Lion Links

Lion Links: 4/27/23

Orlando City’s transfer window grade, U.S. Open Cup’s third round concludes, Brenner transferred to Udinese, and more.



Image courtesy of Orlando City SC / Mark Thor

How’s it going, Mane Landers? It’s been a pretty busy week for me, but I’ve also had reason to celebrate since my car is officially paid off! It’s a pretty good feeling and I’m looking forward to using some of that money for a few more trips to Exploria Stadium each season. But enough about me, let’s dive right into today’s links from around the soccer world.

Orlando City Earns Decent Grade for Transfer Window

With the primary transfer window over and done with,‘s Jonathan Sigal handed out grades for how each MLS team fared. Orlando City was one of 15 teams to receive a B grade. Acquiring Martin Ojeda as a Designated Player and drafting Duncan McGuire has already paid dividends for Orlando, as those two have a combined five goals and three assists this season. Keeping Pedro Gallese in purple was also a crucial move for the Lions. However, fullbacks Joao Moutinho and Ruan are no longer in Orlando and their replacements are still finding their footing. St. Louis City and LAFC received top marks for their moves, while CF Montreal, Sporting Kansas City, and the New York Red Bulls received the lowest grades.

U.S. Open Cup’s Third Round Wraps Up

The final matches of the U.S. Open Cup’s third round were packed with drama in the south. In Florida, Miami FC scored early and Inter Miami struck late in a thrilling contest that needed more than 90 minutes to decide a winner. After an own goal from DeAndre Yedlin in extra time, Inter Miami found another equalizer to send the game into penalty kicks. Former Lion Kamal Miller converted the winning spot kick as Inter Miami advanced. Orlando’s other rivals weren’t so fortunate. Atlanta fell 2-1 to Memphis 901 FC, which scored off of a penalty kick in stoppage time and won with another goal in extra time. It was the earliest the Five Stripes have been eliminated from the tournament. Meanwhile, the Tampa Bay Rowdies lost 1-0 to the visiting Houston Dynamo.

Other MLS clubs survived by close margins, with FC Cincinnati, D.C. United, Nashville SC, and the Columbus Crew all beating their lower-division opponents in 1-0 results. Orlando City joins the fray in the next round, with the draw for that set to take place today at 2 p.m.

Brenner Officially Transferred to Serie A’s Udinese

In a move that was first reported earlier this month by CBS‘s Roger Gonzalez, FC Cincinnati has officially transferred Brazilian forward Brenner to Udinese for a reported transfer fee of $10 million. That fee would be a club record for Cincinnati, which acquired Brenner from São Paulo FC in 2021. Brenner has scored 27 goals in 72 appearances across all competitions for Cincy, including six game-winning goals. The 23-year-old’s last match with Cincinnati before heading to Italy will be on July 1 at TQL Stadium.

Manchester City Takes Control of EPL Title Race

In a pivotal English Premier League match, Manchester City beat Arsenal 4-1 to put itself in the driver’s seat of the title race. Kevin De Bruyne had two goals in the match, with Erling Haaland assisting on both before he scored in stoppage time. Although Arsenal still sits atop the table, Manchester City is now just two points behind with two games in hand.

Liverpool won 2-1 against West Ham to keep hope alive that it can claim a spot in next year’s Champions League or Europa League. Chelsea’s woes continued in a 2-0 defeat to Brentford. The Blues have lost all five games with Frank Lampard at the helm so far. Near the bottom of the table, Nottingham Forest beat Brighton & Hove Albion 3-1 to climb out of the relegation zone for now. There are more matches today, including a showdown between Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur.

Free Kicks

  • Enjoy these photos of high-flying Lions as they get ready for this weekend’s home match against the LA Galaxy.
  • In the Concacaf Champions League semifinals, the Philadelphia Union and LAFC played to a 1-1 draw at Subaru Park. A handball on Kellyn Acosta gave the Union a late penalty kick, which Daniel Gazdag buried. Acosta responded in stoppage time by pouncing on a loose ball and making a nice run into the box to score a crucial away goal. The second leg is on Tuesday at BMO Stadium.
  • AC Milan is reportedly interested in signing American midfielder Tyler Adams, who is currently injured while Leeds United fights to avoid relegation.
  • Charlotte FC forward Karol Swiderski won Goal of the Matchday for his game-winning strike against the Columbus Crew.
  • St. Louis City named Diego Gigliani as its president and general manager. Gigliani has spent the past 10 years with City Football Group and will join the MLS club this summer.
  • Inter Milan booked its spot in the Coppa Italia final after beating Juventus 1-0. Federico Dimarco scored the game’s only goal. In next month’s final, Inter will take on whichever club advances between Fiorentina and Cremonese.
  • Spanish midfielder Alexia Putellas could make her return from injury in Barcelona’s Champions League semifinal match today against Chelsea. Barcelona won 1-0 in the first leg, and Chelsea will be without English defender Lucy Bronze due to a knee injury.
  • Sheffield United secured promotion to the English Premier League after a 2-0 win over West Bromwich Albion.
  • Fortuna Dusseldorf, which plays in Germany’s second division, has plans to make home games free for fans next season.

That’s all I have for you today. I’ve been enjoying the flurry of sports this week and am looking forward to seeing Orlando’s soccer teams in action this weekend as well.


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