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Around The Forest: VAR would have ruled out ‘Hand Of God’ goal says Diego Maradona

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D.C. United is having a hell of a time, Carli Lloyd takes to globetrotting and much more!

Portland:

Timbers' Jeremy Ebobisse runs with opportunity in victory vs. Whitecaps | MLSsoccer.com
Last offseason, Portland Timbers coach Caleb Porter said one of his roster goals was to fill each position three deep, with at least one of those players being under 23.

Major League Soccer:

From coast to coast, D.C. United caps a week to forget with loss to Houston Dynamo - Black And Red United
With Managing General Partner Jason Levien in attendance, D.C. United had the opportunity to erase all the bad memories from Wednesday night’s debacle. Blowing a three goal lead and losing to the Seattle Sounders was an opportunity wasted, but United were finally back home, facing a Houston Dynamo team that had not won on the road all season.

North American sports culture helping MLS clubs buy into analytics - ESPN FC
To start out the 2017 season, D.C. United scored just four goals in their first six games. Worse, head coach Ben Olsen's boys were shut out four times. Under normal circumstances, this lack of production would have been cause for concern.

VAR would have ruled out 'Hand of God' goal, Maradona admits | FourFourTwo
Diego Maradona has thrown his backing behind the introduction of the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) and conceded the system would have seen his "Hand of God" goal against England ruled out.

Owner outlines plans for S.F. soccer team - San Francisco Chronicle
There are so many options for entertainment in the San Francisco Bay Area market that it’s hard to think there is a void. Especially in the sports world. But Nick Swinmurn, the founder of Zappos.com and owner of the Burlingame Dragons soccer team, says there is one and he hopes to fill it in a couple of years.

Kei Kamara demonstrates why all MLS fines should be appealed via Twitter videos - Howler Magazine
New England Revolution striker Kei Kamara, who has long been one of MLS’s best personalities, was recently fined $1,250 by the league for wearing unapproved socks during matches.

D.C. has spent too much time fighting fires under Olsen, current ownership to truly grow - ESPN FC
Sometimes a draw can feel like a loss. And sometimes a loss can feel like it goes deeper than the events of the day or a short-term run of form; instead, it says something more essential, more fundamental, about a team and its problems.

Polak: Breaking down the top coaching moves of Week 20 | MLSsoccer.com
Each week, Sam Polak breaks down the top coaching moves in MLS from the previous week. Here are his top five from Week 20.

United States:

Still a U.S. women's soccer team fixture, Carli Lloyd embraces globetrotting life
Carli Lloyd’s life over the last seven months reads as much like a travel novel as it does a news story from the sports section. Since she got married last November, soccer has taken her to six countries, plus a full complement of American cities, with her club team and the U.S. national team.

Johan Cruyff: the American diaries
Johan Cruyff’s impact on football was far-reaching to say the least. His influence on the game in the Netherlands and Spain has been rightly lauded, and his role in the revolutionary Total Football of the 1970s and his moments of incomparable brilliance on the pitch are incomparable. Few would dispute that Cruyff was more to Dutch football, to European football, than simply a world-class player.

Fabian Johnson talks limited USMNT schedule, possible international retirement after 2018 World Cup - Stars and Stripes FC
In a preseason interview with German outlet Bild, Borussia Monchengladbach and United States international Fabian Johnson says he’s open to the possibility of retiring from international competition after the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

SoccerAmerica - USMNT: 'The kid from Nacogdoches' feels great 07/24/2017
Clint Dempsey said it was like a dream come true: tie the U.S. national team record for career goals held by Landon Donovan in a big game with his 57th all-time goal clinching Saturday's 2-0 win over Costa Rica in the Gold Cup semifinals before a big contingent of family. But it was even sweeter, given what he's had to overcome

Jesse Gonzalez goes with heart, switches from Mexico to US
Jesse Gonzalez started in the 2015 Under-20 World Cup for Mexico, his parents' homeland. Then last month, the 22-year-old FC Dallas goalkeeper switched his affiliation to join the United States, his home country.

World:

Javier Hernandez may be West Ham's best-ever signing - David Sullivan - ESPN FC
West Ham joint chairman David Sullivan has told talkSPORT he believes new signing Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez could be the best player ever to join the club.

Liverpool's Jurgen Klopp: I'm not interested in what Jose Mourinho says - ESPN FC
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has said he is "not interested in what Jose Mourinho says." Manchester United boss Mourinho, who guided his team to a Europa League win last season, suggested Liverpool and Chelsea would find it difficult to juggle the demands of domestic and European action next season.

A French mayor has eaten a rat after losing PSG-Barcelona bet | FourFourTwo
Following PSG’s 4-0 win against Barcelona in the first leg of last season's Round of 16, Mont-de-Marsan mayor Charles Dayot said on Facebook that he would eat a rat if Barcelona managed to knock out PSG.

A/V

For those that might have missed RSL coach Mike Petke’s epic rant. Here it is.