Lion Links

Lion Links: 8/9/23

Alejandro Granados joins Club Brugge, Orlando Pride take on Gotham FC in final Challenge Cup match, Orlando City B faces Revolution II tonight, and more.



Image courtesy of Orlando Pride

Hello, Mane Landers. I hope all is well with you down in Florida. I’m doing well and getting ready for a busy weekend working both the Bruce Springsteen and Pink concerts at Wrigley Field. Let’s all wish a happy birthday to Orlando City defender Alex Freeman. There is plenty to cover today, so let’s get to the links.

Alejandro Granados Transferred to Club Brugge

Orlando City B midfielder Alejandro Granados was transferred to Club Brugge in Belgium for an undisclosed fee, although earlier reports regarding this move had it around $2 million. Executive Vice President of Soccer Operations and General Manager Luiz Muzzi gave insight on Granados’s move to Europe.

“We are very grateful for all that Alejandro has given throughout his young career to our club,” Orlando City EVP of Soccer Operations and General Manager Luiz Muzzi said. “Although we are sad to see him go, this move showcases the great work we’re doing within our Academy and OCB to develop players and ready them for exciting opportunities such as this. We wish Alejandro nothing but the best in this future.”

The 17-year-old made 26 appearances for OCB and one appearance for the senior team. During his time with Orlando City’s academy, Granados helped win a 2021 MLS NEXT Cup title and also earned a spot on the MLS NEXT All-Star Game in 2022.

Orlando Pride Take on Gotham FC in Final Challenge Cup Match

The Orlando Pride will close out their 2023 NWSL Challenge Cup campaign tonight on the road against NJ/NY Gotham FC. The match will kick off at 7:30 p.m. at Red Bull Arena and you can watch it on Paramount+. This will be the fourth time these two sides meet across all competitions this season. The Pride lost their last Challenge Cup match this past Friday 1-0 to the Washington Spirit, despite generating 25 shot attempts. The Pride are already eliminated from advancing to the knockout round and will push to get their first win in this year’s competition. Gotham FC sits in second in the East Division and would need a win to advance to the knockout round. After tonight, the Pride’s next match will be in league play at Exploria Stadium when they face the Chicago Red Stars on Aug. 20.

Orlando City B Faces New England Revolution II Tonight

Orlando City B will also be in action tonight, as it takes on New England Revolution II at Osceola Heritage Park. The match starts at 6 p.m. and you can watch it on OCB looks to get back to its winning ways after losing a penalty shootout to Inter Miami II following a 1-1 draw in its last match this past Saturday. New England also lost a penalty shootout after a 1-1 draw this past weekend, with New York Red Bulls II getting the extra point. A player to watch in tonight’s match is forward Jack Lynn, who is tied in the MLS NEXT Pro Golden Boot race alongside Atlanta United 2’s Nick Firmino with 12 goals. OCB defender Imanol Almaguer also notched his second assist in the past three matches against Inter Miami II this past weekend. The Young Lions sit in fifth place in the Eastern Conference with 34 points and have a quick turnaround after tonight’s match, as they go on the road to play New York City FC II this Sunday.

Leagues Cup Quarterfinals Are Set

The round of 16 of this year’s Leagues Cup concluded on Tuesday, with five teams claiming their spot in the quarterfinals. Following a thrilling 2-2 draw with Club America, Nashville beat the Liga MX side 6-5 in the penalty shootout. Minnesota United also beat its Mexican opponent in a shootout, eliminating Toluca to advance. LAFC dominated Real Salt Lake, scoring all four of its goals in the second half to win 4-0. Monterrey converted a late penalty for the game’s only goal in a 1-0 win over Tigres. The Philadelphia Union also ousted the New York Red Bulls in a shootout.

The quarterfinals start on Friday, with the Union hosting Queretaro, Inter Miam playing Charlotte FC, LAFC taking on Monterrey, and Nashville facing Minnesota.

Colombia, France Advance to World Cup Quarterfinals

Two more teams punched their ticket to the quarterfinals of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup as the round of 16 concluded. A second-half goal from Catalina Usme was enough to help Colombia edge out Jamaica 1-0 to advance to the quarterfinals for the first time. Meanwhile, France cruised to a 4-0 win against Morocco to make it to the quarterfinals for the third consecutive time. Eugenie Le Sommer found the back of the net twice, while Kenza Dali added one and Kadidiatou Diani scored her fourth goal of the tournament. France will take on host Australia, while Colombia faces England in two early morning Saturday matchups this weekend.

Free Kicks

  • Check out this video from the Orlando Pride introducing Rafaelle.

That will do it for me today, Mane Landers. Enjoy your Wednesday and I’ll see you next time.


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