Happy Wednesday Friday! My thanks to Annie for covering on Wednesday so that I may count MLS kit representation at Tuesday night’s All-Star Skills Challenge (I think the total was 18 MLS teams). There’s a lot of soccer going on today, so let’s get right to it!

MLS grades heading into Leagues Cup: Can your team win it all? (MLS): The Leagues Cup begins tonight D.C. United’s foray into the new tournament starts on Wednesday, but their group competition, Montreal and Pumas, play their match tomorrow. What are their chances of getting out of the group? MLS writer Joseph Lowery gives his grades for MLS teams heading into the tournament (D.C. got a B here).

USWNT World Cup camp report: Rookies leaning on veterans (ESPN): The Leagues Cup is an ambitious tournament combining the top leagues of two nations. That’s child’s play to what’s going on in New Zealand right now as the Women’s World Cup is in full swing. Groups A and B have already concluded their first round of the group stage. The United States (Group E) start their World Cup tonight against Vietnam at 9:00 PM.

Why Crystal Dunn has to play left back for the USWNT (Pro Soccer Wire): Jason Anderson takes a deep dive into Crystal Dunn’s fluid position and how the USWNT will try to utilize her skills.

Vancouver Whitecaps trading Julian Gressel to Columbus Crew: Sources (The Athletic): Julian Gressel is on his way back to the East Coast Eastern Time Zone.

Challenge Cup Preview: North Carolina Courage vs. Washington Spirit (NWSL): The World Cup doesn’t put a pause on NWSL Challenge Cup action as the Spirit challenge the Courage tomorrow night at 7:00 PM.

The Annapolis Blues won their conference championship, but their postseason journey still has a lot of potential. They face off against West Chester United this afternoon at 4:00 PM.

If they win the East Region, the NPSL playoffs continue.

Meanwhile, the Best XI for the NPSL Mid-Atlantic Conference is out, and there is a lot of local representation. The Blues have four players and the head coach. Virginia Dream (Arlington) has two players on this list, and the Alexandria Reds add another. That’s 7 players out of 11 for the DMV.

That’s all for this morning, but most definitely not all for the rest of the weekend! Get kicking in the comments!

ByKerry Hess

Contributing Author for The District Press

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Will Nelson

Apparently some of Rooney’s staff that helps with filming games and high level analysis got moved by Apple employees: https://theathletic.com/4707018/2023/07/20/wayne-rooney-apple-mls-all-star-game/ at least that’s what Rooney claims.


Because the rest of you won’t search this… Annapolis Blues players on the Best XI:

Jacob Murrell — had the sublime volley in the 96th minute to send last Saturday’s playoff match to Extra-Time periods. Also had the clinching shootout goal. From Forest Hill (north of Baltimore), High School star at McDonogh, where he won Gatorade National Player of the Year Award, and a rising sophomore at Georgetown (the type of player DCU Academy might attract when/if our MLS Next Pro team arrives in Baltimore region).

Griffin Hemmendinger — Goalie — A very large-framed young man. Saved two PKs in the shootout. Norfolk product, playing Div 3 at Mary Washington.

Matias de Jesus — Baltimore Celtic alumnus, now a rising sophomore at UMD. Only played in one match last year.

Elton Santos — appears to be a 37 y.o. Brazilian who’s spent a decade or so in mid-Atlantic, playing for lower level and indoor teams.

Quite a mix.

Last edited 4 months ago by Fischy
Bryan McEachern

Cool stuff! Thanks! Go Hoyas!

David Rusk

Hooray! In honor of the Women’s World Cup, DP resurrects the female, ponytailed icon. I was going to suggest that.

How about a standard practice of alternating the male and female icons depending upon which club has a forthcoming home match?


I like the pony tail version a lot—maybe articles that focus on the Spirit could default to the pony tail header image as well.

Brendan Cartwright

Thomas Floyd is reporting that Palsson likely indeed is on his on his way out. I went over yesterday why I think that’s probably the best move.

Talonesque #

I’d say long term, but the question remains, is anything long term with this current management? On top of that, CAN they be long term with the lack of credit they’ve got with the fans, even if the intention is there, which I’d argue it isn’t? I could elaborate forever on this, but the point is, I don’t think there was ever a plan, except for real estate.

Brendan Cartwright

The Lucy Rushton hire hinted at a plan (use data!). Signing Taxi and Flores hinted at a plan (sign DPs that were entering their prime that proved themselves in a couple of leagues).

Then that all went to hell because Dave Kasper never really relinquished the reins, and they had to panic hire Rooney and it just became “sign players Wayne likes.”

The terrible part of all the long-term planning is that you can basically bank on Kasper still being there.


Eupen in the Belgium First Division from the reports

Stunned Duck

Well, there goes the season.

Multiple sources have confirmed that Fountas allegedly directed a racial slur at Robertha, who then assaulted him.

I like to give people second chances. I don’t like to give them third chances. And, while we’re filling out the paperwork to get Taxi on the next plane out of here, it might be a good opportunity to put Dave Kasper on “administrative leave” for overseeing all of this.

Talonesque #

Without knowing the extent of the attack, I hope Robertha finds a way through this. Fountas… what a disgrace. To be welcomed back, to be given the benefit of the doubt, to celebrate goals with his teammates, and to still be this person, well, he’s got no integrity. Realistically, he’ll find a landing spot, I hope it’s as seedy, low paid, and unsatisfactory as possible.


Robertha being suspended is probably required while they investigate – he’ll be welcomed back once they get the pieces together.

Taxi… he’s done. This happened so fast there’s no way it was a “misunderstanding.” There’s likely a way for them to terminate the contract for cause and even bring in another player if KDP isn’t healthy enough to start.

Talonesque #

You’re probably mostly correct about the situation, but it really depends on what he did to Taxi, for the organization to be able to comfortably move past it. It should surprise no one here to hear that I am willing to forgive Robertha quite a bit, I just don’t know if the organization has that latitude. So, we’ll have to wait and see.

Matt Glad

Welp. I was certainly one of those who gave Fountas the benefit of the doubt the first time. There’s really no other way to interpret what happened this second time. Just tear it all down and start over. New FO, new coach, new players. This team wasn’t making the playoffs anyway. Get new people in there, install a culture and give it time to mature. This just takes the little joy I had for this team away.

Matt Glad

I’d like to add “new owners” to that as well. For all the spending they’ve done, they haven’t implanted any semblance of a culture or set of standards for this club. This sort of thing is embarrassing for the club and the fans who defended Fountas after the first incident, have been cheering his name, and wearing his jersey.

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