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Loudoun United schedule release, NWSL gains an Ally, and more: Freedom Kicks for March 31, 2021

And it’s a “United Day.”

Courtesy of Loudoun United FC

Happy Wednesday, folks. It’s the last day of March 2021, which felt just like an extension of March 2020, but so have the months that fell between them. There’s a D.C. United preseason match tonight against New York City FC at the home of the Philadelphia Union. However, United won’t be streaming the match because...well, we don’t know. Show the’s not that hard.

Anyway, to the news:

Loudoun United releases full 2021 schedule - BRU

Loudoun United will remain in their Eastern Conference pod for most of their matches this season, with two trips west of the Mississippi: at New Mexico United and at Rio Grande Valley FC. It’s a 30-game schedule, and we’ll see if the team can do much better than it did last season.

NWSL Welcomes Ally as League’s First Official Banking Partner, League-Wide Sleeve Sponsor - NWSL

Ally becomes a featured sponsor and official banking partner of the NWSL. They will find themselves on the sleeve of every jersey this season, and they will establish a fund for the players where Ally will directly pay them some of the sponsorship fees they owe the league.

SSFC Podcast, Episode 47: USMNT U-23s fail to qualify for Olympics - SSFC

Not making the Olympics was an abject failure for the USMNT U-23s, and I discuss why on the latest SSFC Podcast.

Five things that led to US Olympic qualifying failure - MLS

Charles Boehm also provides his take on what went wrong in Guadalajara.

Why does putting WSL games in big stadiums feel so hollow right now? - All for XI

The WSL is putting more matches in the big stadiums, which is great in some regard. But, why do it now when no one’s able to attend?

Landon Donovan: Ending discrimination in football the goal for SD Loyal team who walked off - BBC

Landon Donovan speaks with the BBC about his San Diego Loyal refusing a result in one match and walking off the field in another match because of discrimination against his players, including former D.C. United Homegrown Player Collin Martin.

The best and worst MLS kits of all time: Galaxy, Sounders epitomize the good and the bad - ESPNFC

Bad news: D.C. United did not have a single jersey listed on the best MLS kits of all time list. Not even the 1998 home or away or even the Cat in the Hat.

Worse news: DCU’s 2017 secondary jersey (some refer to it as the Ninja Turtle) topped the list of worst MLS kits of all time, which is a crime in a league full of plain white tees.

That’s all for today. Stay dry and Vamos!