Photo: Paul Rudderow
Big thanks to the Philadelphia Union players, coaches and fans who attended Tuesday night’s Team Dinner event for a wonderful time. Great people doing great things.
Michael Farfan and Carlos Valdes were named to MLSsoccer.com’s Team of the Week.
Zac MacMath is No. 9 on the Castrol Weekly Top 20 Performers.
Marfan says of the run that led to Freddy Adu’s goal last Saturday, “I was left with a one-vs.-one situation and just figured I’d take a run at him. I just kind of zig-zagged and was hoping to find a way to get a cross in. Fortunately, it worked out.” He says of the Union midfield, “With the package we have. I think we’re really able to create a good possession game.”
Kerith Gabriel reports, “The Eagles and Union are planning to announce a major soccer event that will return to Lincoln Financial Field this summer. What’s unsure is if the contest will be part of the annual World Football Challenge set to return to the United States in July.” The league announced on Tuesday the return of the summer tournament.
Gabriel also reports that Peter Nowak will not appeal his one game suspension for entering the field of play during the fracas that followed Gabriel Farfan’s red card tackle.
John Smallwood recounts a series of disconnects between Peter Nowak—from offseason moves, to player selection, to perceptions of arrogance—and the fans that has resulted in boos at PPL Park. Concluding the honeymoon is over, Smallwood compares Nowak to Andy Reid and says, “At some point, if things don’t change quickly, ‘it’s still early’ will look as if it is too late,” before adding, “Results, not promises, are what matter.”
JP Dellacamera looks at some of the standouts from Saturday’s win.
He’s big, he’s orange, nothing rhymes with…Wait a sec, that isn’t Zac MacMath!
Bensalem’s Ryan Richter, formerly with the Union and now with Charleston Battery, has been named USL PRO Player of the Week. Harrisburg City Islanders Andrew Welker and Tom Brandt, who played at Penn and was a 2012 Supplemental Draft pick for the Union, were named to the USL PRO Team of the Week. Also from the City Islanders, Bilal Duckett, and JT Noone, who played for Temple before his time with the Union in 2010, received honorable mentions.
Upper 90 has some cool pictures and video of some of the Islander mentioned above.
Ocean City Nor’Easters have signed three standout players from Lafayette College, defender Julian Plummer and midfileders Alec Golini and Blake Fink.
The San Jose injury list could prove helpful for the Union on Saturday.
Asked about the importance of being in first place in the West, San Jose GK Jon Busch replied, “What’s the date today? It’s April. We want to be at the top of the table in October. It’s great to get off to a good start, but the season’s 34 games, and this was game seven. … There’s a lot of season still to be played.”
Don Garber explains the league’s intention to be recognized as one of the best in the world in the next ten years. “That doesn’t mean we’re going to be as good as the Premier League…It means there are four or five leagues around the world that are respected on the quality side of being the best, and we believe in 10 years we should be able to create that.”
The league’s Disciplinary Committee announced on Tuesday the retroactive suspension of FC Dallas forward Blas Pérez for elbowing Jordan Harvey over the weekend.
Soccer Nation takes a look at preparations for the start of the WPSL Elite League season. Says WPSL Commissioner Jerry Zanelli, “With the addition of the pro WPS teams [Western New York Flash, Boston Breakers], the WPSL Elite League has become the preeminent women’s soccer league in America.”
If New York Fury, coached by former Independence gaffer Paul Riley, achieve the kind of success in the Elite League that the Independence did in its two seasons in WPS, the fact that their roster bears as many as ten players who either had played in previous seasons with the former WPS club or were about to join it before the 2012 WPS season was canceled may have something to do with it.
Because so many Independence players are on the Fury, Riley figures it’s only natural that they’ll carry on the Philly rivalry with former WPS teams WNY Flash and Boston Breakers.
The USWNT will open up Olympic tournament play against France. Merde!
Bayern Munich travel to Real Madrid today for their Champions League semifinal second leg with a 2–1 lead (2:30pm, FX). Yesterday, Chelsea (pictured at left) defeated Barcelona 3–1 to advance to the final.
Chelsea will play in the final without the services of Branislav Ivanovic, Raul Meireles and Ramires (yellow card accumulation) and John Terry (sheer bloody idiotic lunacy).
Terry says of his red card, “I’m not that type of player to intentionally hurt anyone. I’ve raised my knee, which I maybe shouldn’t have done in hindsight, but hopefully people who know me as a person, as a player… I’m not that type of player.” Good one, John, good one.