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Major Link Soccer: Playoff pandemonium

It’s postseason time in American soccer.

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SOCCER: JUN 18 NWSL - Chicago Red Stars at Kansas City Current Photo by Nick Tre. Smith/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Playoffs are in the air, even if a chill isn’t just yet. MLS and NWSL both started their playoffs over the weekend, with plenty of drama for all involved. Liverpool and Manchester City squared off in what has become one of the Premier League’s marquee fixtures, and despite drastically differing fortunes so far this season Liverpool took all three points at Anfield. Jurgen Klopp did get a red card, though, so it wasn’t all sunshine and ribbons. In other rivalry news, El Clásico saw Real Madrid give Barcelona the business, presumably as retribution from on high for Barcelona directly tying themselves to Drake with their jersey sponsorship.

Seattle/Washington

[Last week] the new ownership group for USL Spokane, led by Ryan and Katie Harnetiaux through Aequus Sports, LLC, introduced itself to the community prior to a viewing party at Brick West Brewing for the England-USA women’s international friendly match. New USL Spokane Ownership Introduced to Community

The Huskies battled back to claim a point in PAC-12 competition against Oregon State. Huskies Erase Two-Goal Deficit, Earn 2-2 Draw vs. Oregon State - University of Washington Athletics

Seattle U came back to beat Utah Tech 2-1, with Peter Kingston and Declan McGlynn both assisting on the equalizer. Bedats Brace Lifts Redhawks - Seattle University

OL Reign were rewarded for an outstanding season with four finalists for end of season awards. Harvey, Cook, Huerta and Tullis-Joyce Nominated for 2022 NWSL Awards — OL REIGN: WE ARE THE BOLD

MLS/Domestic men’s soccer

The USL Championship regular season has ended, and so one final power ranking is in order. The Twenty-Seven: Final Power Ranking!

A distinctly Seattle flavor to the USL Championship regular season champs.

Wilfried Nancy has instilled a system and an ethos that requires a price from players, but with everyone bought in the results are inarguable. How Wilfried Nancy's CF Montréal became an MLS Cup Playoffs contender | MLSSoccer.com

First playoff appearance, first playoff win, could this FC Cincinnati side be ready for their first MLS silverware on this run? Playoff hero Brandon Vazquez: FC Cincinnati capable of "winning it all" | MLSSoccer.com

Playoffs are, more than anything else, pain, as any Seattle sports fan will remind you after this weekend. 10-man RSL drops to Austin FC in penalties - RSL Soapbox

Having knocked off Nashville SC, LA Galaxy are now rewarded with a playoff match against their noisy neighbors. LA Galaxy advance, will face LAFC in MLS Playoffs on Thursday - LAG Confidential

NWSL/Women’s soccer

Over the past 13 years, Sam Kerr’s trajectory has paralleled the rise of women’s football. Now she’s a finalist in the Ballon d’Or, world football’s most prestigious individual award. This dataset traces her evolution from nervous teen to goal-scoring superstar. How Sam Kerr became one of the greatest strikers in women's football - ABC News

Kate Del Fava and AD Franch, along with the rest of their teammates, provided just enough to tip the scales against Houston and a record-setting crowd. Kate Del Fava plays hero for Kansas City in stoppage time – JWS

There’s a chance that San Diego Wave collect a whole host of awards for an incredible season, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see OL Reign well represented when the trophies are handed out. NWSL awards: Picking a front-runner in every category – JWS

“All you can do is just do your best, work as hard as you can and see where it takes you. Hopefully, we can inspire people to want to play along the way.” Nottingham Forest Women hope for record 10,000 crowd for Derby game at City Ground - The Athletic

USA

Mia Bhuta has the world at her feet, and despite her age, often looks ready to take the burdens of the world upon her shoulders. Mia Bhuta's week: Rapinoe's message, inspiring Indian girls and a wonder goal for USA

The confusion presumably stems from a misunderstanding, because Jeff Plush probably thinks books are for nerds, and so would actively avoid an “open book.” USA Curling stands by CEO Jeff Plush despite NWSL abuse report

Folarin Balogun seems set for a bright future, one that is surely going to continue to tantalize USMNT fans until he’s finally cap-tied to one of his three potential senior national teams. Reims striker Folarin Balogun keeping USMNT option open

Malik Tillman is doing his best to take advantage of his opportunities as he pushes for a place at the World Cup. USMNT’s Tillman scores solo goal for Rangers vs. Motherwell

Global men’s soccer

Conditions restrict where international broadcasters, including BBC and ITV, are permitted to film. Qatar World Cup accused of imposing ‘chilling’ restrictions on media | World Cup 2022 | The Guardian

England and Chelsea right back Reece James looks like to miss the World Cup due to a knee injury. England star James to miss World Cup with injury

Maybe this is the moment that it all changes, as Liverpool claim a well-earned 3 points at home over Manchester City. Digging Deeper Into Liverpool’s Wild Win Over Manchester City - The Liverpool Offside

Klopp was understandably upset, but you just can’t interact with an official like that. Klopp Explains “Probably Deserved” Red Card - The Liverpool Offside

Monterrey are the first Liga MX team to secure a spot in the Liguilla semifinals after a dominant win over Cruz Azul. Liga MX 2022 Apertura Liguilla Quarterfinal match recap: Monterrey disposes of Cruz Azul 3-0, books ticket to the Semifinals - FMF State Of Mind

This game probably belongs on the Mason Mount Rushmore, right? Potter ‘delighted’ with the three points against Aston Villa, Chelsea’s collective desire, suffering - We Ain't Got No History

Real Madrid took sole possession of their place at the top of the table with a statement Clásico win. Six stats from Real Madrid’s 3-1 Clásico win over Barcelona in LaLiga - Managing Madrid

Sergio Busquets clearly remains in Xavi’s plans, but that’s in direct opposition to God’s Plan. Barcelona has no choice but to move on from Sergio Busquets - Barca Blaugranes

Why have there seemingly been so many issues with goals being the wrong size recently?

What’s on TV today?

9:30 AM - Sampdoria vs. Roma (Serie A) - Paramount+

11:45 AM - Lecce vs. Fiorentina (Seria A) - Paramount+

12:00 PM - Villareal vs. Osasuna (La Liga) - ESPN+

4:00 PM - RB Bragantino vs. Santos (Brasileirão) - Paramount+

4:00 PM - NYCFC vs. Inter Miami (MLS) - Fox Sports 1

6:30 PM - FC Dallas vs. Minnesota United (MLS) - Fox Sports 1

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