If I had an intro, I'd put it here. I don't have one though, because I'm bad at intros and it's late, so...
In pursuit of free agency, players could challenge MLS as single entity | Sports Illustrated
Normally I lead with D.C. United news, but it's probably best to start with this comprehensive look at the legal angles involved in a potential MLS work stoppage. This is the most "must read" post on the topic that I've seen. Pour yourself a cup of coffee first, as it's a doozy.
D.C. United news and notes | Soccer Insider
The only news here that we haven't covered is that United's friendly against Orlando City will apparently be streamed by MLSsoccer.com at 7pm Friday. Take that, social life!
D.C. United Preseason Report: Florida Day 4 | DCUnited.com
Down in Florida, the team used a different sport to get their blood flowing, and Bobby Boswell was instrumental in a nice moment for academy product Eryk Williamson.
Fabián Espíndola le dijo no al extranjero y prefirió seguir en DC United | PELOTAZOS | FutbolMLS.com
This is a wide-ranging interview in Spanish with Fabian Espindola. He talks about United's negotiating style, Jaime Moreno, and his suspension. Here's the Google Translate version in English, which is close enough that you can get the gist.
Alfonso Quesada apunta a la titularidad en el arco Alajuelense para la Concacaf | Teletica.com
Down in Costa Rica, Alfonso Quesada appears to have the edge in LD Alajuelense's search for a goalkeeper to start against United in the CCL. Normal starter Patrick Pemberton is going to sit a few times in league play so his back-ups can audition for the job. Obligatory Google Translate link.
Report: Red Bulls Complete Trade for Felipe | Once A Metro
Felipe and the top allocation spot go to the Red Bulls, so we get the rare treat of a well-established lowlife joining the team made for people like him. The Metros plan on using that allocation spot to sign Sacha Kljestan, who will take over the spot vacated by Eric Alexander (who goes the other way in this trade). Montreal will also get allocation money, an international roster spot, and Ambroise Oyongo. That's where things get interesting: Oyongo wants to play in Europe, and has drawn some real interest while playing in the African Cup of Nations. If Montreal pulls a Kasper-style flip here, they're going to look pretty smart (for once) even after letting a conference rival improve in central midfield.
Speaking of which, the Impact will have to find a way to accommodate Alexander, Marco Donadel, Patrice Bernier, and Nigel Reo-Coker in the engine room. Oh, and Calum Mallace too. So there's that.
Impact trades for Dominic Oduro from Toronto FC | Mount Royal Soccer
Busy day up in Quebec. Oduro will probably end up playing more as a forward due to the Impact's lack of depth there, but we'll see. Also, this is the 7th team Oduro has played for, which is absurd.
Expanding Major League Soccer’s playoffs is a terrible idea | Soccer Gods
Steve Davis is not wrong here. In terms of purely soccer reasons, the case for letting 12 MLS teams make the playoffs is weak.
Juan Román Riquelme was whatever you want him to be | SB Nation
Kevin McCauley takes a good look at the many sides of Juan Roman Riquelme, who has decided to hang up his boots. Pay special attention to the section on the 2007 Copa America, which is kinda-sorta where Brazil did what was done to them in the 1982 World Cup.
Juan Roman Riquelme: The master of his art will be missed by Argentina | ESPNFC
More Riquelme? You're damn right. Tim Vickery takes a look back at Riquelme's career, which about a decade ago was peaking in majestic fashion. If you're the kind of person that believes a team should always make room for a traditional, playmaking #10, seeing Riquelme retire has probably inspired more than a little sadness. Here's the goal Vickery mentions at the end of his piece.