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Around The Forest: San Jose Earthquake’s Matheus Silva wakes from coma

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David Villa and the Chicago Fire take home a fair share of midseason awards from ESPN FC and more.

Portland:

New swimming beach opens next week in Portland | KGW.com
Soon the city of Portland will have a brand new swimming beach. Poet's Beach marks the city's first designated swim area on the Willamette. It officially opens to the public on July 12.

Gold Cup | A tournament preview as David Guzmán, Alvas Powell and Darren Mattocks get set to play in 2017 edition | Portland Timbers
Portland Timbers players David Guzmán (Costa Rica), Alvas Powell (Jamaica) and Darren Mattocks (Jamaica) are all set for the 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup which kicks off Friday, July 7 with two matchups at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, New Jersey.

Major League Soccer:

2017 MLS All-Star Fan XI presented by Target headed by hometown stars | MLSsoccer.com
The fans have spoken. Hometown heroes Bastian Schweinsteiger and Nemanja Nikolic will be hanging around Chicago for the 2017 MLS All-Star Game presented by Target, voted in to the 2017 MLS All-Star Fan XI, announced Friday by the league following a month-long online fan ballot. The match, against Spanish giants Real Madrid -- the reigning UEFA Champions League winner, will take place August 2 at Soldier Field (9 p.m. ET | FS1, UniMás; TSN, TVA Sports).

Armchair Analyst: Contenders, the Hunt & all 22 MLS teams by tier revisited | MLSsoccer.com
Let's tip the cap to the great Zach Lowe, whose annual "Tiers of the NBA" column was/is the inspiration behind this one. The first edition of my "Tiers of MLS" take ran back in winter, back when it was clear that FC Dallas, Toronto FC, Seattle and the Red Bulls would utterly dominate this season

San Jose's Matheus Silva emerges from coma after Tahoe swimming accident - ESPN FC
The San Jose Earthquakes say Matheus Silva has emerged from a coma, two days after the Brazilian defender was rescued from Lake Tahoe. Silva, who was playing this season for Reno 1868 FC, struggled while swimming at a Fourth of July gathering. He was pulled from the water by teammates and bystanders but was unresponsive and did not have a pulse.

David Villa and Chicago Fire clean up in ESPN FC's MLS Midseason Awards - ESPN FC
At the halfway mark and following a 2016 that often felt stale and predictable, this campaign has exceeded hopes that it could be a breakthrough for the league. With spending up, rosters are as talented as ever, and that has been evident week in and week out on the field.

Chicago Fire's Bastian Schweinsteiger sets return from hip injury for July 22 - ESPN FC
Bastian Schweinsteiger has said he expects to play in the Chicago Fire's July 22 match against New York City FC after a right hip injury kept him out of Wednesday's 2-2 draw against the Portland Timbers.

Top vote-getter Sebastian Giovinco joins Kaka and David Villa in MLS All-Star Fan XI - ESPN FC
A trio of World Cup-winning players highlights the 2017 MLS All-Star Fan XI, who along with the rest of the MLS All-Stars, will take on reigning La Liga and UEFA Champions League titleholders Real Madrid in Chicago on Aug. 2.

United States:

USMNT drop 12 spots in latest FIFA rankings - Stars and Stripes FC
Today, the latest FIFA rankings were released, and the United States took a dive. The USMNT fell 12 spots and now sit at 35th in the world. They are the third-highest ranked CONCACAF team behind Mexico at 16th and Costa Rica at 26th.

Christian Pulisic: Going beyond the hype train - Stars and Stripes FC
Christian Pulisic is on his way to becoming a world class talent. It is amazing to think that the 18-year-old only made his professional debut 19 months ago. In that time, he has earned 16 caps for the United States, scoring 7 goals.

USMNT Gold Cup match-up vs. Panama brings deja vu over "a dangerous team" | MLSsoccer.com
“Panama’s extremely a tough opponent, especially right out of the gate,” said defender Matt Besler, of Sporting Kansas City, on Thursday afternoon, after the US’ last training session at Nashville’s Lipscomb University. “We seem to have played them a lot in recent years, and every single game’s been different, and they’ve all been very tough, physical battles.”

Tim Howard: The Games That Changed My Life | FourFourTwo
The former Manchester United and Everton shot-stopper chooses his six most important matches for club and country.

Juan Agudelo on road to recovery with nothing to lose ahead of Gold Cup - ESPN FC
Every player's career has a certain velocity attached to it. For some, like Christian Pulisic, it's like breaking the sound barrier -- a place where talent, work ethic and circumstance all combine to create a smooth, rapid ascent.

World:

American Soccer Analysis - redefining what a successful dribble is.
Skill moves are one of the many great things about soccer. Watching the players twist and turn with the ball seemingly attached to their feet not only makes for fun highlight reels, but losing a defender also gives an advantage to the attacking team.

PerMertesacker to become Arsenal academy manager in 2018 - ESPN FC
Arsenal captain Per Mertesacker will take charge of the club's academy at the end of the 2017-18 season, when he will retire as a player, the club have announced.

FIFA hand Mexico coach Juan Carlos Osorio a six-match ban for Confed Cup protest - ESPN FC
FIFA has announced that Mexico coach Juan Carlos Osorio has been dealt a six-game suspension after he protested a controversial referee decision and was sent to the stands in Mexico's 2-1 loss to Portugal for third place in the Confederations Cup. Osorio will now miss the Gold Cup.