Daily news roundups

News roundup: Toronto, NYRB advance to CCL semis over Mexican sides

Philadelphia Union

A must-read interview with MLS Commissioner Don Garber, as he weighs in on the Union’s academy, financial situation, future in the market, and more. Worth reading, and a good job by Inqy/DN writer Jonathan Tannenwald in framing smart questions.

Here are some quotes from the interview that really stood out:

  • “There’s a multi-million dollar investment being made in Philadelphia, and they have not yet been able to develop a player who can get sold on to an international club — or have stardom on the first team — to be able to justify the expense. These are long-term investments that are being made, and big commitments on behalf of Philadelphia’s ownership. We’re hoping to start seeing results out of that investment. And if we can’t, we’re going to have to re-think that strategy.”
  • “I have great faith in Jay [Sugarman], I’ve got great faith in Richie [Graham], and hopefully their strategy will pay off for them.”
  • “No fan in Philadelphia should be remotely concerned about that team being anywhere other than where it is…”

More on Alejandro Bedoya’s tribute to students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida, the site of a recent fatal school shooting. Bedoya grew up nearby and spoke after the Union’s most recent game about it.

Union Academy player Patrick Bohui was called up to the U16 national team.

Fellow Union Academy player Brandan Craig got called up to the U15s.

CONCACAF Champions League

It was a remarkable night for MLS, as Toronto FC and the New York Red Bulls knocked Mexican sides out of the Champions League to advance to the semifinals.

The Toronto-Tigres match was a classic, with Toronto advancing by virtue of the away goals tiebreaker. Recaps from:

Watch the extended highlights.

Here is Sebastian Giovinco’s stunner of a free kick goal.

Reaction to Toronto’s big win over the team previously viewed as the best in North America:

  • Goal.com
  • ESPN: TFC coach Greg Vanney and striker Jozy Altidore think they can win the tourney.
  • MLSsoccer.com: A look at the scope.

Meanwhile, the Red Bulls absolutely stomped Tijuana, winning 3-1 at home for a 5-1 aggregate win. Coverage from:

Here’s the list of prior MLS clubs to make the semifinals.

How big is all this?

Seattle plays Chivas Guadalajara tonight in Guadalajara. They enter the match with a 1-0 lead. If they win, it will put three MLS clubs in the semifinals for the first time ever, along likely with Mexico’s Club America.


Bethlehem Steel unveiled its new jersey.

Buy the new Bethlehem Steel jersey here. It looks solid.


MLS Commissioner Don Garber said he prefers that Columbus Crew SC stays in Columbus, rather than move to Austin. Credit to Tannenwald for the big scoop, coming out of his excellent Garber interview.

A new partnership between MLS and Liga MX in Mexico would create an all-star game pitting the best of each league against each other, among other things. How awesome is that?

Around the globe

Sevilla knocked off Manchester United in UEFA Champions League play 2-1 — at Old Trafford. Sevilla advances. Man U does not, and their fans are not happy with Jose Mourinho.

Former New England star Shalrie Joseph will be the new head coach of the national team in his native Grenada.


  1. pragmatist says:

    We talk about ways to see MLS improve, and the Union as an extension. One of our teams MUST win CCL. The league has to break through that barrier and tear down Liga MX’s claim of superiority. Yes, on the whole, they are a better quality league. But if the trophy sits in the US (or Canada) instead of Mexico, the narrative changes massively.
    Matt Doyle was not being hyperbolic. Biggest night in MLS last night. And if one of these teams can finish the job, ESPECIALLY if it’s an All-MLS final, the global reputation will take a quantum leap.
    If you like our team and our league, you are rooting for any of these 3 teams to finish the job and hoist the trophy.

    • well… at least 2 of the 3 teams. thankfully we don’t have to hang our hopes on NYRB

    • Joel Pterosaur says:


    • Pete Mazzaccaro says:

      Indeed. Only sour note was how few people were in the stands for the Red Bull match. I know — weekday in the winter. Still, would have been nice to have a better turnout.

    • Couldn’t agree more.

      • John P. O'Donnell Jr says:

        Granted nothing has been won but….

        “The league has to break through that barrier and tear down Liga MX’s claim of superiority. Yes, on the whole, they are a better quality league”.

        I’ll disagree on the “whole” they are better. On the top they are superior is probably accurate but the seventh place team in Liga MX didn’t look far superior to the Red Bulls at all. Unlike ten years ago, homegrowns are closing down the depth gap with Liga MX. TAM is starting to close the bottom of the talent gap with roster spots 5 to 11. Imagine if they bump it another 5 million a team in the future. CCL might actually find it’s way onto ESPN+ in the future. Wouldn’t it be nice to see teams make some real prize money for winning the league and helping develop other leagues in CONCACAF?

  2. pragmatist says:

    Oh, and on a separate note…I LOVE watching Mourinho lose. Jackwagon. Now go back to blaming everyone else instead of your stupidity. (Why was Fellani anywhere near the pitch?!?!)

    • Pete Mazzaccaro says:

      He always wins at press conferences, though. The game would be 50 percent less interesting were he not part of it. But yeah, happy to see United thumped at Old Trafford.

      • pragmatist says:

        I agree. I miss ‘Arry Redknapp. He was always fantastic with the press, too. I still hold out hope that he fancies a turn in MLS, just for some amusing press conferences.

    • Can’t agree with you more.

  3. el Pachyderm says:

    I believe in honest skepticism as a badge.
    Ruthless in my viewpoints and opinion as it relates to policy in US Soccer, this morning however, credit where it is due in order to maintaining integrity.
    Congrats to Toronto and New York.
    One could argue at polar extremes of how to build teams- buying versus breeding, both advancing impressively. Let us hope these are not one-offs but the beginning of a seed change.

  4. “We demand our money produce players now! Otherwise it’s a complete failure that needs to end!!”
    What a horrible attitude to take. Academies are good for MLS. If they are worried about their “investment”, it seems like they have larger issues to deal with. It almost sounds like The Don is expecting our sale of players to take the place of expansion money once that gravy train ends.
    …but don’t worry about them not having enough money to keep the team in Chester…
    It’s time for Garber to retire. He has taken this league as far as he can. We are now seeing the limits of his persona on the game.

  5. Seems CJ has signed a new deal and also the Steel have signed a midfielder.

  6. Was I glad that I watched the Red Bulls game and some of the Toronto game last night and then watched this morning the end of Totronto game that I had DVR’ed. Classics! Looking forward to the Semi’s whether or not Seattle makes it. What a progress the MLS made over the last 2-3yrs!

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