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Freedom Kicks for 18 April 2014: The Dykstra of Columbia

Things that are really hot this week: Andrew Dykstra, Greek tifo, and World Cup-ulation.

Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

Is DC United back? Has the gelling and the clicking actually begun? Or do we just beat below-average teams when they're having particularly bad days at RFK? We'll find out this weekend at the stadium with the scoreboard that blows up sometimes.

Columbus Crew vs. DC United | MLS Match Preview | Here's the main thing you need to know about the Crew -- they have been defeated this season, but they are undefeated away from home. Tomorrow, they play at home. Understand? Do you feel a smile spreading across your face? I thought so. Congrats. You just passed your LSAT.

Three years after last start, Andrew Dykstra seizes long-awaited chance in goal for DC United | As a backup (to a backup), Andrew Dykstra has exceeded my wildest expectations (clean sheet after two games? no way!). And Olsen holds him up as a prime example of "this Richmond situation" -- i.e., giving playing time to guys who need more development. But let's see him stop a penalty kick in a playoff game after the starting goalkeeper is unexpectedly sent off with a red card.

Goalkeeper Andrew Dykstra steps in for United and delivers a pair of shutouts - Washington Times: Everybody is loving on Dykstra. Can he make it three shutouts in a row? If he does, I think DC and Dykstra will need to get a room.

Is D.C. United a playoff-caliber team? | Washington Post: "Here are the reasons why that may or may not be the case," says the author. Good grief. Pick a side. We all know the answer. It is yes. Yes, DC United is playoff-caliber. If the clicking and the gelling all happen whilst the individuals themselves play to their full potential, DC United will be in the 2014 playoffs. The talent is there. They just have to want it.

Intense Short Week for Columbus Crew | Soccerly: Some more previewing of the Crew. They're going to eat each other alive with their intra-team competitive spirit. That is all I hear about. How they push each other. So maybe it's time for some psychological warfare. What seemingly innocuous thing would you say to a Crew player on the field to get him to turn on one of his teammates?

Don't Cross the Line 2014 PSA | The newest PSA features EJ.

Brazil players banned from having 'acrobatic' sex during World Cup - I can't think of anything snarky to say about this. So here are my pointers for those partaking during World Cup: (1) Everyone - whether you play for Brazil or not - should use due care. (2) One person's "acrobatic" may be another person's "normal." (3) If your mind wanders and you find yourself thinking about whether Luis Felipe Scolari would approve, you're doing it wrong. (4) For god's sake, stop thinking about Scolari. (5) Seriously, you gotta refocus.

Paok - Olympiakos toumpa 16/04/2014 - YouTube: Some serious pyro tifo in the second leg of the Greek Cup between PAOK and Olympiakos.

Brendan Rodgers: Liverpool must heed warning signs - I spent Wednesday afternoon in a bar drinking pint after pint and having many LMAO moments watching Man City barely eke out a draw with Sunderland, while getting updates on Everton's knee-slapping loss to Crystal Palace. (I'm a Liverpool fan.)

Finally, if you're easily grossed out, don't watch this soccer vine.