Bavarian Football Works digs into why. Bayern Munich and Qatar: a marriage of inconvenience.

On the 60th anniversary of the Munich Air Disaster, The Independent covers the incredible story of how the decimated team persevered and eventually won the 1968 European Cup. Manchester United's journey from Munich to Wembley might well be one of sport's greatest ever stories.

Stories of marquee players bouncing around La Liga and other top divisions, chasing better teams and bigger deals, makes the life of the footballer seem pretty sweet. The reality is that players who aren’t in the top tier are likely to be plagued by job insecurity, have little control over where they live and who they play for, and may have to uproot their lives and families on short notice. The dark side of the transfer window sees players powerless over moves.

Mauricio Pochettino says Dele Alli deserved to be booked for diving against Liverpool, but the Tottenham manager has no problem with tricking refs. Is VAR good for the sport? Tottenham manager Pochettino defends Alli says tricking refs part of game.