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Four Star Daily: Donovan speaks, mass firing stinks

Landon Donovan spoke with the media for the first time since his sabbatical. The Sporting News has laid of Brian Straus after breaking the USMNT discontent story.

Chip Somodevilla

Some morning links to go with your pancakes and real maple syrup

  • Landon Donovan spoke to reporters today after practice, his third practice back with the team. He'll be on a conference call later, but for now it's worth noting he had planned on the LA Galaxy - Montreal Impact tilt for his comeback match before it was rescheduled.
  • In expansion new, Orlando City is making a strong push to become the twentieth team in MLS. It's likely a futile effort, seeing as how locked in to NY2 MLS seems to be, but maybe they can get Don Garber's attention if they can break ground on new grounds first.
  • In soccer media news, the Sports News has cut 12 writers and editors in a surprising mass firing. This included Brian Straus who just a week earlier broke the story about discontent amongst United States national team players. Sporting News purchased Straus' AOL Fanhouse two years ago initially firing him, then hiring him on as the publication's first full-time soccer writer. The firings look to be connected to Sporting News divesting of the Fanhouse name.
  • More from the "soccer journalism is a tough business" front, Fox officially announced that it will be launching FXX in September, a comedy extension of the FX brand. It's being said behind the scenes, though not officially announced, that Fox Soccer is going to be converted to this new channel. Fortunately in this case, the media behind FSC look to be able to catch on with the new Fox Sports 1 channel.
  • Conversely, soccer broadcasts are more viewed than ever. Here's ESPN's press release showing that the WCQ match between the US and Mexico was its most watched Qualifier or Friendly ever, doubling the rating that the last US and Mexico WCQ tilt received. An average of 2.385 million viewers watched on ESPN with a 1.4 rating.
  • I wrote yesterday about how UniMas is capitalizing on an ever growing young Mexican-American market. Here's UniMas' press release with the information I quoted, on just how many markets it was the most watched broadcast in.