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What needs fixin’, more news

Photo: Nicolae Stoian


With an unexpected weekend off, the Union have some extra time to work on some recent problems, like scoring, the tendency to bunker down with a lead, clearing the box, and so on.

Peter Nowak says about the offense:

  • “I think we need to do some things automatically. We think too much during the games right now. We are conservative going forward because, in some capacity, we aren’t sure we’re going to make it back. We’re a very good recovering team. If you have enough fitness, enough power, and you are mentally capable of doing certain things, you have to do them without hesitating. The [offensive] pressuring we work on, it was our strong suit last year.”
  • “We want to do certain runs, certain combinations, in an automatic way, which means repetition. We need to come back to basics, the way we trained in the preseason, and make it work automatically. Initiating the runs, initiating the [passing] windows, that’s the stuff we have to get back to, because we didn’t do a good job in the last couple of weeks.”

Nowak on clearing the box:

  • “We mentioned that, we recognized that, that it’s not only the first ball that’s important, but the second and third, and it happened again [against Seattle]. We conceded two goals against D.C. like this, and another goal against Seattle. It’s not like we didn’t talk about it. That’s my main problem with that. If we don’t talk about, I’ll blame myself…We have to prevent [second chance opportunities] and be better.”

Nowak on the tendency to bunker down with a 1–0 lead:

  • “It’s going into a shell defensively – the ball keeps coming back into the box. We also need to have that ability to go forward. Especially when you’re winning 1-0, if space is open, you need to score a second goal, a third goal.”
  • “It’s backfiring, [the idea that] 1-0 is good enough. That’s the main issue we have right now. We’re gonna fix it. I’m gonna fix it—there’s no question about that.”

Five games in and ten points. Marc Narducci says this year’s Union is much steadier than last year’s team.

The Union drop to no. 4 in the SBI Power Rankings, tied with the Energy Drinks.

From the Union website, the skinny on Gabriel Farfan’s dislocated right pinky toe.

Did you know Stefani Miglioranzi and Stefani Miglioranzi lead the Union in fouls called? That the Union is second in home attendance and last in corner kicks? The Brotherly Game looks at some stats.

Sueñ0 MLS 2011 kicks of at YSC Sports in Wayne on Saturday at 9am. Some 400 players are signed up for the tryouts, part of nationally televised competition on Univision to find the best undiscovered soccer talent in the country. Walk-up registration is encouraged. The Union’s Kyle Nakazawa and Ryan Richter will be on hand between 1pm and 2:30pm.

More on the Villanova football at PPL Park nonsense as somebody in West Virginia says to “Say no to ‘Nova.” If that means they won’t play at PPL, than I agree.


MLS president Mark Abbott says the league has no intention of adopting promotion/relegation, a single table rather than conferences, aligning the league schedule with the international calendar. He also said the league wants the 20th MLS franchise to be in New York and that doesn’t necessarily mean the Cosmos. Abbott also praised the Union.

With their 4–0 pounding of DC United last night, the Energy Drinks have scored seven goals in their last two games. Despite the fact that his team was beaten by the Union, coach Hans Backe says DC United are the best team the Energy Drinks have played this season.

Thierry Henry may have scored a brace, but everyone is talking about Juan Agudelo’s stoppage time goal.

Goal.com looks a the increasing number of soccer hotbeds accompanying MLS expansion. Philadelphia is included.

More on the emerging fan culture from a San Jose perspective. Much of what is discussed in the article will be very familiar to Union supporters. Says one San Jose supporter, “We’re not going to apologize to Soccer Mom.”

I’m not sure how this website comes up with its numbers, but for the first time, an MLS team—Real Salt Lake—is listed as one of the top 25 club teams in the world. RSL comes in at no. 22, ahead of Lyon, Schalke and Villarreal.

Jonah Freedman argues it is time for many young American players abroad to return to the States. “This is a new message to departed MLS alums and Americans who went directly to Europe: Major League Soccer is no longer the step back that many once thought it was, and a European league not the Shangri-La everyone thinks it is. Competitively, you are doing yourself just as much good—and in many cases, better—by coming home or remaining here in the first place.”

Stuart Holden is excited to bring Bolton to Houston this summer, even if he won’t be able to play.


Brad Friedel and Oguchi Oneywu are the highest paid US soccer players in Europe.

Claudio Reyna, U.S. Soccer’s Youth Technical Director, talks to Soccer America in this very interesting article about the ongoing development of youth soccer coaching in the US.

USMNT assistant coach Mike Sorber talks about the upcoming game against Spain, the Gold Cup and more.


Real Madrid have been given a replica of the Copa del Rey to put on display at the Bernabeu. “I always make a spare in case something unexpected happens, lest (King Juan Carlos) be left with nothing to give out,” said Federico Alegre, the Madrid jeweler who made the trophy, “The spare has been ready for a long time.” He described the damage to the original trophy: “It was a fall of five meters, a bus ran over it, it has lost pieces, the base is destroyed and the rest is dented. I am not sad or even angry. These things happen, it will be another anecdote to be told in the future.

Police have tried to calm the fears of Celtic supporters ahead of Sunday’s Old Firm derby after Celtic manager Neil Lennon and prominent Celtic supporters receive parcel bombs. Lennon says threats will not force him out of the Celtic job.

A day after Tottenham’s Gareth Bale was named the Professional Football Association Player of the Year, the Football Writers’ Association names West Ham’s Scott Parker the Player of the Year.

Footy on the Telly™

Friday, April 22
Nottingham Forest v Leicester 12pm FSP
Leeds v Reading 2:30pm FSP
Necaxa v Pumas 9pm Fox Deportes
Colorado Rapids v Seattle Sounders 9:30pm FSC

Saturday, April 23
Everton v Manchester United 7:30am ESPN2
Cardiff City v QPR 7:30am FSP
Eintracht Frankfurt v Bayern Munich 9:30am GolTV
Kaiserslautern v Schalke 9:30am ESPN Deportes
Liverpool v Birmingham 10am FSC
Aston Villa v Stoke City 10am FSP
Real Madrid v Valencia 12pm ESPN Deportes
Wolves v Fulham 12pm FSP
Chelsea v West Ham 12:30pm FSC
Barcelona v Osasuna 2pm GolTV
Montpellier v Marseille (French Cup) 2:30pm FSP
Juventus v Catania 3pm FSC
San Jose Earthquakes v Chivas USA 4pm Telefutura
Real Sociedad v Athletic Bilbao 4pm ESPN Deportes
Independiente Medellin v America de Cali 4pm GolTV
Tottenham v West Brom 5pm FSC
Roma v Chievo 5pm FSP
Queretaro v Pachuca 6pm Telefutura
Santos v Ponte Preta 6pm GolTV
Inter Milan v Lazio 8pm FSC
Santos Laguna v San Luis 8pm Telefutura
Monterrey v Puebla 8pm Telemundo
Atlas v Jaguares 10pm Telefutura
Los Angeles Galaxy v Portland Timbers 11pm FSC

Sunday, April 24
Blackpool v Newcastle 6:30am FSP
PSV Eindhoven v Feyenoord 8:30am ESPN Deportes
Brescia v AC Milan 9am FSC
Wolfsburg v Cologne 10:30am GolTV
Bolton v Arsenal 11am FSC
Malaga v Santander 11am ESPN Deportes
Millwall v Preston North End 12:30pm FSP
Athletico Madrid v Levante 1pm GolTV
Toluca v Tecos 1pm Telemundo
Morelia v Tigres 1pm Fox Deportes
Portsmouth v Swansea City 2:30pm FSP
Sevilla v Villarreal 3pm GolTV
Lorient v Lille 3pm FSC
Sao Paulo v Portuguesa 3pm GolTV
America v Atlante 6pm Telefutura
Atlanta Beat v Western New York Flash 6pm FSC

Monday, April 25
Manchester City v Blackburn 3pm ESPN2


  1. soccer dad who says, “You suck soccer mom/’family friendly’ environment!” i’ve taken my daughter to games in the river end and will do so again.

  2. also, not sure how you could put man u up over barca(unless they go further in the champions league) and rsl should def not be in that top 25 list. better than all but 4 in england/3 in italy/3 in spain/3 in germany??????

  3. I’m so glad to see Red Bull highlights here, Thanks! Speaking of Red Bulls, looks like we surrendered first in the East…two dropped point against SSFC were a huge loss. I imagine we will also drop a spot in power rankings next week.

  4. That Agudelo goal is insane; very, very impressive.

  5. And for what it’s worth, El Pescadito didn’t win the latest MLS GOTW voting. Somewhere, Eli is doing cartwheels. But to think that Jorge Perlaza, a player linked with the Union during the preseason, won it makes me vomit a little bit in the back of my mouth.

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