Three Big Storylines:
- Friday night MLS is back! At least for this week as the Philadelphia Union host Orlando City SC Friday night on ESPN, MLS schedulers are taking advantage of a gap in ESPN’s regular programming calendar with the NBA playoffs starting tomorrow and thus no NBA game tonight. In addition, our neighbors to the North follow up the East Coast game with a late night MLS match featuring the Vancouver Whitecaps hosting Los Angeles FC (7 PM, ESPN+). LAFC is on a two game losing streak and have given up nine unanswered goals in 120 minutes of play since taking a 3-0 lead over the LA Galaxy on March 31st.
- RIP MLS Live. After leaning on MLS Live to write and comment on this column for four years running, MLS Live is no more. It has been replaced by ESPN+. Although the condensed game feature (it’s really good, you should check it out if you have not) is reportedly going to live on in the MLS Live environment. ESPN+ will be live for MLS games starting this weekend, the cost is $4.99 per month and includes USL coverage (like S2) as well as out of market MLS games. There is a 30 day free trial you can sign up for here. In order to sign up you have to add a credit card or paypal account and will be charged after the 30 day free period expires. You will also have to remember your long lost ESPN.com account and password from that fantasy league you joined 15 years ago (or create an account) in order to log in.
- Univision and the free twitter stream of the week have a great matchup as the LA Galaxy take the Zlatan Ibrahimovic show on the road for the first time as they visit the Chicago Fire on Saturday (details below). Toyota Park in Bridgeview will feature a rare sell out as former Manchester United teammates Zlatan and Bastian Schweinsteiger take the field as opponents. With the Fire recently switching to a three man backline and deploying Schweinsteiger in a sweeper role, expect to see the two stars matchup quite often. Reigning MLS Golden Boot award winner, Nemanja Nikolic, is off to a hot start for the Fire in 2017 with four goals from four played.
From a Sounders Point of View:
Only one team in MLS has zero points. That team also has only played three MLS games and has THREE games in hand over the Western Conference current first and second place teams coming in to the weekend. But that team just needs to get some points on the board and not worry themselves overly much about the happenings around the league for a couple weeks. That team is the Seattle Sounders.
National TV Listings:
Philadelphia Union v Orlando City SC
Date/Time: Friday, 5:00 PM
Streaming: Watch ESPN
Chicago Fire v LA Galaxy
Date/Time: Saturday, 12:30 PM
Sporting Kansas City v Seattle Sounders
Date/Time: Sunday, 1:00 PM
Streaming: Watch ESPN
We’ll have a separate gamethread for this. Full coverage is here.
Date/Time: Sunday, 6:00 PM
TV: Fox Sports 1
Streaming: Fox Sports Go
This is your Sounder at Heart MLS Weekend Week 7 open gamethread. Watch with us.