Normally we like to start Freedom Kicks off on a fun note, but we have some bad news today. D.C. United’s Paul Arriola posted this message on Instagram last night about the passing of his father:
On behalf of the site, I want to extend heartfelt condolences to the entire Arriola family. Keep them in your thoughts today.
United to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month with “Noche Latina” at Audi Field | DCUnited.com
Here’s what’s on tap for Saturday’s game. United will have Spanish-language announcements, and as I said after the Olimpia friendly, those should be a permanent fixture rather than a one-off.
Speaking of friendlies, Pablo Maurer broke some news:
#DCU have been in talks w/EPL sides to schedule a summer friendly next year. Big names are being batted around - including Liverpool - but Everton seems the most likely candidate given the Rooney connection & relatively low $ investment.— Pablo Maurer (@MLSist) October 11, 2018
Congrats to Everton fans. Personally I’ll wait until the schedule comes out before I have much of a reaction. Hopefully it’s during a bye week and not a mid-week game in the summer.
Frederic Brillant adjusting to life in U.S., playing with D.C. United | Washington Times
Would you be surprised if I told you that Frederic Brillant is excited to be playing with Wayne Rooney? Well, he is.
D.C. United versus FC Dallas preview, plus the escape against Chicago: Filibuster | Black and Red United
This week’s Filibuster mulled over an imperfect win over Chicago, and then talked about the somewhat unorthodox but very effective FC Dallas side that comes to town tomorrow.
Will FC Dallas’ defense lead the way? | Big D Soccer
United’s major task tomorrow: breaking down one of the best defensive teams in MLS without giving away chances to counter. Down in Texas, they’re confident enough in that defense that they’re talking MLS Cup prospects.
Shifting gears to the Washington Spirit, I joined the good folks from Follow Your Spirit to look back on the miserable season that was 2018. My computer crashed while I was mid-answer (I’m taking it as a revolt against any further discussion of this past season), but I rallied to get back on and finish the show:
Follow Your Spirit officially transitions from season to offseason with a discussion on MVP, team awards, possible candidates for head coach, and more. @jols98 and @TimothyJLawson are joined by @chestrockwell14 for our first podcast of the offseason https://t.co/ILbveDnMlI— Follow Your Spirit (@SpiritCoverage) October 11, 2018
Mallory Pugh and Rose Lavelle Look For Redemption After Disappointing Spirit Season | Washington City Paper
A reminder that despite the horrors of 2018, the Spirit roster does have some real talent. Rose Lavelle and Mallory Pugh are doing work for the USWNT in qualifying, and Sunday night they’ll be playing Jamaica (shock qualifiers out of group B) for a spot at France 2019.
USA vs. Colombia, recap: Colombia flexes their muscles on the young yanks | Stars and Stripes FC
On the USMNT side of the coin, amid talk of “identity” still (still!) being undefined, the United States was outplayed throughout the first half, somehow came back to take a lead early in the second half, but were then trounced by Colombia.
The broadcast of the game carried more underwhelming news:
After all this time, they’re likely hiring someone they could have hired last fall, and they’re steering right into more charges of nepotism (Gregg Berhalter’s brother Jay is one of the most powerful people within the USSF). They’re also not hiring a much better coach for a language barrier that is apparently not being applied for English speakers who can’t also speak Spanish.
Berhalter is a good coach who will probably have no trouble steering the USMNT into Qatar 2022, but if you’re looking for the hire that takes the program up a level (or even just reinvigorates interest in the fanbase)...well, keep looking.
This Tim Weah assist will make you a believer | Stars and Stripes FC
At least Tim Weah was good.
Tim Weah’s Potential, Ambition Evident in and After USMNT’s Loss to Colombia | Sports Illustrated
He’s also a good quote, which we probably don’t have enough of in American soccer.
Another deadline passes as PSV still has not reached a deal with Austin | Massive Report
Tuesday opened the door for either cartoonish villains PSV or the city of Austin can bail on this terrible idea to move the Crew. That’s not to say that they will, but the option is there.
Authorities charge 5 in Belgian soccer corruption case | AP
Things are bad enough in Belgium that the entire 2nd division is postponing this weekend’s games, and title contender Club Brugge’s head coach was brought in for police questioning.
That’s it for me. Be good to each other, and don’t forget a jacket.