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Union draft news roundup

Photo: Nicolae Stoian


With some time to recover from yesterday’s SuperDraft excitement, we can now look at some of the early reaction.

A good place to start is our very own draft review. In addition to, well, reviews, the piece includes links to each players stats as well as video of them in action.

In our review, we give the Union a B for its draft. Goal.com gives the Union a C.

Peter Nowak on the selections:

  • “It is good for all of us that Zac, Michael and Levi will join our team, because we believe that those guys can help us. Not maybe today, maybe not tomorrow, but at the end of the day they can help us.”
  • “We believe in Zac. He is still growing. He has time to be better. He is on the (U-20) national team right now and the last couple of years there weren’t too many goalkeepers coming from the national team, the U20 program, and he’s the one for the future.”
  • “First of all it was very surprising for us to see Michael [Farfan] over there. At the combine he didn’t shine that much, because the combine is different from playing with your team every single game. Our coaching staff did a lot of research and at the end of the day, when we saw he was available, we made the decision.”
  • “Levi [Houapeu] has a great explosiveness and everybody saw that at the combine. He can play a bunch of positions and a guy like that needs to be in an environment like ours. At the end of the day, it will help him tremendously. We watched him, we had an interview with him and we’re very impressed with his overall appearance.”

The Union website has video of an interview with MacMath.

Michael Farfan says “I like to keep the ball – I’m a technical player and I’m creative…(I can play) out on the flanks, right mid, left mid – even in the center as an attacking midfielder.” You had me at “flanks.”

“I’m already falling in love with Union fans,” says Levi Houapeu. “They’re great. I’m just excited right now and really trying to embrace the moment.”

CBS Philly talks to MacMath in this article, which also includes a link to audio of the interview.

The first thing MacMath did when he spoke after being picked by the Union was thank the Sons of Ben. “Hey, I wanted to win over the fans. My father gave me the advice to do this. He knows Philly. He was right.” MacMath’s dad is from Philly and Zack has already spent a lot of time here.

MacMath is aware of the Mondragon rumors. “I’ve heard reports that they are going to sign another keeper. But I think it’s a great opportunity for me to work with veterans and fight for a spot.”

It was lost on no one that the Union did not select any defenders in the draft. Does that mean the Union will be signing some veterans? Says Nowak, “They’re coming. They’re coming soon.”

At the draft, Corey Hertzog, who I think it is safe to say many Union fans hoped would be drafted to Philly, didn’t appear particularly stoked to be selected by the Energy Drinks. In this piece from the Star Ledger, Hertzog says, “I just want to play soccer. At this point it really didn’t matter where I played.” At least he’ll get to play with one of his heroes.


The Goalkeeper blog at Philly.com will be covering today’s WPS Draft. Be sure to check in there for updates.

Lori Lindsey, Megan Rapinoe, Amy Rodriguez and the out of contract Heather Mitts have been named to the USWNT squad that will be playing in the Four nations tournament in China.


Five Akron players went in the first round of the draft.

MLSSoccer looks at the SuperDraft and how it has grown into a pretty spectacular event. The piece describes the importance of the presence of supporters groups in creating atmosphere and the rivalry on Thursday between Union supporters and DC United and Energy Drink supporters. Take it from me, the SoBs kicked ass.

ESPN names its Top Ten MLS Draft Picks of All-Time.

Is Robbie Savage going to play for Vancouver?


It’s official: The US will play Argentina on March 26 at the New Meadowlands. On March 29 they will play Paraguay at LP Field in Atlanta. The Argentina match will be live on ESPN2, so you’ll be able to watch after you get back from the Union’s home opener against Vancouver, which starts at 4pm.

Abby Wambach will miss the USWNT’s trip to China for the Four Nations Tournament because of a heel injury.


The head of the International Olympic Committee says that the 2022 Winter Olympics will not be moved to accommodate the World Cup, should the World Cup moved to the winter.

That news should suit Qatar just fine. Asian Football Confederation president Mohamed bin Hammam has rejected suggestions made by Sepp Blatter and others to move to a winter World Cup in 2022. “We submitted a bid suggesting we are going to be ready in June and July. And we said we are going to face all the challenges and we are going to meet all the requirements. Our focus is June, July. It is never our interest to change one week beyond June and July.”

Bin Hammam has also rejected the suggestion made by Michel Platini and others that the Gulf region might share in hosting the 2022 World Cup. “Qatar can stand alone and organize the competition by itself.”

Bin Hammam, who may run against Blatter for the FIFA presidency, added that the structure of Fifa is “not helpful or useful to our world.

Blatter has also come under criticism for saying in an interview with CNN that FIFA executive committee members “vote more with their heart than they vote with their head.”

Blatter also says FIFA will use goal-line technology if it works.

Byron Moreno, the former referee involved in Italy’s controversial elimination from the 2002 World Cup, has pleaded guilty to heroin smuggling charges.

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