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Dortmund use over 80,000 flowers for lavish kit unveiling

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Borussia Dortmund have unveiled their new home and away kits for the upcoming season, but in a more floral-than-normal unveiling.

The Champions League finalists unveiled a giant-sized kit made of 80,645 flowers to fans in a park outside of Westfalenstadion. The arrangement covered 3,280 square feet.

A giant-sized kit placed outside Borussia Dortmund’s stadium was the plan for unveiling this season’s jersey.

Kit manufacturers Puma arranged the creative stunt, matching the number of flowers to the capacity of Westfalenstadion.

This isn’t the first time Dortmund have come up with an out-of-the-ordinary marketing campaign.  They also poked fun at common German stereotypes to promote the 2013 Champions League final in London.

Dortmund released a series of pictures with a beach lounger and draped towel placed in different locations around London, a jab at the stereotype that Germans like to wake up early to reserve pool spots by draping towels over chairs.  They accompanied the pictures with a graphic that read, “You were hoping for a final between two English teams.  Or at least a stadium full of hot chics from Spain.  But instead you got the Krauts. Have fun.”

The new kit itself is incredibly smart, with a clean and fresh look.  Ditching last year’s stripes, the home kit features a light plaid pattern faded behind the yellow background that adds a touch of design to an otherwise plain but crisp-looking kit.  It also has a black collar with a yellow triangle that stands out but isn’t loud.  The away jersey is black with a handsome yellow stripe across the sleeves.  The third kit is white with a grey swatch on the right shoulder.

Both kits feature a playful-looking font on the back that reads “Dortmund.”

Dortmund star Marco Reus expressed his admiration for the kit, saying, “The design and fit of our new jersey are really fantastic. They have fully met my expectations, especially with the new shape of the collar.”

Real Salt Lake signs Plata to multi-year DP deal

Real Salt Lake forward Joao Plata (8) gestures while walking during an MLS soccer game against New York City FC Saturday, May 23, 2015, in Sandy, Utah. (Leah Hogsten/The Salt Lake Tribune via AP) DESERET NEWS OUT; LOCAL TELEVISION OUT; MAGS OUT
Leah Hogsten/The Salt Lake Tribune via AP
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SANDY, Utah (AP) Real Salt Lake has re-signed forward Joao Plata to a multi-year contract and he will continue to hold a designated-player spot.

The 24-year-old was acquired from Toronto FC before the 2013 season and he has 30 goals and 30 assists in regular-season play with RSL.

[ MORE: Liverpool flops vs LCFC ]

Plata ranks No. 3 on the team’s all-time assists list and No. 5 in goals. He has 33 goals and 35 assists during his MLS career.

Real Salt Lake begins the season Saturday when it hosts Toronto FC.

Gotze out indefinitely with metabolism disorder

ROTTERDAM, NETHERLANDS - NOVEMBER 06:  Mario Goetze (R) and Ann-Kathrin Broemmel attend the MTV Europe Music Awards 2016 on November 6, 2016 in Rotterdam, Netherlands.  (Photo by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images for MTV)
Photo by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images for MTV
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Mario Gotze’s last few seasons have not fulfilled the expectations thrust about the World Cup-winning attacker.

Gotze, 24, scored the 113rd minute goal that lifted Germany past Argentina in the 2014 World Cup, but has endured successive disappointing seasons between Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund.

[ MORE: Liverpool hires new CEO ]

With just two goals this season, Gotze has played just 24 minutes since BVB came back from winter break. On Monday, the club revealed why: a metabolism disorder that will keep him out for an indefinite period of time. From Sky Sports:

“We are glad to know the reasons for Mario’s complaints and we are convinced that after recovering he will give us extra quality with his exceptional abilities,” said Dortmund’s director of sport Michael Zorc.

“Mario gets the full backing and maximum support from all of us at Borussia Dortmund on his way back.”

It’s been a while since we’ve seen Gotze at his best, and here’s hoping this problem is both curable and the reason for his struggles.

Liverpool hires EA Sports executive as new CEO

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Liverpool has named Peter Moore as the successor to chief executive office Ian Ayre.

Ayre, 53, is off to 1860 Munich this summer, and has stepped down early to allow Moore to take over.

[ MORE: Liverpool flops vs LCFC ]

A Liverpool-born executive, Moore was the chief operating officer at EA Sports and has also worked with Microsoft and SEGA.

The move “completes a transitional phase” which saw several new names join the fray. From The Liverpool Echo:

The appointment completes a transition plan by FSG which included appointing Michael Edwards as sporting director while Billy Hogan was promoted to the role of managing director and chief commercial officer.

Palmer-Brown heads U.S. U-20s to win over Mexico (video)

Erik Palmer-Brown
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The United States U-20 men are on the precipice of the U-20 World Cup after beating Mexico 1-0 on Monday, scooping their first win against El Tri in 31 years.

Brooks Lennon continues to look the part for the U.S. ahead of his loan season from Liverpool to Real Salt Lake.

[ MORE: Liverpool flops again ]

The youngster sent in this free kick that Erik Palmer-Brown, himself a loan man at Porto from Sporting KC this year, headed into the Mexico goal courtesy of a back post defender who opted for his right leg over a decent clearing attempt.

The U.S. took that lead into halftime.

Things got chippy as the second half unfolded, with referee Melvin Matamoros turning a blind eye to a few clattering tackles.

Tab Ramos subbed NYCFC prospect Jonathan Lewis into the match, and he sprung a counterattack that should have put the match to bed. But Lewis’ through ball missed FC Dallas’ Coy Craft and the latter took too much time, frittering away the chance.