What comes next for Minnesota United FC?

The MLS playoffs feel bizarre sometimes. The Loons played 34 games from mid-April to mid-November. They didn’t have their spot in the playoffs confirmed until the final whistle blew in game number 34. And now, two weeks after the conclusion to that very long season, they played a little bit of good soccer but a larger bit of bad soccer — and wham, season’s over. That’s an awfully long season to have the postseason be over after 90 minutes.

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Appreciate the Loons - they could be the Timberwolves

Monday, I tweeted a note about the Loons, and specifically about coach Adrian Heath. He’s one of four coaches in MLS that have coached the last three full seasons and made the playoffs in each one, along with Brian Schmetzer (Seattle), Gio Savarese (Portland), and Jim Curtin (Philadelphia). I’ll add here, in this unlimited space, that the Loons are one of only seven MLS teams to make the playoffs in all three of those seasons; the others are NYCFC, the New York Red Bulls, and the New England Revolution.

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Wounded Loons need points in Houston

Two weeks ago, Minnesota United seemed to be impossibly short of attacking players. Mid-season signing Franco Fragapane was dealing with a medium-term injury. Leading scorer Robin Lod injured his calf in training. And first-choice backup winger Niko Hansen hurt his hamstring, leaving manager Adrian Heath to play Hassani Dotson out of position at left wing.

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The most popular soccer league in the USA is not in the USA

Twice a year, when Mexican soccer begins anew, I’m reminded of the hidden truth of soccer in the United States: the most popular soccer league in the USA is not the one that’s in the USA. By TV viewership, the way that we measure everything in the United States, Liga MX is the most popular league in the USA. It’s not particularly close.

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Theoretical mustards, ranked

In my fridge, I have a bottle of what is labeled “Irish mustard.” How it got into my refrigerator is not important; suffice it to say that this came from a neighboring state, with a sterling recommendation from some residents of said neighboring state.

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