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MLS teams in CCL action, Black History month stories, and expensive scarves: Freedom Kicks for 2/20/18

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Also, Stieber goes to Vegas!

Hello all from sunny Florida. One more sleep until D.C. United’s third preseason game, a tilt against the Jacksonville Armada. Conor Doyle recently signed for the Boys in Blue, so with any luck, we will get a chance to see how the former Black-and-Red player is doing, after spending the 2017 season with Puerto Rico FC.

We should have a couple of interviews posted in the next couple of days. Yesterday, I talked to David Ousted and Yamil Asad, two newcomers to the squad this year. So be on the lookout for those. Now for today’s links:

First things first: Today is the first competitive game for MLS teams this year. The league doesn’t kickoff for another 10 days or so, but the Colorado Rapids (yes, the Rapids) host Toronto FC in the first leg of their Round of 16 match up in the CONCACAF Champions League. The weather is going to be terrible. Which should make this game even more intriguing. Here is a preview from the Burgundy Wave, as well as Waking the Red predicting TFC’s lineup.

Our fellow United friends down at Dirty South Soccer have an interesting look at the secondary scarf market for Atlanta United. The gist — it’s crazy. I like collecting scarves, though I am very uneven in when I pick them up. But I’ve only ever paid retail for a scarf. Some of these folks are spending a pretty penny to add to their collection.

One of the biggest soccer stories from yesterday was that Wigan Athletic knocked out Manchester City of the FA Cup in England. It’s the third time in three tries that Wigan have beaten City in the FA Cup. The 1-0 win led fans to rush the field, which caused a couple of confrontations. City forward Sergio Aguero was caught on camera pushing a fan away, which didn’t seem too outlandish, though some people are claiming that he punched the fan.

If you haven’t been following along with our Donald Wine II’s Black History Month series over at Stars and Stripes FC, then here is a link to catch up with all of them. Yesterday, Donald had two pieces. The first, is centered around Puma, and their efforts ahead of the 2010 World Cup. I remember the African Unity jersey, and how well thought out that idea and execution were.

The second piece from Donald yesterday hit a bit closer to the D.C. United home, as it recalled when United became the first team in league history to be owned by a majority of minority owners. Victor MacFarlane and Brian Davis became the first African-American owners in league history, while Will Chang became the first Asian-American owner in MLS. For a league that has struggled with diversity above the player level, this was quite the breakthrough back in 2007.

Lastly, here is a picture that Zoltan Stieber shared on Instagram yesterday:

#nemzetisport #interju #valogatott #dcunited #stibi18 #mindensarvaronkezdodott

A post shared by Zoltan Stieber (@stieberzoltan) on

Yes, the cover is focused on Stieber going to Las Vegas. If you want to read it, here is the link to the article. The Google translation isn’t perfect, but you can ascertain what the interview is about. A couple of interesting tidbits in there, especially when Stieber talks about this offseason being the longest of his career (thanks to United missing the playoffs).

That’s all I have today - what are you all talking about today?