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Freedom Kicks: D.C. United, USMNT, and MLS links for Wednesday May 4, 2016

Steve Birnbaum, Jordan Morris, and the man who will inadequately coach both of them this summer

Almost forgot to set this up to publish. Let's talk about soccer!

D.C. United news and notes | Soccer Insider
Key here is Dave Kasper saying D.C. United is not interested in selling Steve Birnbaum. That's great news! He is probably going to ask for a raise, but he's earned it.

In a weekend with 30 goals, the biggest star in MLS was a backup goalkeeper | SB Nation
Takes here! Get your takes!

Columbus Crew SC set to add Panamanian midfielder Christian Martinez |
Probably not an impact signing, but the Crew are looking into signing a 19 year old right midfielder/right back on loan from Chorrillo FC.

Nerding Out: Creating the Jordan Morris character | Sounder at Heart
Dave Clark wrote about Jordan Morris. Or Dungeons & Dragons. Or Star Wars.

Same as it ever was: Left back always a problem for U.S. men | FourFourTwo USA
This is painful reading, as left back has been a problem forever for the USMNT. Also, there's an easy solution out there: Jorge friggin' Villafaña! Jurgen! He plays in a league you clearly watch!

Instead, El Sueño was left out of the preliminary squad of 40 because the USMNT is a Kafkaesque nightmare.

3 things we learned from Atlético Madrid's away goals win over Bayern Munich | SB Nation
Atletico Madrid are on their way to the Champions League final after a pretty wild 2-1 loss at Bayern Munich was good enough to

Leicester City’s title triumph: the inside story of an extraordinary season | The Guardian
Some pretty good stuff in here. Also, a reminder that sometimes top-class athletes are asked to get into a box that blasts them with -135 degree temperatures.

FIFA must follow through with plans to create the Women’s Club World Cup | Unusual Efforts
Considering that the little nonprofit that could, FIFA, has billions and billions sitting around, they could get this off the ground.

Diana Matheson scored twice, on the road, to lead a team that people are merely fairly confident will make the playoffs to a 3-0 win. She scored 40% of the goals in this week's 5 NWSL fixtures (somehow, the 10 teams only combined for 6 goals). Kim Little is great, but this is a travesty.

Down to the wire for Bradley | Yanks Abroad
A quick wrap of what Bob Bradley and Le Havre face in their pursuit of a spot in Ligue 1 next season.

‘More Than Mean’ Roundtable: Female Sportswriters Speak Up About Online Harassment | Think Progress

"...we need men to actually listen and believe us when we talk about the abuse we suffer, and not to reflexively jump to reactive doubt."

An important read on how women writing about sports get treated, and how "not all men" is missing the point.

Life after death in Juarez: Soccer returns to a city damaged by narco violence | Vice Sports
Robert Andrew Powell wrote a whole book on soccer in Ciudad Juarez (I own it, it's very good), and he went back to check in on Los Bravos de FC Juarez, the city's new team.

Alright I'm done. Let's have fun out there.