Daily news roundups

Casey crushes canned drinks, rough week for the East, U20s play France

A late “Happy Birthday!” to the Farfan twins. The nicest, chippiest, best-haired duo in MLS.

Union

Oh how sweet it is!

The Union dominated a depleted New York Red Bulls side for 90+ minutes to leap into a tie with the Energy Drinks for second place in the East. Full match reports from PSP, full match highlights and post-game quotes from Hackworth and the players.

The Union’s five game losing streak against New York was the second longest in MLS, and after the game John Hackworth and his players said they saw this game as a chance to earn respect and send a message to the rest of the league. That message: We can beat anyone in the East, not just the teams below us (provided they’re missing 3 key starters).

“I feel like I’ve been up here a lot this year trying to talk about how we think we’re a good team. And on a day like today, I think hopefully we’ve won a little bit of respect,” Hackworth said.

Sheanon Williams echoed his coach’s line of thinking: “I know we’ve talked in our locker room about getting respect. And I think this is how you do it. You beat the teams that are in front of you and you beat the teams that are supposed to be better than you.”

Hackworth has denied that his team needed to start beating teams above it in the table all season, but his quote in the post-game press conference showed that it was an issue closer to his heart than he let on: “I think it was everything for us because we said we needed this kind of win, we needed to beat somebody above us in the table, we needed to really make sure we played a complete game in all ways. Look I am not saying that was a complete game, but the proponents and what we did for that 90-plus minutes was really important for this club. For a young team to have the kind of experience and do it against a quality side, it is a big step for us.”

Over at Union Tally, Matthew De George thinks the Red Bulls are a playoff team with Jamison Olave but are pretty crap without him. Probably true, though any team willing to put Peguy Luyindula on the field for a professional soccer match deserves to miss the playoffs, sit in the corner, and think about what they’ve done. Bad Petke! No!

Union Dues singles out Michael Farfan, Sebastien Le Toux, and Brian Carroll as big contributors behind Conor Casey’s man of the match effort.

In a match filled with positives, the only disappointment (and it is a relatively minor one, given the scoreline) may come on the possession front, where the Union barely ended up in the black. Considering that New York white flagged it after Casey’s second, the Union need to do a better job of recognizing their position and holding onto the rock.

“The red card obviously killed us. Ironically, I thought we played some of our best soccer, moving wise, getting out of the back and into the final third, when we had 10 men at some points in the second half, which is hilarious to me,” Red Bulls head coach Mike Petke said after the match, neglecting to mention that he could have taken the opportunity to withdraw former soccer player Peguy Luyindula.

Petke did give some ground on the Thierry Henry penalty shout. “From my angle, it was aggravating because he beat three people and it looked like there was contact. But that’s the game, you know?”

Philly now has the 3rd best offense in the league and the best in the East. They have scored and allowed the same number of goals as Vancouver, who sit 5th in the West with one fewer game played.

MLS

Overall, it was a fantastic weekend for the Philadelphia Union. Toronto lost badly, and Columbus fell to the resurgent Chicago Magees.

Chivas USA lost to LA Galaxy. What. A. Surprise.

USA

The U-20s are back in action today at 11am (ESPN2, WatchESPN online) against France in Group A of the World Cup. Luis Gil looks the real deal for the Americans, but he will need a lot more support against another European power.

4 Comments

  1. Enjoyed the Luyindula lines despite not really knowing the back story of the player. What’s behind it?

  2. Chicago should change their name to the Chicago Magees.

  3. On the penalty I think the ref judged henry to have touched the ball too hard and had no chance of getting to it prior to it going out as well as trying to generate contact for the sake of contact. i thought it was a good call but again i am a union fan.

    • Andy Muenz says:

      A good call would have been a yellow to Henry for how far he went in the air. And that yellow should be there even if he had called a penalty. (Sort of like in the NHL when they send one player off for a foul but also send the one who was fouled off for diving.)

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