Daily news roundups / Featured

A tricky question, locals on Hermann Trophy Watch List, more news

Photo: Paul Rudderow

Philadelphia Union

At ProSoccerTalk, Steve Davis examines a fundamental conundrum now facing the Union: Is it more important that the Union allow Zac MacMath to gain experience and learn from his mistakes as a young goalkeeper even at the possible cost of an admittedly slim chance of making the playoffs or should he be sat in an attempt to to secure an increasingly unlikely playoff spot? It’s a tricky question, but is it a far one? Feel free to share your thoughts below.

Sheanon Williams thought Bakary Soumare’s first start was a good one. “Baky is a big boy. I usually call him ‘The Moose’ in our locker room. He’s going to be a big part of our team going forward. I know Amobi is itching to get back to center midfield, but it’s good for Baky to get into a real game. He hasn’t played in awhile and he did well, especially in the end when they bombarded us with their attack. He was one-on-one most of the second half and did really well.”

Soumare said, “I was a little rusty, obviously, but I’m glad I got to play.”

John Hackworth said of Chandler Hoffman’s start, “Chandler’s a guy who came in and obviously he has some big shoes to fill with Jack Mac (out due to suspension), but he did a good job… He put in a good effort tonight. He’s been out for a long time. It’s a recurring theme: It’s a young team, young players, getting good experience.”

Carlos Valdes said he’s “Very happy to be back” with the Colombian National Team. (I gotta say, any kind of pleasure I felt for Valdes, particularly in view of the disappointment I felt that he would miss Sunday’s game, kind of disappeared once it became apparent that he had been called up for a camp rather than an actual game.)

Keon Daniel will be with Trinidad & Tobago when they face Canada in a friendly in Florida on Wednesday. Here’s a preview.

In the latest power rankings, the Union are at No. 15 at Fox Soccer. That’s where Soccer America and SI have them also, dropping two spots from No. 13. Goal.com kindly keeps the Union at No. 13.

Sunday’s loss in rhyme, from the Brotherly Game.


KYW 1060 has an interview with Dan Gargan, the local lad who has played in MLS since 2005 and is now with Chicago Fire.

Heading into the last weekend of USL PRO play, Harrisburg City Islanders can secure a playoff spot with a four point road trip to the West Coast. Currently in seventh place, Harrisburg face LA Blues twice over the weekend, on Friday and on Sunday.

Quite a few players with local connections are on the 2012 MAC Hermann Trophy Watch List:

On the men list, there’s Sammy Adjei (F, Iona College, from Newark NJ), Will Bates, F, Virginia, played for Reading United), Brendan Burgdorf (F, Bucknell), Leonardao Fernandes (M, Stony Brook, played for Reading United), Steve Neumann (F, Georgetown, played for Reading United and from New Hope, PA), Ansger Otto (F, Iona College, from Willingsboro, NJ), Jonny Raj (D, Fairfield, played for Reading United), Pedro Ribiero (M, Coastal Carolina, played for Reading United), Eric Schoenle (D, West Virginia, played for Reading United and from Yardley, PA), and Paul Wyatt (M, James Madison, played for Reading United).

On the women’s list, there’s Kelsey Haycook (F, La Salle, Point Pleasant, NJ), Maya Hayes (F, Penn State), Kaitlyn Kerr, (M, Duke, from Bensalem, PA), Christine Naim (M, Penn State), Renee Washington (M, La Salle, Ewing, NJ), and Colleen Williams (F, Dayton, Titusville, NJ).

Brian Clarhaut has been named assistant coach of the Temple University men’s team.

Soccer America previews the Penn State women’s team, who are looking for their 15th straight Big Ten title.

The Northeast Times has the most detailed account of the proposed Philadelphia Sports Zone project, which recently announced a partnership with Celtic FC. The article notes that when the plan for a sports facility was first announced in 2010 along with some kind of involvement from AC Milan, a location on Torresdale Avenue in Upper Holmesburg was planned. In 2011, another location on Torresdale Avenue became the focus but the PSZ bid for the land lost out to Holy Family University. At present, no location has been finalized. Maggie Coughlan, one of the PSZ founders, said at a press conference on Friday, “On the land acquisition, we’re working with several people now,” adding, “The Celtic academy will be started here in this country by the end of this year.”


Chicago’s Marco Pappa has signed a pre-contract with Eredivisie team SC Heerenveen, who he will join on Jan. 1.

Attendance was way down this year for the World Football Challenge.

Women’s Soccer

Isportsweb.com says “a men and women’s club partnership is the best strategy to promote female clubs.”


MLSsoccer.com says it looks like it will be Geoff Cameron and Maurice Edu starting in the center of the US defense against Mexico on Wednesday. ¡Ay, caramba!

Here’s a quote sheet from Jurgen Klinsmann’s press conference on Sunday following the announcement of the USMNT roster for Wednesday’s friendly in Mexico City.

At Goal.com, Seth Vetelney says Mexico’s success since the World Cup—U-17 World Cup champions, U-20 World Cup third place, Gold Cup champions, Pan Am Games champions, Toulon tournament champions, Milk Cup champions, Olympic gold medalists—will prove good for the USMNT in the long run.

Yael Averbuch’s blog at the New York Times wonders how long the USWNT can remain at No. 1.

Hope Solo’s autobiography comes out today.

The New Yorker shows its appreciation of the USWNT.


adidas is allowing fans to vote on the name of the ball for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. The candidates are Carnavalesca, Bossa Nova, Brazuca.

What a miss (and nice jersey, you goof):


  1. James "4-3-3" Forever says:

    I would not mind sitting MacMath for a game or two, let him rest, get his mind straight. It worked out well for Hamid and Johnson. MacMath needs it though all those people questioning his career and already claiming he will amount to nothing are going overboard.
    And also, I think it’s unfair to frame this in the context of a playoff hunt. The Union were on the outside looking in since Day 1. From the midway point us making the playoffs would have been a miraculous turn around, not some forgone conclusion. Throwing “playoff failure” into the same sentence as MacMaths struggles is pretty unfair considering.

    • I say let him play. Let him work through whatever he is going through and gel with his new back line.

      But yea I agree throwing Zac under the bus for missing the playoffs isn’t fair. Odds are this team wasn’t making the playoffs no matter what.

      Though if they do make the playoffs I totally knew they could do it all along.

  2. If Zack is the number one and he’s fit, he should play. If he’s not, or he’s not, he should sit, and not just for a game or two. I think he’s still the number one and he needs to play.

  3. If Valdez was just their for camp, why did we release him so early? I thought we only had to release players 48 hours before a friendly?

  4. Let Zach play it out….show confidence in the kid….playoffs are not going to happen now…these are all reserve league like games for the U from here on out….build towards a better start in 2013. Overcoming the Novak start was going to be very very difficult but the boys are showing signs of progress.

  5. MacMath should continue to play. The Union is not making the playoffs. So whether he plays or not is irrelevant. It is relevant that he should not have been starting this season in the first place. It all goes back to Nowak and the ownership group’s unwillingness to spend on quality players. There is a “will make do” attitude coming from the front office. Well that’s not good enough. This is Philly. You either play to win or don’t play at all.
    Until the Union starts paying for DP quality players or explains why it is not doing so, I don’t intend to spend money on the Union (especially merchandize).

    • PS. Its not like we have better options than McMath. Let the guy play and build confidence. He has a whole career ahead of him.

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