US Open Cup
Look for PSP’s match preview of tonight’s US Open Cup semifinal match between the Union and Sporting Kansas City later this morning. In the meanwhile check out these from the Daily News, Delco Times, CSN Philly, theCup.us, SportingKC.com, Kansas City Star, Kansas City Kansan, Sporting News, and this from the Inquirer, if you can call it a preview.
You can buy tickets for tonight’s game here.
John Hackworth knows the 4-0 scoreline in the win over Kansas City a few weeks back is deceptive. “I just recently went back and looked at that game for the fourth time, and it’s not a 4-0 game,” Hackworth said in his weekly press conference on Tuesday. “They were really good in that game. There’s a lot of moments in that game where they could’ve gotten back into it right away. Fortunately for us, we did an excellent job of winning some important battles in that game.”
Hackworth also knows KC will be “super-motivated,” not just to avenge the 4-0 loss in league play, but to advance to the final, which they will host if they can get past the Union. “We’ll have to deal with that,” he acknowledged. “But guess what? They have to come play at PPL Park tomorrow night, and that to me gives us a huge advantage. We feed off the energy in this stadium, and it’s something that, as a staff and as a team, we take great pride in.”
What does Hackworth expect? “It’ll be a good soccer game, two teams that are very motivated,” he said. “We expect it to be fast and physical, you have two teams that are playing well right now.”
Kansas City centerback Aurélien Collin said, “That game against Philadelphia was our worst game – and no, we did not forget about it. We had a very bad game. No excuses. Now we have to go there and be focused enough to not make the same mistakes.”
Kansas City defender Matt Besler said of tonight’s game, “It’s a good opportunity to go back up there and get revenge. I don’t think we need much motivation going back up there. We got embarrassed on (June 23), but the stakes are going to be high next time we go up there and I think we’re going to be ready…It’s a great feeling (to be in the semifinals. We’re one game away from the finals — 90 minutes. These opportunities don’t come around too often. They don’t come around every year. The guys who are older definitely recognize that.”
Jack McInerney, Freddy Adu, and Michael Farfan were named to MLSsoccer.com’s Team of the Week. Gabriel Farfan, Antoine Hoppenot and Zac MacMath received honorable mentions. The last time the Union had three players on the list was Week 18 last year and two of those players are no longer on the team. Before that it was Week 7 of 2011.
More on that MacMath/Williams save against Toronto here.
Antoine Hoppenot moves into the five spot at MLSsoccer.com’s Rookie Rankings.
Carlos Valdes was named to SBI’s Midseason Best XI second team.
More power rankings? Sure. At Soccer America, the Union move up three spots to No. 15, which is also where ProSoccerTalk has them.. At MLSsoccer.com, they move up two spots to “No. 14 with a bullet.” At SBI, the Union move up four spots to lucky No. 13.
The Union love continues at MLSsoccer.com’s Fantasy Report.
JP Dellacamera says the Union gave their best performance of the season when they defeated Toronto.
MLS Talk says the reversal of Union’s fortunes stems from Michael Farfan and the tactical shift in the forward line.
Roger Torres said of the ovation he received when he was subbed in against Toronto on Sunday, “I was so excited for that…It’s crazy. These are things that I love and never forget.”
Beats & Rhymes FC talks to Michael Lahoud.
Noting he has only scored 23 goals in seven years as a professional, Freddy Adu makes Transfer Tavern’s Top 5 list of players “who are currently on the brink and still could make it big yet have yet to do so.”
Reading United are on the road to Jersey Express tonight.
The Philadelphia Union Soccer Mobile Tour will be at Glassboro’s Summerfest on Thursday.
The celebration of the 50th anniversary of Jamaica’s independence at PPL Park on Saturday, August 4 will feature a match between a Jamaica invitational soccer team and Philadelphia Union invitational team. Following the match, a concert featuring internationally renowned reggae artists Chaka Demus & Pliers, Sanchez, Spraga Benz, Little Hero, Joshua and more will take place. The 12 hour event, which starts at 10am, will also be attended by the Honorable Prime Minister of Jamaica, Portia Simpson Miller. More on the event here.
Local lad and top Impact draft pick Andrew Wenger begins what will be a series of posts about politics and soccer in Montreal.
The Shin Guardian says a possible move to MLS by Carlos Bocanegra will provide the league with the opportunity to demonstrate it has the maturity not to negotiate against itself.
Sporting News looks at the new majority owners of DC United and their desire to build a new stadium and make the club a global brand.
An article at MLSsoccer.com suggests that teams with the most consistent lineup and fewest substitutions tend to earn more points at a rate that equals three wins over the course of a season. The Union currently sit in the middle of the table at No. 10 in the list of teams with the fewest subs per game.
Speaking of consistency, Goal.com argues the Disciplinary Committee’s decision to suspend New England’s Kelyn Rowe shows it is inconsistent.
Soccer America wonders what the formula is when it comes to hiring a new coach in MLS.
US Soccer Players looks at Montreal’s attendance struggles and says the league sends out mixed messages: “Success with one club speaks to the growth of the League as a whole. Problems at another are isolated, particular in nature, and not evidence of anything broader.”
Could Alessandro Del Piero be heading to Thailand?
If you haven’t seen it yet, below is the very groovy tifo display Emerald City Supporters put on to honor Hawaii-native and ten-year Seattle Sounders veteran Zach Scott. Scott said, “It was so cool…If I could’ve run up there and shook everyone’s hands, I would have.”
The final four teams that will be competing the the WPSL Elite League championship series are Boston Breakers, Chicago Red Stars, New York Fury and Western New York Flash. The Soccer Wire recaps the past week’s league results.
New England Soccer News puts the focus on my favorite USWNT player, Heather O’Reilly.
The Washington Times checks in with Ali Krieger, who is in the fifth month of a six- to eight-month rehabilitation after suffereing a torn ACL and MCL in her right knee from a reckless challenge in the USWNT 14-0 win over Dominican Republic during the Olympic qualifiers.
TopDrawerSoccer.com looks at the state of the US Soccer Development Academy.
Former USMNT and MLS player Tony Sanneh and former USWNT player Kate Markgraf leave today for Ethiopia as part of the US State Department’s SportsUnited program.
The Guardian reports, “The Glazer family’s timing for floating Manchester United is facing criticism from some analysts who argue the Glazers are deliberately avoiding having to present United’s expected decline in financial performance in 2011-12.”
Israel has released Mahmud Sarsak, a Palestinian soccer player who was arrested in 2009 while on his way from Gaza to sign with a team on the West Bank. Sarsak went on a nearly three-month long hunger strike to protest his detention without charge.
Diego Maradona? Unemployed.