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A D.C. United owner’s famous friend, a world class soccer player is stupid & more: Freedom Kicks for 12/18/17

A random and slightly melancholic tone to the links.

Hulu Upfront Brunch - Arrivals Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Hulu

Hi there. Hey, bring on the out of office emails!

D.C. United passes on 2017 MLS Re-Entry Draft’s first stage (us): Kind of surprising to be honest. Guessing Dave Kasper and Ben Olsen will pick a bunch in Round 2 Thursday so that contracts can be better negotiated as opposed to grabbing them willy-nilly. Guessing they will get 8-10 more guys total, 5 of whom will get them to the senior roster minimum, fluid stuff.

Sorting out the Top 10 most important moves in Week 1 of the trade window (MLS): Analysis!

2018 MLS Mock Draft (Draftopia): A update for everyone else but not DC, and I missed the second round pick last time.

Kaká Announces Retirement (The Mane Land): Boy, bye.

Griezmann's blackface photo sparks social media controversy (NJ Herald): The tweet and inflammatory photo aren’t in the post and you can find them elsewhere I’m sure, but what on earth was Atletico Madrid (and France) forward Antoin Griezmann thinking?

US Office star is among Swansea City owners (BBC Sport Wales): It’s been about 16 hours since I learned of this, and I still don’t comprehend it, but want to see a shot about it now. At least it will distract a little from this optic.

Hounds sign two former Rhinos (DK Pittsburgh Sports): The way his tweets made it sound initially, former DCU player Christiano Francois would be returning to the team, perhaps on a preseason invite deal, but it’s really just going to the Pittsburgh Riverhounds instead.

Ken Krieger joins Fredericksburg FC as Girls Director of Coaching (Soccerwire): The (brief) former Academy coach and father of then Washington Spirit (and United States) and current Orlando Pride defender Ali Krieger left to go to Arlington and now this.

Inter beaten 3-1 at home (Serpents of Madonnina): In partner club news on the field, Inter Milan finally suffers its first loss of the year, this to Udinese. Combined with Napoli and Juventus winning, Inter goes from first to third, with four points separating 1st through 4th place Roma currently.

Houston (The Players Tribune): Stuart Holden almost single-handedly put together the charity game held at the home of his hometown club Houston Dynamo Saturday night for those affected by Harvey and racked in from than $300,000 in donations. If you can, donate.

‘We are with him 24/7, talking to him, praying for him’ (The Guardian): An emotional, must-read update on former Ajax player Abdelhak Nouri from his family.

Carrie Coon Reached The Peak Of Peak TV In 2017 (Uproxx): The common thread in two very good shows this year (Fargo and The Leftovers) was this marvelous actress, which if you saw neither show this season, please do and cry your eyes out, it’s the holidays after all.