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D.C. United preps for more Capital Cup, Washington Spirit news, MLS & NWSL moves, and more: Freedom Kicks for 7/9/2021

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Caitlin Buckley / Black and Red United

I’m writing this while the sun’s still out yesterday as a safeguard against a power outage from the remnants of a tropical storm brushing past Maryland and dumping about 2” of rain around these parts in the next few hours, which is something I just love and definitely do not dislike. Anyway, we have some D.C. United and Washington Spirit news to report, so let’s get right to it:

First off, the DCU community lost Marshall O’Connor to cancer last week. If you can, please click through to the gofundme to help his family:

United is going to field a pretty strong team in Sunday’s Capital Cup match against Alianza FC:

While that still means being without some regulars (Paul Arriola, Donovan Pines, Kevin Paredes, and Moses Nyeman among them), we’ll still have an easier time predicting the lineup than we did on Wednesday. No word yet on whether that means no Loudoun loanees, but given that they have a game Sunday, it seems likely that there will be few if any.

The latest episode of Julian Gressel’s Zee Soccer Podcast is up, and it’s in part a chat about United’s 7-1 win over Toronto FC. Remember, how they won 7-1? People forget that D.C. United beat Toronto FC 7-1.

Speaking of District-based players podcasting...

Olympics Special ft. Katie Nolan | Just Women’s Sports
...Kelley O’Hara’s podcast is back, with Katie Nolan as a guest and the Olympics as the topic. And we have even more player-created content:

Kumi Yokoyama and their partner have started a Youtube channel. Should be fun, even if my Japanese language skills

I can still speak English, though, and I did just that in the latest episode of Plex Weather:

Washington Spirit waive Natalie Jacobs, add Taylor Aylmer and Morgan Goff | Black and Red United
The Spirit made some moves yesterday, letting Natalie Jacobs go and adding two national team replacement players in Taylor Aylmer and Morgan Goff.

Angel City FC targeting Sean Nahas for first head coach: Sources | The Athletic
The big news elsewhere in NWSL yesterday is that Angel City FC appears to be zeroing in on NC Courage assistant Sean Nahas as their head coach. Nahas has a solid reputation around the league, but ACFC fans were given a lot of reason to expect a woman head coach, and were letting the team hear it yesterday. We’ll see what course the club takes.

Orlando Pride Sign Forward Jodie Taylor | The Mane Land
Former Spirit striker and still England striker Jodie Taylor has signed with the Orlando Pride. It’s an interesting move that Orlando seems to have been planning for a while, and at least during the Olympics, it adds some experience (if also a tendency to run offside a lot) for them. Not sure how it’s gonna go once Alex Morgan and Marta come back, but that’s a future problem.

CF Montréal receives $200,000 in General Allocation Money in return for Erik Hurtado |
The quote in here about why this trade went down is very revealing: Montreal effectively felt they had to trade Hurtado because he’s not vaccinated against Covid-19 and not going to get vaccinated, so with the Canadian clubs getting close to their return to playing at home, getting him into Canada was going to be more or less impossible.

Alright, I’m finishing up here with some music: Portishead released their cover of ABBA’s song “SOS” on Soundcloud, with both the band and the platform donating to a UK-based mental health charity. Good song (I would love to watch a movie that this song belonged in), good cause.