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D.C. United vs. San Jose Earthquakes, Washington Spirit thoughts, and more: Freedom Kicks for 4/30/2021

Lots of DCU interviews, plus some connections to the past and a King Kazu update

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Caitlin Buckley / Black and Red United

Good morning! I have an unhealthy breakfast, I’m a little late getting to this, and without further adieu, let’s talk about D.C. United, the Washington Spirit, and other soccer teams who were written about on the internet yesterday.

Hernán Losada and Felipe Martins talked about tomorrow’s game, which is really tomorrow and Sunday’s game because it will start at 11pm Eastern. The San Jose Earthquakes pose a unique test for United, in that they’ll be the first team that is arguably trying to be even more abrasive to play against than the Black-and-Red.

Q&A: Paul Arriola on his ‘frustrating’ loan to Swansea, evolving USMNT role and D.C. United’s new look | The Athletic
Paul Arriola talked here about his injury recovery (including how it relates to United’s new fitness requirements) and the situation at Swansea.

Andy Najar is back home with D.C. United but still on the road back to full strength | Washington Post
Andy Najar saying that coming back to DCU was coming home? Yup, into it!

These four D.C. teams finally won on the same day. They could do it again Saturday. | Washington Post
If you’re going to place a small, just for laughs kind of bet, this is a fun one. The covid schedule shifting means we’re in for a lot of weekends that are overstuffed with DC sports.

This would be an immense move for the Spirit. Bunny Shaw is leading the French top flight in scoring despite not playing for either of the two clubs that are even remotely NWSL-caliber, and should already be a huge star. Her next move is probably the one that takes her up to that level, which is why we’re talking Man City or “incredible, insane” offers from NWSL clubs.

Of course, this is also a longshot (I’ve heard that the move to Man City is very close), but this is the kind of player the Spirit should be pursuing.

Six things about the Washington Spirit’s 0-0 draw with Gotham FC | Black and Red United
In the meantime, we’ve got some varied thoughts on Tuesday’s game. The Spirit have a few days off before they start their prep for the regular season.

Here’s former United homegrown midfielder Collin Martin discussing being an openly gay pro athlete and the value of allyship.

Staying local, we have some unfortunate news about former Richmond Kickers player/coach David Bulow:

If you have the means, please consider chipping in to help the Bulow family out.

Oakland Roots did it again, with the rare jersey involving a gradient that I actually like. That’s not to say I want to encourage more gradients (this is that one 45-yard shot that went in all season, not a sign of things to come), but I am impressed that someone made it work.

Let’s wrap up with some Kazu Miura news: King Kazu played as Yokohama FC won a J-League Cup match over Kashiwa Reysol:

That’s the good news. The bad news is that Kashiwa is the only team Yokohama has beaten in 2021, and both of those have been cup matches. In the league, they have 2 points from 11 games, and are already 9 points from safety.

Alright, that’s it. Don’t get swept away in today’s weird gale-force winds!