June, widely recognized as Pride Month, gives communities across the nation a chance to celebrate equality, inclusion, social justice and everything LGBTQ! Seattle celebrated its first Gay Pride Week in 1974, the same year the Sounders first took the pitch in the inaugural NASL season. With marriage equality now legal in 37 states, the Pride Movement continues to gain momentum. This growing spirit shines in Seattle through a diverse line-up of local events, highlighted here in the first official Pride Guide. Included in this year’s festivities is Sounders FC’s match on Saturday, June 20th that celebrates Pride and Seattle’s LGBTQ community. To kick off the weekend, Jason Collins will join us Friday night in The Ninety to speak to his experiences as the first active openly gay athlete in a major American sport. It’s a night guaranteed to be filled with inspiration and insight – here’s what Jason had to say about upcoming World Cups in Russia and Qatar.
Football Foreign Policy
With the U.S. and Cuba moving ever closer to restoring diplomatic ties, the increasing popularity of the World’s game provides a compelling platform for our two nations to get reacquainted. The New York Cosmos, a reinvented version of the popular NASL club now playing in the second division of U.S. soccer, recently traveled to Cuba to play the Cuban National Team and kick off the ‘football foreign policy’ strategy. Raul approves. With soccer poised to replace baseball as Cuba’s favorite pastime, baseball diamonds give way to soccer pitches and kids no longer dream to follow in the footsteps of countrymen Carlos Beltran and Jorge Posada, but rather aspire to be like soccer stars Lionel Messi and Osvaldo Alonso. Next stop, Havana Nights.
Seattle Soccer products have made a splash on the world stage recently. Megan Rapinoe, Seattle Reign FC’s dynamic superstar, scored two goals vs. Australia as the US Women began their quest to win the Women’s World Cup for an unprecedented third time since the tournament’s outset in 1991. Germany has also won it twice.
On the men’s side, Sounders FC-ers – past, present, and future (fingers crossed) – shined in the U.S. Men’s recent victory against current FIFA World Champions, Germany. Brad Evans, Jordan Morris, and DeAndre Yedlin – all second half substitutes for the US – came on and changed the game and ultimately the outcome of the match. Here’s the call on the game winning goal.
Morris, a Sounders FC Academy product, was on hand to see the US Open Cup match Tuesday night at Starfire Sports Complex. Here's what he had to say about his recent success with the USMNT.
The Peoples’ Champion
On Tuesday night, the Golden State Warriors claimed the title of World Champions, edging the world’s best and the Cleveland Cavaliers in game six of the NBA Finals. The Warriors won a league-high 67 games during the regular season, inspiring the Bay Area through passion, perseverance, and a total team effort. The Warriors organization ensured that inspiration found its way to the most unlikely of places, even penetrating the walls of the San Quentin State Prison, California’s oldest correctional facility. Bob Myers, Golden State’s GM, his staff, and the San Quentin Warriors remind us that sport is a powerful vehicle to galvanize communities and bring meaning to our lives.
A Call to Action
Do you know someone who has made a significant contribution to our community, using soccer as a tool for good? If the answer is yes, click here to nominate a community champion to compete in the MLS WORKS Community MVP Contest for an opportunity to win prizes, including a $10,000 donation to a charity of their choice.
Find out how United in Green, Sounders FC’s community call to action, is using soccer as a vehicle to empower and inspire here.