Daily news roundups

Opportunity lost: Recaps/ reaction to Union loss, strong weekend for Union Academy, HCI wins home opener

Photo: Paul Rudderow

Philadelphia Union

Another lead squandered, another loss at home.

Jim Curtin said after Sunday’s 2-1 loss to New England Revolution, “We only have one win. If we win today we’re in third place. If we lose, New England jumps up. We missed a huge opportunity tonight. We have to get on a run. We haven’t been able to do that this year, put really good performances together and get three points. You can’t afford to drop all three points at home.”

Maurice Edu said, “It’s a funny game. I think the guys that came off the bench, they tried to create a spark, they tried to lift their teams. They got a goal off of their guys that came in. And ultimately, I just think that we came up short on the day. I don’t think we were as sharp as we know we can be.”

Curtin said the gamewinner had nothing to do with Brian Carroll: “Brian Carroll had nothing to do with the goal. Ray [Gaddis] gets beat 1-on-1 in a spot where he never gets beat 1-on-1, and today he did. So to put that on [Carroll] is ridiculous. If you want to put it on me, that’s fine. But at the same time, I knew going into the game, I was subbing those two guys around the 60-minute mark with the thought [that we were playing] three games in nine days.”

Ray Gaddis took responsibility for the loss on himself: “Just to be honest, I’ll take full responsibility for our loss today. As a leader on our team, that wasn’t good enough for me on the day.…Take nothing away from Teal Bunbury. It was a great play. But you got to step up and play. Mostly, it’s on me.”

Cristian Maidana said of his wonderful free kick goal, “Sometimes you get it right and today it happened. It didn’t help us win. Personally I’m happy but I’m not happy about the result.”

Sheanon Williams said of the loss, “It puts a stop to that momentum. We have to regroup and try to get ready for the next game.”

Recaps from PSPInquirer, Daily News, Delco Times, CSN PhillyCinnaminson Patch, Philly Soccer News, Brotherly GamePhilly Sports NetworkVavelThe Sports Quotient, MLSsoccer.com, New England RevolutionBoston Globe, Go Local WorcesterNew England Soccer Today, New England Soccer NewsThe Bent Musket, SBIGoal.com, ProSoccerTalk, Football.comSports Mole, The Sports Network, and the AP. USA Today has a photogallery from the game.

In case you missed it on Sunday night, here’ our postgame wrap with Eli Pearlman-Storch and Mike Servedio:

At the Inquirer, Marc Narducci says it’s time for Andre Blake to start between the posts.

Jim Curtin on when Rais Mbolhi might return: “We’ll see. It’s kind of week by week. He’s taking some time away right now, but we’ll have a decision soon.”

Matthew De George writes, “It’s a virtual certainty that the Algerian has played his last game for the Union. But given his hefty salary and lengthy contract (both officially undisclosed, but believed to occupy sizeable chunks of the Union’s present and future payrolls) reaching a denouement (read: Getting a club to take him off the Union’s hands) seems a prerequisite for other moves.”

At ESPN, Graham Parker observes “there’s a general sense of malaise around the Union that doesn’t quite add up.” He continues,

In some ways, each successive iteration of the Union team has at times masked a broader problem with the organization…That’s a shame, because there’s a real appetite and need for a team in the fourth largest media market in the country to start punching its weight…

The knock in effect is that watching the Union this season it’s been hard to see where they were going to gain true traction, because nothing seems built for the long term…players just seem to cycle through while the incumbent coach tries to build a working team with whoever happens to be at hand.

Watching the last couple of games and adding up my experiences over the years encountering various Philadelphia fans, or their wonderfully cantankerous but truly engaged local press corps or positive impressions of Curtin’s leadership, I can’t question the heart in Philadelphia. Yet it’s becoming a lot harder to see the vision.

Yep.

Power rankings: The Union remain at No. 18 at ESPN: “An encouraging midweek draw against NYCFC gave way to a disheartening defeat against New England. Philly is a counterattacking team, but at present, isn’t good enough defensively to batten down the hatches and try to hold a lead with 30 minutes to go.” MLSGB has the Union at No. 17.

Union loanee Leo Fernandes scored the second goal in New York Cosmos 2-0 win over Tampa Bay Rowdies in Saturday’s home opener. You will recall that Fernandes scored the lone goal in the Cosmos’ season opening win against Fort Lauderdale Strikers on April 4.

Former Union man Freddy Adu made his first start with his new team in Finland, KuPS, going 66 minutes. Ho hum.

Sons of Ben

The Sons of Ben put on what may have been their greatest tifo display ever on Sunday. Here’s a look at it from PSP photographer/videographer Daniel Gajdamowicz:

Union Academy

A busy weekend for the Academy teams. On Saturday, the Union U-14s thumped NJCSA 6-0 with a brace from Nicholas Blacklock, and goals from Femi Awodesu, Iverson Brisma, Christian Contreras, and Andrew Taber. The Union U-14s drew 1-1 with Empire Revolution on Sunday. The U-16s defeated NJCSA, 2-1 on Saturday, with Juan Infante scoring both goals. On Sunday, they defeated Empire Revolution, 6-0, with a brace from Josue Monge, and goals from Lamine Conte, Anthony Fontana, Justin McMaster and Joseph DeZart. At least that’s what I think the score was based on the last tweet from the Academy account, the match report has not been posted as of this writing. The U-18s defeated NJCSA 3-1 on Saturday with goals from Kevin Carvalho, Mohamed Conde, and Morgan Hackworth. On Sunday they played to a scoreless draw with Empire Revolution.

By the way, Sunday’s games took place at the Union practice fields before the New England game. Do that is a great idea, and one that hopefully continues.

Local

In Saturday’s home opener, Harrisburg City Islanders recorded their first victory of the 2015 season, a 2-1 win over FC Montreal. Union loanee Jimmy McLaughlin scored from the penalty spot in the 9th minute after Antoine Hoppenot was taken down in the box, leading to a straight red card for Montreal defender Mitchel Bringolf. Montreal equalized in the 32nd minute, the first goal in franchise history, before Union loanee Antoine Hoppenot scored the winner in 47th minute. Also appearing in the game from the Union were Richie Marquez, and Dzenan Catic, who came on as a sub in the 70th minute. Recaps from Harrisburg City Islanders, Penn Live, Brotherly Game, and FC Montreal. Photogallery at Penn Live.

A “Save Our Soccer Team” petition for the City Islanders is up at iPetitions.

Berks County natives Quincy Thomas and Jack Webber will return to Reading United for the fast approaching 2015 season.

Melissa Phillips has been named assistant coach for the Penn women’s team.

MLS

In the Eastern Conference, first place New York Red Bulls (11 points) defeated San Jose, 2-0. Second place DC (11 points) conceded an equalizer to draw 1-1 with Houston at home. Third place New England (11 points) came from behind on the road to defeat eighth place Philadelphia (6 points), 2-1. Fourth place Columbus (8 points) thumped 10-men Orlando (fifth place, 8 points), 3-0. Sixth place Chicago (6 points) had the weekend off. Seventh place NYCFC (6 points) lost 1-0 at home to Portland. Ninth place Toronto (3 points) lost 3-2 on the road to Dallas. Tenth place Montreal (2 points) had the weekend off.

In the Western Conference, first place Vancouver (16 points) defeated seventh place Salt Lake (9 points) 1-0 on the road. Second place Dallas (13 points) defeated Toronto. Third place LA (11 points) defeated ninth place Kansas City (9 points), 2-1. Fourth place Seattle (10 points) defeated 10th place Colorado (6 points) 3-1 on the road. Fifth place San Jose (9 points) lost 2-0 to NYRB. Sixth place Houston (9 points) drew 1-1 with DC on the road. Eighth place Portland (9 points) defeated NYCFC, 1-0.

At Philly.com, Jonathan Tannenwald looks at the rising TV ratings for MLS games this season.

Average attendance across the league for Week 6 was the lowest of the season at 18,417.

Capital New York wonders if anyone is watching the post-Thierry Henry Red Bulls.

NWSL

First place Portland (6 points) traveled east to defeat ninth place Western New York (0 points), 1-0. Second place Houston (4 points) drew 1-1 with third place Sky Blue (4 points). Fourth place Seattle (3 points) lost 3-2 at home to fifth place Chicago (3 points). Sixth place Washington (3 points) defeated seventh place Kansas City (0 points) 3-1 on the road. Eighth place Boston (0 points) had the weekend off.

US

Viewership for last week’s USA-Mexico game on Fox Sports 1 was the network’s best ever for a soccer game with an average of 806,000 . Overall, the game was seen by 4.5 million viewers between Fox Sports 1, UniMás, and Univision Deportes. Apparently, the game even outdrew the Stanley Cup Playoff game on NBCSN that was broadcast at the same time.

Elsewhere

The latest blather from Sepp Blatter, this time from Russia: “Some people are wanting the World Cup to be taken away from Russia, but we will give one answer to this – we are involved in football and we will not allow politics to get in the way…Everything is going to plan and nothing will get in the way of Russia hosting the best ever World Cup. The economic situation is not the best but I know it will get better.”

The AP reports, “A group of armed men killed eight people in a raid on a Sao Paulo soccer fan club with close links to a notorious former prison, Brazilian police said on Sunday.”

109 Comments

  1. Andy Muenz says:

    At least the STH got to see our names on the bottom of our seats yesterday!
    .
    I hadn’t noticed last week, but I did notice that last night the Algerian flag had been replaced by the Cameroonian flag behind the River End.

    • I’m pretty sure Cameroon was always in there. Now all of the flags moved up one and the SoB flag is on the end.
      .
      I’m curious as to why the US flag is all the way to the left, yet every other flag is in alphabetical order from left to right. Is it because they’re calling it just “America” or because they just wanted to put it first?

      • Andy Muenz says:

        I don’t think they are in alphabetical order. I think Columbia was the next to last one on the right.

      • That’s Venezuela. They’re the same colors, but Colombia doesn’t have the stars in the middle and the stripes are different sizes. Also, there aren’t any Colombian players on the active roster since Valdes went out on loan.

      • Andy Muenz says:

        You’re right. I’m an idiot. Don’t know why I was thinking Nando is Colombian.

      • I think if in a line of foreign flags, the US flag is to be the to the observer’s extreme left per flag etiquette.

      • That’s right. I forgot about the farthest left rule. You’re absolutely correct.

    • I didn’t even notice the names on the seats. Which means I missed out on this little ounce of joy in an otherwise dreary day in Unionville…

  2. ebradlee10 says:

    For me, the day was encapsulated right before the Revs second goal when the ball was cleared very high past midfield and Wenger let it bounce less than five yards from him. It appeared like he didn’t even want to play it at all.

    The loss wasn’t his fault, but that was unacceptable to me.

    • yes it was his fault……he lazily gets back into shape, the ball bounces two yards behind him and here they come…..goal. Then after he misses the head ball……he just walks back after the play…..what the hell is that? I guess no one ever told you the keepers punt CANNOT hit the ground……a big, huge no-no at club, high school, academy, and professional….all a big no-no. Bad things happen in your own end when you misjudge or don’t get a head on the oppositions punt…..fact. Let me ask you, If Wenger heads that ball….how do we get hurt on that play? Thank you, I’ll be here all day………

      • If Wenger heads that ball, how do we get hurt? Hmm… Well, judging by this team’s inability to not only win balls in the air but effectively direct headed balls toward a teammate, and their complete lack of desire to press an attacking opponent, I’d say Wenger heading that ball does little, if anything, to stop the hurting.

      • then your way off…..and probably never played the game passed cyo ball………

    • The loss wasn’t his fault directly, but he had no positive impact on the game. In fact that was really his only impact, so he did nothing to help his case, and should remain on the bench for the foreseeable future.

      • again, YES IT WAS. Then answer my question: If Wenger heads that ball…..does New England get the match winner? Answer: No……just stop. This is getting comical……what the hell do you guys watch during the match?

      • oh, yes……the tifo. Yeah, thats whats really important, I forgot.

      • How can you possibly predict if a goal does or doesn’t get scored based off of one missed header? Don’t know about you, but what I watch is a team who has been out-possessed and out-passed every match with the exception of the first game against Colorado (0-0) and I think Chicago (0-1). Winning one more ball in the air means little for a team who rarely wins them, and usually directs them aimlessly IF they do.

      • you remind me of the clueless parent who says: hey, we lost four nil today, but we had most of the possession and were the better team. Heading, at the academy, college, and professional level is just as important as playing with your feet…..fact.

      • if he heads that ball out….they still don’t score. JJ, your so clueless….could it be because I’ve seen it happen before? At a much higher level than you probably ever played…..YES, I can deduce this by your whole post above……

      • Wow, take it easy. I remember that play and, yes, Wenger made a mistake in not attempting the header. But even if he makes that header and NE doesn’t score on that play… then who is to say that NE wouldn’t have scored on some variant of a different play that resulted from Wenger’s header?!

        The loss was the result of poor team play and management in the second half, not one missed header.

      • Yes poor tactics, naive coaching………and it still probably ended 1-1……..if Wenger heads that ball.

      • Wait Ali, take it back one more step, isn’t it the fault of whomever allowed their goalkeeper to gather the ball and punt it? I blame that player for the subsequent sequence of events!!! Com’on, Wenger stunk, but let’s not try and place all the blame on him for a sequence of events that occurred after a missed header at midfield. We don’t know what would have happened if he had headed the ball, so let’s not get crazy just because a goal occurred shortly after he missed a header. A lot of other things had to go wrong in between that missed header and goal.

      • Enjoy your CYO rec ball people……………..

      • Alicat, I generally appreciate your comments but today you’ve gone a little too far with the insults. This site has some of the most intelligent and passionate fan commenters I’ve encountered online. Just because some of us disagree with you doesn’t mean that we’re somehow less knowledgeable of the game.

      • Jon, respectfully disagree…….and yes, it does. Ask anyone who has played the game at a reasonable and you need to head that ball. When it bounces in behind your levels….you get out of shape and your reeling backward…..that ball bounced was played between two Revs players….than the cross. The missed header lead to that sequence of play. To say it would have happened anyway….or any other hypothetical is nonsense…..what happened….happened!

      • And Jon…….I only became a prick when people got condescending, which I have every right to fire back

      • It must be nice to be so sure of one’s self and to have the confidence to berate anyone who doesn’t agree with you. Anonymity also helps!

      • I think we’re all really frustrated and angry. It’s poisoning some of the comments.

      • The Black Hand says:

        We need to let this one die!!!

      • Yes, it is nice to be this confident JET….from years of fieldwork and personal experience…thats what happens! You didn’t add anything to the argument bro….just insults.

    • Old Soccer Coach says:

      The bounce was collected by NE and began the sequence which led to the goal. It was the mistake that enabled the first goal. Direct responsibility lies with Williams who did not get goal side of Davies. Both he and Edu were taken by surprise by Bunbury dribbling Gaddis, but not getting goal side is Footy 101 mistake supreme for a defender. But had Wenger contested, or won, the ball our defense woul’ve had another second or two to recover.

  3. That TIFO was amazing!!! Bravo Ryan and all the volunteers that made that happen!

    • Agreed! Of course I didn’t think to snap a picture until they starting putting the display away.
      .
      And I did notice the missing Algerian flag as well (through Mbolhi was included in the display). Was wondering if that was a statement, some inside information, or just a question of space.

    • +1 Awesome TIFO. I also saw the banner with the quote from Eric Shertz and the video of him before the game. Was this the anniversary of his passing or was there some other significance?

  4. I hate that the subs were predetermined. How about adapting to, you know, what’s actually happening and not what you plan ahead for.

    • Old Soccer Coach says:

      When your starting lineup includes two who are not fully match fit, the sub has to be planned, and, given the team, doing it the way he did it was the best opportunity we had of pulling the upset on the 9th day.
      .
      Yes, might Eric Ayuk have done better. But what are the effects on Wenger of putting him behind Ayuk? Will it sting Wenger into improving, or will it destroy him? That read only his coaches can make because they know the human being involved personally. We fans do not.

      • While, I get your point. If Wenger’s mental state is so fragile to let Ayuk play over him, who is playing far better, the question arises is it worth it to the team to baby Wenger into getting better? Personally, I think if he can’t handle the competition and can’t step up his play is he worth it at all. Nothing wrong with using him as a suitable substitute if the situation calls for it which yesterday did not.

    • You know Hack was like that as well. What is with Union coaches have a predetermined plan and sticking with it no matter what reality is telling them

  5. That Wenger play, or lack thereof, happened right in front of me and I was and still am pissed about it. However, both goals came from sloppy, lazy , failure to mark by Williams. He had an atrocious day and should be apologizing to the GK all week. Gaddis got beaten like a rented mule, it’s true, but if Williams even makes a middle school effort toward keeping an eye on his man the goals don’t happen. I’m a Williams fan too which is why I’m so upset with his play in this one.

    • If Wenger gets a head on that ball…….we have a point today. All on him. Williams got burned twice yesterday, true. But if Wenger heads that ball…..the second one isn’t an issue

      • Agreed about Wenger 215 though I also think it is safe to say….the law of inevitable eventuality had NE scoring the winner anyway
        .
        Wenger is just one symbol for the club’s ineptitude in this instances.
        .

      • I don’t disagree but in my opinion we’re dealing with the difference between likely and definitely. If Wenger heads the ball, NE most likely doesn’t score. If Williams marks his man (TWICE!!), they definitely don’t score. Both are awful and Wenger’s was more flagrant but Williams gaffs were what really killed them.

      • You are so over-the-top on this. Does Wenger contribute to the poor defense on the play? Yes. Does Ray get beat bad? Yes. Does McCarthy make any play whatsoever on the ball? No. Does Sheanon peak over is right shoulder to located the back-side run? Yes. Does he track the back-side run? No… Who’s to say if Wenger won that header that NE still doesn’t just play in Bunbury on the second ball

      • The Black Hand says:

        If he gets a piece of it, the rest of the sequence is avoided.

      • DING, DING, DING, DING…….we have a winner!

      • And if the butterfly flapped its wings at halftime then the Union would have won…

      • We are speaking of things that actually happened in the match……you are trying to bring up hypotheticals that never happened……give it up.

      • Didn’t u say that NE would not of scored again IF Wenger headed that ball. How is that NOT hypothetical? Gotta love that contradiction logic.

      • In my opinion, the game is sum of all parts and is truly a team sport (which is why I love it so much). Absent of a howler of an own goal, I find that it is very difficult to blame one individual for any loss. I think multiple players were at fault at various points in the lead up to both goals. However, the team parked the bus right from the start of the second half, could not maintain any offensive possession (surprise, surprise), and blew some counterattack opportunities. In my opinion, those factors are just as important in explaining the loss (if not more) than Wenger’s missed header.

      • Doc….it’s not a hypothetical…..he missed the ball…..it bounced to another NE player…who kicked it out wide…crossed it….match over……that happened. I don’t know what you were watching…..but that’s pretty much how that went down. If he heads the ball back at them…we keep a shape and numbers behind the ball…if he heads the ball freakin out of bounds..play stops and we are recovered in shape. The bounce bypassed a level of our guys on the pitch….creating disarray….one reason why Sheanon wasn’t squared to the play the way he should have been. That is not a hypothetical doc…..

      • I watched it you dont have to explain it to me. I didn’t say his missed header was hypothetical. I ment your conclusion of the match is hypothetical. (you said 1-1) You seem to know for an absolute fact it would of ended in a draw if that didn’t happen.

  6. Sheanon did you say something? I missed it. Like you sir, missed it. Twice.
    .
    Ray Ray can jump on the sword for being beaten – no problem that ‘s what leaders do – but offensive minded players are told to beat the first defender and that’s what Bunbury did. In one on one match ups sometimes you win sometimes you lose – that gol is on Williams. Terrible marking.

    • Ray is being classy……..thats all I take from his comments. Again, covering up for lack of quality and heart for his squad.

    • The Black Hand says:

      Ray Gaddis will be the next to go. The talented ones always leave…sigh

      • Agree if Ray doesn’t leave on his own he will be traded or sold cause that is what this team does. Although, Gaddis should put things on himself cause his play was poor yesterday. Yes others were worse. But hell, Gaddis is usually the only one who takes responsibility for his poor play anyway. At least he admits it and doesn’t shy away from the fact that he had a bad day. You deal with it and improve that is the only option.

      • The Black Hand says:

        Gaddis is nasty. He will always be slight, he has his faults…but the kid busts his ass and always looks to improve his game. I respect the shit out of a player like that.
        .
        Yes…we will lose him. Some jackass will think that we need a LB and dangle Ray out there as bait…instead of Sheanon, who busts his ass (sometimes) and doesn’t seem to be improving. Then, in a year or two, Ray Gaddis will be an All-Star RB. We will have a ridiculous situation at LB and a RB, who throws the ball far. It’s this vicious cycle that will keep us sucking SO much…around and around we go

      • Sheanon gets caught up the pitch….a lot……and its nothing new. Both goals last night he should have been squared to the play and he was caught running backwards……I’d ship him for a LB in a heartbreat and keep Gaddis……

      • The Black Hand says:

        I’ve been singing that one for a while now. Unfortunately, the club waited too long. Sheanon’s value isn’t what it was (all of those throw-in assists).

      • lub-dub.

  7. When will Sepp just stop talking? Nothing he says ever helps his cause one bit. The best World Cup ever? Did he not read all of the stories about how big of a mess the Olympics were with unfinished infrastructure and hotel rooms? And separating sports from politics…I agree to an extent, but with serious human rights issues and Russia busy occupying another sovereign nation, he sounds so out of touch with the world around him. Keep getting those checks Sepp.

  8. “present and future payrolls” oh God FO what did you do.
    .
    The Phillies are one of the oldest professional baseball franchises in existence. The Eagles and The Sixers are among the oldest storied franchises in existence. The Flyers over 50 years old. The Union has placed itself at or very near the top of the list for worst signings ever by a Philadelphia franchise in just 6 short years.
    .
    Ladies and gentlemen………..a standing fucking ovation.

    • Flyers are not quite 50. Started 1967-68. Sorry they are my first love.

      • I peg them for 64 all the time. correction noted.

      • I used to love watching the Phillies in the late 90’s-early 2000’s. Even tho they sucked, I could see where they were headed. Wish I could say the same for the Union, but I don’t know where the hell they’re headed.

        FREE THIS FRANCHISE!!!!

      • excellent point and I think that’s also what Graham Parker meant in his article

  9. The Philadelphia Union. 89% Dark Chocolate. So bitter you can’t even taste the sweet.
    .
    That is my NE Corridor billboard.
    .
    The Graham Parker article is a perfect iteration of what we have been saying here for awhile…..
    .
    ….Vision. Philosophy. Plan

    • But Joel…….its all good. They had a tifo yesterday!

      • Why do you keep complaining about the tifo? It was displayed once, before the match even started. People put a lot of hard work into it. True, our team sucks, but does that mean we can’t be happy about any aspect of match day atmosphere, or take pride in how awesome it turned out?

      • I’m not complaining about the tifo….if you think its about the tifo……your missing the point. Its about where peoples priorities are…..thats all. Second, I didn’t know the tifo was commemorating someone that passed…..I just read that and feel like an a$$hole…….for that, I apologize.

      • I still don’t understand the point you are trying to make.

        Also, *you’re

      • My point is……YOU’RE ( happy you condescending dickhead?) an SOB tool. If you don’t get it, you don’t get it. No one trusts you guys….and YOU’RE ( happy again douchebag?) basically are an extension of the FO….prove me wrong.

      • Glad to see you learned some proper grammar, although your manners could use some work. So I’m a tool that works for the front office? Here I thought I was just a supporter, standing behind my team, no matter how poorly they play or how poorly they are managed. Bottom line: if you don’t like the Sons of Ben, then don’t join, and if you are so unhappy with how the team is run that you are driven to insulting your fellow supporters, then don’t support the team anymore. Or maybe channel your anger and aggression toward the proper source – the front office – and try to make a positive difference, instead of leaving antagonistic comments on the internet.

      • The Black Hand says:

        4/20 is not a day for fighting, it’s a day for…what was I talking about? Oh yeah, of course Hillary Clinton does not need democratic competition in the primary…wait…

      • Whoa. Time for cat medications?

  10. The Union Bible says:

    Union Genesis 1:1 – 1:2

    “They did breaketh ground in a shitheap called Chester. The SOB saw it and said it was good.”

    Unionites 2:15

    “The one that is called Nowak shall lead the Unionites into the promised land of hopes and playoffs. The Unionites were then smited by the Houstonians, and they returned to exile.”

    Unionites 3:21-3:29

    “A great madness did befall the one called Nowak, and he brought upon the Unionites a great South American Plague of Pajoys and Porfirios. It indeed was a dark time of the Unionites. Nowak was cast out. The Unionites prayed that the one true savior, John Worthy of Hack, would deliver unto the Unionites that which was promised to them; a team that played to a level worthy of the devotion of the Unionites.”

    Second Letter of Hackworth to the Phaithful 1:19 – 1:26

    “Thou shalt play Philly tough. Thou shalt not have any tactics. Thou shalt play Keon Daniel. Thou shalt not look like a real soccer team. Thou shall win the draft. Thou shalt not play those players. Thou shalt utter YAAL and WSSM to the heavens.”

    Book of the Cup that is Open 5:53 – 5:58, 5:66-5-68

    “And the Evil Sigi did open the seventh seal, and revealed unto the Unionites he who is Obafemi. The Unionites replied in unison ‘Oh shit.’ A young and inexperienced son of a curtain maker, named James, did send onto the field of battle a diminutive warrior, Daniel of the Spanish Cross. To which the Unionites replied in union ‘Oh Shit.’

    “With a mighty blow the French Legionnaire did striketh at the heart of the Great Seattlian God Sounderesh. Though its’ arms are numerous and strong, it has but one goal, but one heart. With a cacophonous clang of the goalpost, Sounderesh knew the Unionites were then to be devoured.”

    Book of Snakeiwicz 6:15 – 6:29

    “Behold! Your new God! We shalt call him Rais! Hallelujah Hallelujah! He has traveled from Algeria, and Poland, and France, and Bulgaria, and Russia, and Norway, and Australia, and Brazil spreading his gospel of Bitch Face to the masses. It is a new day Unionites. Rejoice!”

    Book of Misallocation 154789:1

    “And the one called Rais was tossed from the Cliff of Union Despair. And there was much rejoicing.”

  11. How is no one asking about the crisis of confidence that Andrew Wenger is having?
    .
    This is a guy who was being raved about and he’s not only lost his position, but he looks terrified on the field. Allowing that ball to drop right beside him, which led to the game winning goal is so far from professional. I’ve never seen a Union player dressed down the way he was by Edu, yet not one question in this presser about it.

    • The Black Hand says:

      This is another red flag. JC is not a manager, yet. It will get worse.

    • Andrew Wenger will be the Freddy Adu of this era’s MLS.
      He has raw talent, but no clue how to actually play and coaches and fans will keep saying “If he does this, he will be phenomenal”
      Wenger seems like a guy who would like to just dribble around the street at recess.
      Last year, Curtin put him on the outside as a way to isolate his skill set and limit the risk… much like everyone has done with Adu.
      No hope for Wenger regardless of the coach.

    • Wenger reminds me of so many other big, strong guys who melt at the first sign of resistance. He appears soft and with no heart – I can see why Montreal shipped him out the first chance they could.

      The reaming by Edu was unusual, but even more unusual was the way the fans in our section got on him. I’ve never seen that before.

      There’s a lot of talk about Philly guys and Philly tough – he doesn’t appear to have heard it.

  12. Joe Canino says:

    I hope management sees the crowd responding to the new keeper John ! I understand that a lot of money is invested in Rais but the team seems to trust John , maybe too much at times but it’s a start. GET MORE LOCAL NEWS coverage! The city is a looking for a team to cheer for this summer!

  13. “repeatedly tasked with hauling his team uphill.” – Graham Parker.
    .
    Jim Curtin. A modern day Sisyphus.

  14. I unfortunately felt absolute and utter despair due to JC during this game. I turn to my 9 year old as the revs start to sub and say look they (the revs) are putting in the pieces early to try and win this one. hopefully we don’t take our foot off the gas. Come on no one would make stupid subs at that point. minutes later we are doulble subbing and bunkering in. reducing our chance for possession and killing our ability to counter. I say “we will be lucky if they only score one” and there it goes in the net.
    I am no soccer genius but how in anyones twisted sense were we going to tie much less win with that lineup change. JC kills me. saves subs when we need to waste time uses back to back subs early when we should wait. If people were tired/not match fit why not use ayuk to try and stretch the field and maintain some possesion.
    In a sport where so few management decisions can be made during the physical game how do we seem to mess this up over and over again. As i always say certainly I would fair no better but i am sure if I brought the same inept decision making to my work I would not have a job to go to.

    • OneManWolfpack says:

      This happens because we have a soccer coach, and not a football manager. I borrowed this from The Black Hand above – I love it. It perfectly describes the situation.

      • Soccer. Still the game du jour in these parts and without question the most upsetting aspect of this whole cluster fuck that is the Philadelphia Union.
        .
        Everywhere in all directions, football is what is being displayed, whether nascent or more advanced in thinking and demonstration – – from sea to shining sea, across the pond, below the equator – japan and china for hells sake – but not here folks. Here, where it is Always Sunny – we have soccer – the rest of the country is improving in its sophistication moving towards the beautiful game which is futbol not soccer.
        .
        We got soccer. And it is a shit sandwich of which we are undeserving because it seems rudderless, misguided and without any clear logic. Graham Parker’s article on ESPN is a lovely stroke and dead solid perfect about this club- and now the rest of the country can read about how much a mess it is.
        .
        This team has my undying love …. but as I’ve said in a post or two along the way, sometimes the alcoholic family member has to be turned away, no matter how much it pains you. You just stand and watch and hope and pray for the best they have a spiritual/cultural awakening that comes with a change of ways more in line with their (our) highest good.
        .
        FREE THIS FRANCHISE.

      • The Black Hand says:

        Mighty fine bunch of words, amigo!

      • Cue the SalPal audio cut from 975: “I agree”

      • NE had almost 70-80% of the possession to that point. JC decided he needed to try close down the passing lanes. It didn’t work b/c he didn’t have the player needed. He’s in Orlando (or our starting CB). He didn’t have many options to change the offense to create possession than what was already out there. Ayuk for LeToux probably would’ve been better than AW but…meh.

      • The Black Hand says:

        He should have waited it out a bit. Every other match he waits forever…this had to be the match where he rushed his subs. Yeah, he didn’t have much to pull from (his fault) but, ultimately, Jim Curtin got it wrong…and he’s been doing it every match. When do you fold ’em?? He’s not prepared to manage…

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