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Friday Freedom Kicks

News from Monaco, Orlando, Vancouver, and more.

Former RSL striker Yordany Alvarez
Former RSL striker Yordany Alvarez
Bob Levey

As we wait for news as to whether or not D.C. United have signed Fabian Espindola, check out this morning's links from around the world of soccer:

World Cup - Monaco confirm Falcao ACL injury, Brazil 2014 hopes fade - Yahoo Eurosport UK

Monaco confirmed today that Colombian striker Falcao will need surgery on his left knee. The news isn't good for what hopes Colombia had in this summer's world cup, but's Simon Borg seems to think it could open the door for loaned out Seattle Sounder Freddy Montero, who could step up for Colombia in the scenario that Falcao would miss the World Cup.

Ambitious Orlando City SC ink Yordany Alvarez to MLS contract | ProSoccerTalk

Orlando traded its lowest 4th round SuperDraft pick in 2017 to acquire Cuban striker Yordany Alvarez from Real Salt Lake. Alvarez has spent the last two seasons with RSL and will be on loan to Orlando from RSL in their final season outside of MLS.

I mean, the New York Knicks tried to trade their 2019 draft pick, who says Orlando can't trade their 2017 pick?

Red Bulls snag veteran Spanish defender Armando | ProSoccerTalk

It's not Xavi, but the Red Bulls acquired a player with Barcelona connections, signing Armando. The former captain of Barcelona’s B side is headed to join our hated rivals to the north and while the details of the deal haven't been released yet, but it appears the Red Bulls are determined to improve their back line this off season.

Juan Mata set for Manchester United medical - ESPN FC

Chelsea and Manchester United come closer to an agreement to send Spanish forward Juan Mata to Man U. He is expected to make his debut for Man U on January 28.

Whitecaps enter affiliate partnership with USL Pro's Battery

Just after Toronto FC announced their partnership with the Wilmington Hammerheads, the Vancouver Whitecaps have announced their partnership with USL Pro's Charleston Battery.

Canada planning to bid for 2026 World Cup | Soccer By Ives

Our neighbors to the north have decided to enter their name in the bidding for the 2026 World Cup.

Barcelona president steps down amid Neymar transfer lawsuit - Soccer -

From the Sports Illustrated article:

"I don't want unfair attacks to negatively affect management or the image of the club. This is why I think my time here has come to an end," Rosell said, while insisting for a second time this week the deal to bring Neymar to Barcelona was legal.

Report: Philadelphia Union president Nick Sakiewicz en route to England to finalize Maurice Edu deal |

Looks like Maurice Edu may end up in Philadelphia after all.

D.C. United news and notes

Steven Goff's news and notes for our beloved club from the past few days.

Feel free to use the comment section as an open thread for all soccer related topics.