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The things we know: An open letter to Union players

Photo: Nicolae Stoian

We know, guys. Trust me. We know.

We know you played your hearts out Sunday.

We know you left everything on the field in those ridiculously exciting, maddening, painful closing minutes.

We know you had to overcome your manager’s bad decisions. Again.

We know that five-man back line would’ve been a good experiment in June. On Sunday, it was sheer coaching arrogance.

We know some of you have been put in positions that make it difficult for you to succeed.

Migs, we know it’s rough, but it’s just not your year. We know Andre Hainault was your mark. We also know Brad Davis was perfect.

Brian Carroll, we know you’re lost in some of these formations but dominant when you can just do what it is that you do.

Danny Mwanga, we know you’ve barely played lately due to injury and coach’s decision. We know you’ll be back.

Roger Torres, we know you played great for 26 minutes. We wish you played for 76. Your moment is Thursday. Show brilliance, but play within your limits.

And you, Union Jack, we know. You were that close. THAT close. Forget the Irish lobby. We’re giving you your nickname back.

We know all three of you deserved more time this year. We still hate Fat Chooch.

We know that was a miserably bad lineup and formation. We knew something like it was coming. We just didn’t know what.

We know what Peter Nowak’s about, but there’s not much more to say about it now. It’s like salting the wound.

We know some of you guys read our site. We appreciate it.

And we appreciate how hard you play, even if we try to maintain objectivity about it.

You have one more game.

You can win it. 

You’ve won at Robertson Field both times you’ve played there. It’s a small, miserable excuse for a soccer stadium, and it’s the last time you’ll have to cross those football lines because a new stadium opens next season. We know you can keep a perfect record there. And if you don’t, nobody will blame you anyway. Le Toux, Califf and company: Thank you. You’ve put in a great season.

But your season doesn’t have to end Thursday.

Leave Sunday behind. 

Go score more goals than the other guys. And have fun doing it.


  1. They are gonna win. Doesnt that header off the bar accurately reflect Union Jack’s season? Just off. I wouldnt be surprised if he’s gone next year.

  2. Awesome letter. Gave me goosebumps. You’ve put into words what all Union fans are feeling. Thank you!

  3. Torres can’t start. It’s been shown a few times this year, when he starts, he plays terribly. He’s best as a sub, if you can’t see that him and Mwanga are just super-subs, you have to re-evaluate this team.
    Mwanga can start, but he’s definitely a spark off the bench to change the pace for tired defenders. Same with JackMac, his speed makes him dangerous.
    If we’re ever down a goal, the 3 players we need to bring ONTO the field are Mwanga, Jack, and Adu.
    3 heavily attack minded players who can play in a 4-3-3 with ease.
    This is all fact, if you don’t see it, well open your eyes.

  4. From my perspective, Torres is much better as a starter. Yes, he has scored some goals as a sub. But too often does he seem to be forcing lobs over the top (although he was better in the playoff game). I say we hand him the keys to the offense early on, flanked by Marfan and Adu (yes, Adu since Keon is gone and Mapp is shit). Then start Seba and Union Jack up top. Mwanga is the super-sub who truly has looked much better off the bench. Even when he starts, he tends to fade over time. Danny in the 60th minute is my thought with Okugo coming on for Adu if we get the lead. Sadly, we appear to have no other subs worth playing with Pauno likely out.

    • I think people get too critical of his lobs over the top. Torres is trying to create a scoring opportunity. If one of those lobs over the top is just right, we get a goal. That has happened enough times for me to be confident it can happen in a 90 minutes appearance by the little guy. This goes all the way back to Le Touxs first goal against DC united (a beautiful lob/cross heade in). This is a game of one or two goals. Roger may get dispossessed occasionally, and he may send some bad passes into the other teams defending third, but he doesnt create scoring chances for the other team and he often creates them for us, so I think he should be on the field.

  5. I don’t know how you go into this game without starting the most attacking-oriented personnel you have. If you think Torres and Little Mac fit that description (and I do), then how can you not start them? It’s better that this game turns into a run-n-gun shootout, then a draw.

  6. CityHeroesSpursZeros says:

    I like Torres to start. Lets him go balls to the wall and sub with Adu when he gets tired/beat up. Bring in Mwanga as a sub to take advantage of tired legs.

    Here is my hopeful prediction, Seba (pk), Some goon scores off a B davis cross, Mwanga scores as a sub to make it to extra time. Then it is anybodies game.

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