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The Blue Links: August 25th, 2015

Bad news for the future as the FIFA reform Chief defends Sepp Blatter while also trolling US Soccer. Jurgen Klinsmann says he needs help from MLS for the upcoming busy schedule, and Sporting KC are in the home stretch still in reaching distance of the Galaxy.

Sporting will need Zusi to continue to play with the confidence he had in Columbus
Sporting will need Zusi to continue to play with the confidence he had in Columbus
Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

Yes, the last couple games have been rough. But we can all take a breather this week. The boys had Monday and Tuesday off from practice to recover from a difficult stretch of 5 matches in 15 days.

So take a load off, you guys.

11 goals conceded in the last three matches doesn't bode well; but with everyone rested and Soni Mustivar back on the field, they can get back to business. (We will know more about the return of Mustivar at practice tomorrow).

The Supporters' Shield is far from lost. We're in the home stretch with ten games remaining. They still have three games in hand over the Galaxy and two on Vancouver (STANDINGS). However with two matches in Portland, and big home matches against Dallas, Seattle and LA... the road is a bit bumpy.

Although Vermes says nobody has "emerged as the team to beat", the Galaxy is pretty damn scary right now.

For one.... Giovani Dos Santos feels at home in Los Angeles. And they are all playing like it. Four players scored as they NYCFC 5-1 last weekend and Bruce Arena is loving it: Galaxy continue to find success as MLS landscape changes.

"The good thing is you look at the front four, everyone scored today. That's always a good sign. You've got Juninho and Stevie [Gerrard] who can score also. It's certainly exciting times ahead, but we just continue. Don't get carried away. Continue with the way we're playing like we have been for the last month. As long as we can do that, we'll be fine." - Bruce Arena

The latest MLS Power Rankings came out today and Sporting KC slid to 4th. Colorado, this weekend's opponent, sits all the down in 19th (above only the Chicago Fire). ESPN also has the same top 4 of LA, VAN, NYRB, and SKC.

Zusi's howler is up for GOTW. But it will be tough to beat Cristian Techera's flick.

Right as things are heating up in MLS and everyone wants to be peaking, Jurgen Klinsmann hoping to to get help from clubs during USMNT's busy October.

"Obviously, we need help," said Klinsmann. "We need help from the clubs overseas, we need help from the clubs here in MLS in order to get the players released, especially the olympic team. Qualifiers start outside of the release dates, so we badly need those players to qualify for Rio de Janeiro." - Jurgen

ESPN took a look at several players and who is "warming up" and who is "cooling down" on the national team radar for the upcoming friendlies against Peru and Brazil, along with the VERY important match with Mexico on Oct. 10.

Dempsey, Altiore, Diskerud, and Brooks were all 'cooling down'. Geoff Cameron has been starting at CB for Stoke City and could help stop the defensive woes. Graham Zusi was also on the warming up list:

Graham Zusi, M, Sporting Kansas City (MLS)

Why he's here: Slowed by a series of injuries early in the year, Zusi went the distance for SKC for the first time since June on Saturday, scoring a terrific second-half goal against Columbus.

What this means: It's hard to know where Zusi stands with Klinsmann following a so-so Gold Cup. But the U.S. doesn't have a ton of attacking options right now, and at his best, the Floridian can still help the U.S. in the attacking third of the field.

US Soccer is changing things up a bit in the youth ranks: U.S. Soccer introducing new coaching initiatives focused on youth development | Soccer By Ives.

The 2018 CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying has been tweaked a bit, and RIGHT HERE is how it is all set up.

Just in case you haven't had a good hard laugh today.... Sepp Blatter: Fifa chief says 'he is clean' amid corruption inquiry.

"I have my conscience and I know I'm an honest man. I am clean. I am not a worried man."

In other somewhat troubling news, the guy tabbed with reforming FIFA Francois Carrad defends Sepp Blatter.

On top of that he just absolutely thrashed American soccer. While questioning why the US is even involved in this FIFA nonsense, he had this to say.

"For the U.S., football, soccer, does not have the same weight as baseball, basketball and American football. There, it's just an ethnic sport for girls in schools. In addition, the case involves only a few 'rogues,' including at the FIFA executive committee, who have filled their pockets from continental competitions."

I vehemently disagree, sir.

Sporting head to Colorado on Saturday. Check back in tomorrow after practice as we should have updates on Mustivar and Anibaba. And maybe even the first looks at newcomer Jordi Quintilla.