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Croatia to World Cup final, D.C. United to Audi Field, and more: Freedom Kicks for 7/12/2018

All that plus last night’s Washington Spirit game

Steven Streff

Hey folks! It was a pretty busy day in the soccer world both MLS, NWSL, and World Cup wise. Here’s what’s up!

As D.C. United opens Audi Field, some of its best-known fans remain bitter about ticket policy | Washington Post
The dispute between D.C. United, the Barra Brava, and the District Ultras has no end in sight.

Audi Field brings home the growth of soccer in the Washington area | Washington Post
Here’s a sunnier column from Thomas Boswell on the new stadium.

And here’s a peek at the locker room:

D.C. United trades Patrick Mullins to Columbus Crew - Black And Red United
Because the new stadium and new Wayne Rooney aren’t enough, how about a trade? Patrick Mullins is off to Columbus in exchange for $150,000 in TAM.

Filibuster podcast: D.C. United opens Audi Field - Black And Red United
This week’s show looks back at the mixed bag in LA and the new stadium.

NWSL leading North Carolina Courage too much for Washington Spirit | Black And Red United
Somehow the Washington Spirit’s 2-0 loss to NC doesn’t feel too bad because 8-0 was also an option.

Aubrey Bledsoe’s big save was the play of the night on Sportscenter:

Croatia vs. England result: Final score 2-1, Mario Mandzukic sends his team to 2018 World Cup final | SBNation.com
Croatia is going to the World Cup final after coming back from an early 1-0 deficit. They’ll take on France on Sunday.

Look at these photos taken by the photographer who was nearly crushed by the pile of celebrating Croatian players after Mario Madzukic’s game-winning goal:

Stejskal: Chicago Fire permanently acquire Aleksandar Katai from Alaves | MLSsoccer.com
Chicago Fire officially acquired Aleksandar Katai yesterday afternoon. He was already on loan, but by waiting until now to make his move official, they kept a Designated Player spot open.

That’s it folks!