With the first full week of training camp about to happen, these are the happy days, the salad days as they say. So on with the links:
Perry Kitchen, Steve Birnbaum Break Camp With U.S. Team for Upcoming Friendlies - Black And Red United: ICYMI, we got a reason to watch the winter friendlies!
Parsing a USMNT lineup for January’s Camp Cupcake friendlies | The 91st Minute | Soccer Blog | Videos | Pop-Culture: Related to the "Perry Kitchen, defender" thing that is still a thing, the possibilities of a three man backline are explored.
USA beats El Salvador, 2-0, to qualify for U-20 World Cup - Stars and Stripes FC: And the Baby Yanks did...enough to move on.
D.C. United-Sunderland partnership could impact Buzzard Point stadium - Washington Business Journal: An interesting look on what the partner clubs may have in mind for one another, particularly for the former's stadium. And speaking of partner clubs:
Sunderland 0-0 Fulham: Stalemate at the Stadium of Light - Roker Report: The Black Cats survive Jack Rodwell's sending off to keep Fulham scoreless leading to a scoreless draw during FA Cup action. At least they're consistent.
Match Report: Inter 0-1 Torino – Stunned at the death - The Offside Inter Milan: Meanwhile, Emiliano Moretti scores a goal in the throes of extra time for Torino to beat Inter Milan, keeping the latter in ninth, tied with...AC Milan.
MLS CBA negotiations: Players set on free agency - Planet Futbol - SI.com: So, is free agency and busting single entity in the process the hill the Union dies on?
MLS and free agency: Fatal brinksmanship? | SportsMyriad: Or is it worth fretting over?
Real Salt Lake Media Deal A Game-Changer For MLS - MLS Multiplex: Part of this may be because the success of RSL in the small market is reason to look at things for other clubs, but this is a pretty interesting deal. D.C. United's is in the last year of a three-year deal with CSN Washington, by the way and if memory serves.
The best and worst value contracts from every MLS team | The 91st Minute | Soccer Blog | Videos | Pop-Culture: An interesting look at bargains and overpayments in the Lig, even if D.C. United's are pretty easy to identify.
Size-mic Shift: The growing disparity in the size of drafted players vs. Homegrown players | MLSsoccer.com: Matt Doyle with an interesting look at signings vs. draftings of late.
Time to re-think the MLS draft system | College Soccer: Meanwhile, Travis Clark thinks things could use a different approach, draft-wise.
Report: Cosmos closing in on MLS vet, Canadian international Attakora - Empire of Soccer: Word that Nana Attakora may be going to New York to ask Alecko Eskandarian about his turkey sandwich mantra.
Standard Liege fans make epic tifo of Steven Defour, then Defour gets red card - SBNation.com: I like tifo as much as the next person but I mean, did anyone at Liege READ the news over the weekend before kickoff?
Behind the Scenes at the MLS SuperDraft with Orlando City SC | THE WORD | MLSsoccer.com: Andrew Wiebe with a great look into what Orlando City SC were angling for...
Orlando City Soccer's Chick-fil-A and gay problem | Blogs | Orlando Weekly: ...but they keep shooting themselves in the foot with missteps like this.
Orlando City's Bromance: Luke Boden and Lewis Neal - The Mane Land: Worth clicking through for the pic of Lewis Neal, but not worth it if you pine for the days of Lewis Neal I guess.
The night Eric Cantona went into the crowd at Selhurst Park - ESPN FC: A nice look at one of the more surreal moments in EPL memory.
An Oral History Of The Creation Of FX’s ‘Justified’: On the heels of the show's seventh (and final) season premiere, a look at how it came to be. A 100 words or less summary of the show is Elmore Leonard writes about Kentucky. Forgive the oversimplification, but the dialogue in the show continues to be brilliant and that alone is a reason to watch.
Remember if you're out shoveling today...don't overdo it.