Happy Friday! I am finally over my cold and looking forward to getting out and enjoying the warm weather this weekend. Until then, there’s plenty of local soccer news to chat about.
D.C. United’s Ted Ku-DiPietro scored a game-winning goal for the US Youth Men’s National Team against Honduras in the Pan American Games. With 3 points, the Men are now 2nd in their group and face Colombia on Sunday for a chance to move on to the semifinals.
The USWNT tied Colombia 0-0 in a friendly that showed how little they’ve changed since exiting the World Cup in August. Trinity Rodman was a highlight, as always.
Goalkeeping coach Diego Restrepo is leaving D.C. United after two seasons “to move on to [his] next challenge.” No word yet on what, if anything, Restrepo has lined up for his next gig.
In other (potential) departure news, the Washington Post warns Donovan Pines could be leaving the club for Europe. Pines will be a free agent at the end of the season, and his agent told the Post he is talking to teams both in the MLS and overseas. United say they would like to keep Pines in D.C., but it seems they might be having trouble negotiating without a GM or head coach in place.
MLS announced finalists for their year-end awards yesterday. Former Black-and-Red player Luciano Acosta is up for MVP, against Thiago Almada and Dénis Bouanga. Meanwhile, there’s apparently some grumbling about Messi being a finalist for Newcomer of the Year despite only playing in 6 matches.
Finally, fan voting for NWSL end-of-season awards ends at 12 p.m. Washington Spirit’s Sam Staab is up for Defender of the year (although Paige Metayer was ROBBED in the Rookie of the Year category). Please see this highlight video for reasons why you should go vote for Sam immediately. (Not pictured: her absolute cannon of a throw-in. Get this woman on the USWNT.)