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Injury updates for D.C. United, Washington Spirit news, and more: Freedom Kicks for 7/13/2021

It’s not great news for United, but it could have been worse?

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Caitlin Buckley / Black and Red United

Good morning! I cursed my entire day by going to bed very early for me, but waking up so early as to undo any positives of that healthy choice. We have D.C. United and Washington Spirit things to talk about, so let’s talk about them so I can go back to figuring out when I’m going to have to take a nap:

Distinctly mixed bag here, as Brendan Hines-Ike has picked up a hip injury that might keep him out a while. Paul Arriola, meanwhile, is apparently doing alright, though the fact that he went from being built up by United to immediately having an issue under someone else’s watch feels...not great.

D.C. United to play Alianza FC Wednesday, July 14 |
It appears that United is satisfied with Alianza’s protocols after they had one announced Covid-19 positive in their camp, and the abandoned friendly from Sunday is now back on for Wednesday, which was originally when these teams were going to play only for that version of the game to be moved up to Sunday, then cancelled and replaced with another United-Alajuelense match.

This entire series of friendlies makes me feel like I’m thinking about the implications of the movie Primer. Anyway, I’ll be in the building tomorrow night.

Is Venezia a good spot for Tanner Tessmann, what’s up with D.C.’s Andy Najar experiment, how do the Sounders keep Soundering, and more listener questions | MLS Assist
I haven’t had a chance to listen to this episode on Andy Najar playing as part of United’s back three (among other things), but it’s at the top of my podcast list for the day.

Spirit Technical Staff Coach Carrie Kveton Departs for Elitedivisionen side FC Nordsjælland |
The Spirit made two announcements yesterday. First up, assistant coach Carrie Kveton is taking a post in Denmark.

Washington Spirit and CVS Health Announce Sponsorship Renewal for 2021 |
The second is that the Spirit have renewed their sponsorship deal with CVS Health, which as you’ve probably noticed by now includes the latter’s name on the Spirit’s shorts.

NWSL refereeing under fire again; Sydney Leroux’s stunner, plus more from the weekend’s action | The Athletic
The highlights of this weekend in the NWSL included the overall quality of the Spirit’s performance.

USA vs. Haiti, 2021 Gold Cup: What we learned | Stars and Stripes FC
It’s not a Gold Cup until the USMNT has one shrug-worthy 1-0 win.

Copa America ends with 179 confirmed cases of COVID-19 | Seattle Times
That’s 179 cases in people directly involved in the tournament: teams, staff, referees, CONMEBOL employees, and so on. CONMEBOL even had the gall to present this as a good outcome, rather than, you know, obviously reckless.

The racism aimed at Bukayo Saka, Jadon Sancho, and Marcus Rashford was not a surprise | The Short Fuse
The racist abuse England’s Black players received after the Euro 2020 final was abhorrent, of course, and also something that plenty of people knew would happen if England didn’t win. It’s a sad state of affairs in a sport that seems completely unable to address its racism problem.

Alright, that’s about it. I’m going to throw in a recommendation of the movie Possessor, which came out last year. Not for the squeamish at all (I think most of the comparisons of director Brandon Cronenberg to his father David are a little facile, but not in this particular department), but every bit as good as the film nerd hype.