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Minnesota United’s Collin Martin becomes second openly gay MLS player

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Coinciding with LGBT pride month celebrations across the world, Minnesota United’s Collin Martin made a big announcement that could have positive ramifications across all sports.

In a message posted across his social media platforms, the 23-year-old publicly came out as gay, becoming just the second player in MLS history to do so, following former U.S. Men’s National Team winger Robbie Rogers. Since Rogers retired after last season, Martin is the only publicly gay player in the league.

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The announcement comes ahead of Minnesota United celebrating “pride night” in its home match on Friday against FC Dallas.

Since the announcement, Martin has received nothing but praise and support online from fans and teammates alike.

Report: Minnesota United chasing Ecuadorian national teamer

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Minnesota United may be hoping another Ibarra can cure what ails its attack.

Romario Ibarra, 23, is on the Loons’ radar according to The Athletic‘s Kristian Dyer and Jeff Rueter, who say Minnesota would like to land the Ecuadorian when the summer transfer window opens on July 10.

[ MORE: Modric urges humility ]

Ibarra was limited to eight matches for Universidad Católica this season as he battled through a lingering metatarsal fracture. But he’s scored against Argentina and Chile in each of his appearances for the national team, both World Cup qualifiers.

From The Athletic:

Sources say that Ibarra’s contract is unlikely to make him a designated player, leaving Quintero as the club’s sole DP. (It could depend, in part, on the size of the transfer fee.) Based on league standards, his salary will likely be drawn from Targeted Allocation Money (TAM) contract seems likely.

Ibarra’s older brother Renato plays for Club America, and has 36 caps.

Minnesota is six points outside the West’s final playoff spot, and has scored just 17 goals in 14 matches.

U.S. Open Cup: RBNY thumps NYCFC; Nashville knocks Colorado out

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The New York Red Bulls have resumed residence in their derby rivals’ heads.

The Hudson River Derby was decidedly one-sided as RBNY buried NYCFC at Red Bull Arena on Wednesday, moving onto the fourth round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.

[ MORE: Tuesday’s results ]

But first: a Cupset.

Nashville SC 2-0 Colorado Rapids

A Michael Azira own goal and Ropapa Mensah insurance marker sent Anthony Hudson’s Rapids crashing out of the Open Cup at USL competition.

New York City FC 0-4 New York Red Bulls

Woof, Mr. Vieira. This is the sort of loss that drives you to Nice.

One month and one day since the Red Bulls crushed their derby rivals 4-0 at home, they duplicated the score line.

Vincent Bezecourt scored in the second minute, Aaron Long just after halftime, and Daniel Royer twice in the final three minutes to give RBNY a four-star win.

Atlanta United 3-0 Charleston Battery

Tata’s kids didn’t have any problem with their USL visitors, as Andrew Carleton, Ezequiel Barco, and Romario Williams all scored to set up a fourth round date with Orlando City.

Columbus Crew 2-2 Chicago Fire (Chicago wins 10-9 in PKs)

An entertaining 120 minutes led to a wild, 11-round penalty kick shootout. Richard Sanchez saved Logan Ketterer’s 11th round effort after scoring his own effort, a 17th-straight conversion between the two teams.

In regulation, Nemanja Nikolic scored twice for the Fire while Cristian Martinez had a goal and assisted on Adam Jahn’s marker for Columbus.

FC Cincinnati 0-0 Minnesota United (Loons win 3-1 in PKs)

One of MLS’ new boys visited next season’s debutants, and there was little to separate the two at Nippert Stadium. Cincy hit the bar with its first effort and Bobby Shuttleworth stopped the second. Spencer Richey made a save on the Loons’ third effort to give Cincy hope, but Shuttleworth made another save to send Minnesota through.

Elsewhere
Miami United 0-3 Orlando City SC
Houston Dynamo 5-0 NTX Rayados
San Antonio FC 0-1 FC Dallas

Sporting KC reclaim West’s top spot with 4-1 win over MNUFC

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KANSAS CITY, KAN. — The game in 100 words (or less): Sporting Kansas City lost their hold on the Western Conference’s top spot barely 24 hours ago, and Peter Vermes’ side is already already back on top after throttling Minnesota United to the tune of 4-1 on Sunday. Daniel Salloi’s ascendancy to MLS stardom continued, as the 21-year-old opened the scoring with a stunning strike from 22 yards out (his 4th of the season, to go with 4 assists) in the 9th minute. It was 1-1 just two minutes later before the floodgates opened and Sporting KC made it 3-1 before halftime. Diego Rubio added a late insurance goal The victory pushes Sporting back to within one point of Atlanta United (29 points) in the Supporters’ Shield race and extends their unbeaten run to five games (three wins), while Minnesota have lost three of their last five games and eight in total on the season.

[ MORE: USMNT throws away HT lead, loses 2-1 in Dublin ]

Three moments that mattered

9′ — Salloi turns into acres of space, makes it 1-0 — Forced in the center forward spot in Khiry Shelton’s absence, Salloi brought a different dimension to the SKC attack _ a directness and eye for goal — that’s been absent since Dom Dwyer’s best days in Sporting blue.

35′ — Wan Kuzain scores his first SKC goal to make it 2-1 — A night to remember 19-year-old Wan Kuzain, dubbed “the Malaysian Messi” in his homeland and forced into his second appearance in as many game by an early injury to Yohan Croizet.

81′ — Rubio slots home from a tough angle for 4-1 — It’s been a tough year for Rubio, who lost the starting center forward spot in the preseason and has played very little through the first three months, but he took his one chance — with his weaker left foot — very well.

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Man of the match: Cristian Lobato

Goalscorers: Salloi (9′), Mears (11′), Wan Kuzain (35′), Lobato (38′), Rubio (81′)

FOLLOW LIVE: SKC aim to reclaim West’s top spot vs. MIN

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Sporting Kansas City were knocked from their perch atop the Western Conference on Saturday, as FC Dallas (26 points) topped Los Angeles FC to take over the top spot which Sporting KC (25) had held for much of the season.

[ FOLLOW: Sporting KC vs. Minnesota United to end the MLS weekend ]

Peter Vermes’ side’s first chance to reclaim supremacy in the West comes on Sunday with ninth-place Minnesota United visit Children’s Mercy Park.

With Johnny Russell away on international duty for Scotland, Cristian Lobato has been called into the starting lineup alongside Daniel Salloi, who’s starting up top for Khiry Shelton, and Gerso Fernandes.

Hit the link above to follow along throughout the afternoon, and check back with PST for coverage after the final whistle.