Daily news roundups

News update: Union friendly livestream, BSFC preseason schedule, and more

Photo: Paul Rudderow

Philadelphia Union

You’re going to want to bookmark this: The Union released their full preseason roster with numbers.

The Union start their preseason matches this Saturday against Leo Fernandes and the Tampa Bay Rowdies. The match will be livestreamed by the Tampa Bay Rowdies:

Jim Curtin held his weekly conference call. There was at least one interesting piece:

During the team’s scrimmage against Orlando City, Curtin really liked using Medunjanin as a six and Bedoya as an eight, and will be looking to do the same in upcoming preseason games. But that’s not the only time the two are spending together. Bedoya and Medunjanin are rooming together down in Clearwater, Fla., and are developing chemistry together, which is already starting to pay dividends. Curtin wants to continue that trend and hopes the chemistry continues to grow.

“They played well together,” Curtin said. “I roomed them together on the trip so there’s more familiarity and you can tell on the field they like each other. Really good players that recognize other really good players. It’s early, but that’s a good partnership with them there.”

Based on previous lineups, it seems that Pontius and Ilson Jr. are lined up for starting attacking spots, with Herbers and Alberg fighting it out for the last spot and Medunjanin and Bedoya teaming up behind them. It also sets up for Edu to come back as a CB, if he’s willing and able.

Union draft pick Chris Nanco has been offered a Bethlehem Steel contract but has not yet signed it. He is not with the team in Orlando.

Eric Ayuk has been called up to the Cameroon U-20 Squad for the U-20 African Cup of Nations.

The Union U-16s are also in Orlando as they finish Generation adidas Cup Qualifying. They will likely need to win both games to have a chance to move on. They will also be spending time with the Union first team, which I’m sure will be a blast for them.

Jacob Born’s preseason preview at PhiladelphiaUnion.com continues with the attacking midfielders.


Bethlehem Steel FC has announced their preseason matches. The first is next Wednesday at YSC Sports.

Aaron Wheeler is returning to Harrisburg City Islanders. He played very well last season when healthy.


MLSsoccer’s Matt Doyle takes his best guess at each team’s starting formation and XI. On the Union: “It’s also fair to wonder if this team really is better than they were last year. They never really seemed to recover from the loss of Vincent Nogueira, and the hope will be that Haris Medunjanin can finally fill that void.” He projects Ilson Jr. to lose out to Alberg and Herbers, Wijnaldum to beat out Fabinho, and Simpson to beat out Sapong.

Big news out of DC: a stadium groundbreaking date is set. They are hoping to open some time in 2018.

New York City FC signed former RSL midfielder John Stertzer.

Minnesota United traded Forward Femi Hollinger-Janzen back to New England Revolution for goalkeeper Bobby Shuttleworth.

Minnesota United also completed the signing of former USMNT Midfielder Josh Gatt.

San Jose Earthquakes revealed their new primary jersey.

Real Salt Lake revealed their new secondary jersey.

NYRB and Ali Curtis have “mutually agreed to part ways”.

Around the globe

Zlatan had a “Zlat Trick” for Manchester United in their Europa League clash with Saint Etienne.

Mark Clattenburg is heading to Saudi Arabia, abruptly quitting the Premier League.

Continuing to break what doesn’t need fixing, FIFA President Gianni Infantino suggested that the 2026 World Cup could be hosted by 4 countries.

Highlight of the day

The opening goal of Zlatan’s day. Truly a magnificent effort.


  1. Eduardo Castro says:

    Hi Adam:Thank you for taking up the Daily News Roundups;I have a co-worker whose boyfriend is related to Zach Pfeffer who was sent to Colorodo prior to the 2016 season from the Union. I saw his contract was not picked up by Colorodo after he was loaned out to Charlotte and Colorodo of the USL. Could you be able to find out if he was picked up by any other club for this year?

    • As of right now, Pfeffer is unsigned as far as I can tell. I can’t even find any information about him trialing anywhere. Doesn’t mean he’s not, but if he is, I can’t find it.

    • You guys sound close. Why not just ask your co-worker to ask her BF to text his relation on where he is playing now?

  2. I am officially dubbing Zlatan’s hat-trick the laziest in history.

  3. Bedoya as an 8.
    I dunno…

  4. Can we circle back to the Edu situation? Haris at the 6 and Bedoya at the 8 sounds like there is no room at the inn for Mo. Yeah, he can play CB (where he is very good and complements Marquez very well), but will he be happy there? Is he expecting to play the 6/8 himself?
    Having played even less than Joel Embiid over the past 2 years, he has very little trade value, so it would seem we will keep him (just making a logical assumption).
    But all accounts, he’s a great guy and a true professional. But at some point you have to wonder when frustration will set in, and if it will have a toll on him and those around him.

    • I’d think that Haris/Mo split the 6/8 and Bedoya moves up to #10.

    • Once healthy, Edu will be the 6, Medunjanin the 8 and Bedoya the 10 or wide right if Alberg shows better then Ilson Jr./Herbers. From everything I have read, Medunjanin is not a defensive “presence” in midfield, which is, not to say that he is poor, just that he doesn’t get into tackles and win balls back. It is more balanced with someone like Edu next to him (again, all from hearsay at this point).
      I have to say, I was a little sad seeing Gatt to Minn. I had brought his name up in the comments here at the beginning of the postseason because I felt like he would be coming to MLS and that he would bring something the team had been lacking – speed. Union went with Picault to address that issue I guess.

      • I could see us using Medunjanin as a 6 and Bedoya at 8 at home if we want to go with a more offensive look. It will be interesting to see the lineups if we ever get the full roster healthy.

    • That Embiid-Edu comparison isn’t valid. The NBA plays an 82 game schedule while MLS has 34 so you’re comparing apples to cantaloupes.

      Let’s see if Edu can get healthy enough to play significant minutes again before we start to project his frustration affecting the team.

      • I enjoy a healthy dose of hyperbole from time to time. But the comparison can be analogous when comparing calendar days since healthy.
        Either way, there is a curiosity about how all of the pieces will fit. I have zero reason to think there will be a problem, other than he is a competitive professional who wants to play.
        The great hope is that this brings out the competitiveness in all of them and elevates the play of the entire team.

      • One point to add: The players that have joined the team have all spoke about how good the locker room is with this team. I would wager that Edu plays a big role in that despite his absence on the field.

      • Yeah. By the time Edu is fit enough to play, there’s a pretty good chance that someone else on the quad will be sidelined with an injury. Trying to find play time for Edu would be a terrific problem to have for us, I’m guessing.

        That said, I’d love to see him filling in at CB. He was terrific in that role.

    • I don’t expect to see Edu being ready to get field time when the season starts. We’re 3wks away from opening day and he’s not even practicing yet. He won’t be ready unitl 3-4 games in at the earliest. My over-under is two months from today before he sees field time.

  5. Mark Clattenburg…KEEP GETTIN’ THEM CHECKS!

    I can’t wait to see how this plays out.

  6. Brian Carroll still locking down the ‘old man’ spot. Gooch is a close 2nd.
    It will be interesting to see if this is Brian’s sunset year (which was supposed to be last year). Any guesses as to whether or not he’ll be on the coaching staff next year?

    • Old Soccer Coach says:

      BC’s got him by nearly a year.
      BC’s DOB 7/20/81.
      OO’s DOB 5/13/82.
      in re BC as coach, Jim Curtin speculated about him in a player-coach role back when Brendan Burke was forming the inaugural Steel squad. Then Edu suffered the stress fracture, and the rest is history.
      So I would guess that it’s whether BC wants to coach. The organization is on record as having interest.
      They have an underlying theme of preferring to deal with people they already know. Fred is now coaching at some level with the younger fellows in the academy, for example.

      • I Am Citizen Insane says:

        Fred is getting licensed and working at YSC with the younger players. I’ve seen him work…Fred will be a good coach I bet.
        Firm. High expectations for technical skill and understanding. Warm. Engaging.
        I see BC up there when his boy plays with the PDP kids. Warm. Engaging. Good dude, Brian Carroll.
        Philadelphia Union would do well to keep both these men very very very close.

      • +1

  7. Interesting stuff in this youtube clip of preseason training: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rE8ZvILdj30

    Team looks like they’re really tight. Also, towards the end, Pontius is acting a bit like a coach, giving instruction to different players at several points. Also, Stewart is on the pitch in a training outfit towards the end…..

    • Ponty was hamming it up for sure but I’d be inclined to agree, the squad looks tight. Without question the lockeroom is one our biggest strengths.

  8. Seems like when Edu is healthy he could replace either the 6 or the 8 and push each/either of those players. If Curtain likes HM at the 6 and AB at the 8, that allows Edu to come in if/when our wingers and/or attacking mid are stale or struggling.

  9. OneManWolfpack says:

    With Haris and Bedoya being the 8 and 6… it seems like Edu is no where near ready. Having too many players isn’t always the worst problem. Bedoya and Haris could allow Alberg to play the 10, since he isn’t best defensively. It just seems like Edu is being counted out for now… and that might just be ok. We saw what happened when he tried to come back last year. He just needs to take his time and get healthy. This team could have a really solid spine if Edu comes back 100%

    • Old Soccer Coach says:

      Edu was supposed to start running FEb 7th, I seem to remember.
      Fans at Goodman Stadium may see him play before fans at Talen do so.

  10. As per Tom Via today, Bethlehem Steel Communications Coordinator, the preseason schedule for the Steel that is referenced above is incomplete.
    Tom was emphatic there will be more games. when, where, against whom, access to the genral public and or the press, all those things are currently under negotiation.
    Tom assures all of us there is more preseason to come for the steel than just Junior Lone Star, ‘Nova, and Temple.
    We all need to remember that the NASL survival-USL division 2 drama delayed planning for everybody involved. for example, the Steel have game dates, but they do not yet have start times and reportedly will not till closer to the end of the month.

  11. An observation from Bethlehem Steel FC practice late this morning indoors at YSC Sport in Wayne.
    Chris Nanco was on the turf playing in an 8 v. 8 scrimmage at the end of today’s morning session.
    Friday, Feb. 17th, c. 11:00-11:30 AM

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