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March 28, 2013 at 10:01 AM

Getting back to full strength (Thursday links)

The Sounders return to practice Thursday after taking a day off, and they should have a few more guys available.

Recent international call-ups Obafemi Martins, Eddie Johnson and Mario Martinez are expected to be back with the group leading into Saturday’s road game at Real Salt Lake.

Interesting enough, this will be Martins first practice with the team even though his debut came 12 days ago.

I’ll have more from practice later today. Until then, some links:

*     *     *

— Here is more from Denmark on Sounders FC’s signing of Philip Lund. And here is more from Nigeria on Martins’ Seattle move.

Roger Levesque is back in a kilt, and Brad Evans is joining him this time, in an effort to raise money for the Ronald McDonald House.

— Remember that loss to San Jose? Well, there is some good news (very, very minor): The result doesn’t count toward the 2013 Heritage Cup with the Earthquakes, just as a third tiebreaker.

— Around MLS, here are all the goals from last week, Montreal’s Zarek Valentin is going out on loan to Norway, Orlando City is still very serious about getting an expansion team, Portland’s city council has advised the league to end its pursuit of the Cascadia Cup trademark, and is Luke Rodgers on his way back?

— Colorado’s Drew Moor has been suspended an additional game and fined for this strike in the Galaxy game.

— Here’s a full transcript of Landon Donovan‘s first interview with reporters since his return.

— Regarding some national team guys, reports are Jermaine Jones might be interested in a summer move to MLS. And Bolton has loaned out Stuart Holden, but is also considering signing him to a contract extension.

— The Sounders Women released this short documentary based on last summer’s excitement. And the Sounders FC U-23s signed three academy products for the upcoming PDL season: Darwin Jones, Aaron Kovar and Nick Raskasky.

Here’s the latest from Doug Thiel at, this time on the 1977 Soccer Bowl.

— Be sure to check out this community event at Ingraham High School on Saturday involving Special Olympics Washington and Seattle Public Schools as they kick off the 2013 Unified Soccer League season.

— Turns out TV ratings for Tuesday’s USA-Mexico were huge on ESPN (the Seattle-Tacoma market was one of the best) and also on UniMas.

— Costa Rica still isn’t happy with how things happened in Friday’s snowy qualifier, and then having FIFA deny the team’s protest.

— Here’s an interesting update on an FBI investigation into soccer fraud.

— has this video exploring who has the best hair on the team…


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