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The Dragon and Sir Becks, more news

Union

With lone Union representative Faryd Mondragon on a MLS roster coached by and littered with Energy Drinks and other all-too-easy ho-hum selections, not to mention that fact that the Dragon isn’t starting, does anyone around these parts really give a toss about the All-Star Game?

At first, the only kind of Philly related All-Star story Union fans seem to be able to expect is a retread of the Beckham/Mondragon meeting at the 1998 World Cup kind of story MLSsoccer.com trotted out when the Union traveled to LA way back in April. Yes, that was nearly four months ago, but is that all you’ve got? At least the current piece highlights what a nice guy Mondragon is.”I think the world of soccer is just that: friendships.” Stop it, Faryd, you’re killing me softly.

Crikey, even in Kerith Gabriel’s piece in the Daily News about Mondragon being the only Union player at the All-Star Game, Beckham gets a longer quote than the Dragon. Hey, Marc Narducci, where’s the Beckham reference in your piece of fluff? Rewrite!

Not so fast! Fox Soccer talked to “more than 30 MLS starters from 15 different MLS teams, including seven players playing in Wednesday’s game, to find out who the players think have been the league’s best” for a MLS Players selection for the All-Star Game. Mondragon gets the nod for starting keeper while Sebastien Le Toux gets an honorable mention for right midfield and Carlos Ruiz gets an honorable mention for forward. Still no Danny Califf, Carlos Valdes. Sheanon Williams, or Brian Carroll, for that matter. Hmm.

More on Mondragon at the All-Star Game from Chris Vito. The piece is refreshingly Beckham-free and notes that Mondragon “sounded both disgusted and sincere” when talking about being selected while other Union players were not also selected.

The Brotherly Game tries to bring some clarity to the Union’s roster situation following the departure of Thorne Holder but more questions are raised than answers, as evidenced by the comments area. It’s not tBG’s fault, its just that so much of the information needed for real clarity is outdated, incomplete, murky, contradictory or simply unknown.

Even though the Union haven’t played a league match in ten days, the power rankings continue—hooray! Incredibly (to me anyway), the Union move up one spot to no. 4 at MLSsoccer.com. The reasoning is sound: “The Union seem to be getting better and closer as a unit each week, and have gotten results with starters and subs both.” At Soccer America, the Union remain at no. 4. At SBI, ESPN and Goal.com, the Union stay at no. 5.

Garfan says of Marfan’s goal against Real Madrid, “As soon as he picked his head up, I knew what he was doing.” And that is awesome.

Independence

Ahead of tonight’s away game between tied for first place Philadelphia Independence and Boston Breakers there is this rousing video from Donna Widmann.

[vimeo]http://vimeo.com/26891186[/vimeo]

Jeff Kassouf looks at the bump WPS is experiencing since the Women’s World Cup. “Those types of numbers will not last very long, but they provide a glimpse of hope for a league that was more than in need of one.”

Local

Reading United’s fantastic 12–3–2 season comes to an end after they fall 1–0 to Jersey Express in the play-in to the PDL Eastern Conference Playoffs. Reading had made it to the final 16 in each of the previous three years.

The 2011 All-Star jersey. Whatev.

MLS

Grrrrrr! The MLS All-Stars want paypack against Manchester United for last year’s 5–2 humiliation. So, according to ESPN, that means All-Star coach Hans Backe has devised a plan. “Just don’t ask Backe what that plan is.” Wouldn’t want to give United a leg up, you know.

While the focus is on Red Bull Arena tonight, Harrison is also home to the “chain-link crucible” known as “The Courts.”

35-year-old Mexican midfielder Pavel Pardo has signed with Chicago.

Philadelphia-native Dan Gargan has been released by Toronto. I guess that means I won’t have to get in the middle of a fight between some of his local pals and a Union supporter like the last time Toronto was in town.

Wow. England’s Daily Mirror has a piece on MLS. Shame it merely repeats the same old pap about the Pacific Northwest being the future of the league.

US

Following their disappointing showing in the Gold Cup final, the USMNT drops six spots to no. 30 in the FIFA World Rankings. Strangely, Mexico drops eleven spots to no. 20.

Elsewhere

Barcelona posts a loss of $13.5 for the 2010-2011 season, which is equal to just over five MLS teams in salary cap money.

The chairman of the European Club Association, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, has called for a club-led “revolution” against the “corrupt people” who run FIFA. “Sepp Blatter is saying [that he’s cleaning up shop] but the fact that no one believes him tells you everything you need to know. I’m not optimistic because they believe the system is working perfectly as it is. It’s a money machine, World Cup after World Cup. And for them, that’s more important than serious and clean governance.”

FIFA has given representatives of the Caribbean Football Union until Wednesday to reveal what they know about allegations of bribery or “be subject to the full range of sanctions.

FIFA vice president Prince Ali Al Hussein says the Asian Football Confederation should waste no time in electing a new president, even though the banned former president Mohamed Bin Hammam wants everyone to wait for his appeal to be heard.

4 Comments

  1. Forever hate MLS roster rules.

  2. I don’t give a toss about the all-star game. I couldn’t care less about Man U, and I couldn’t care less about an MLS all-star team that snubbed players from our first place team.

    After the Gold Cup, women’s World Cup and Union MLS and international friendly matches, I could use a short break from soccer anyway.

  3. Montenegro is definitely better than Mexico

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