Daily news roundups

Getting ready for some bull, Zac on lessons learned, Sons of Ben and Bearfight Brigade news, more

Photo: Michael Long

Philadelphia Union

What does John Hackworth expect when the Union faces the Red Bulls on Saturday (8 pm, NBCSN)? “Our expectations are that we’re going to get everything from them,” says the Union coach. “We’re going to have to do a good job managing the early part of that game emotionally to not let it get away from us. Then, we hope that we can put our game plan into effect and play the rhythm and tempo we like to play.”

New York would be a great place for Jack McInerney to return to his goalscoring ways. As US Soccer Players notes, McInerney has scored 7 of the Union’s 15 road goals. That’s a league-leading 47 percent, and McInerney also leads the league in average shots per game on the road.

No word yet on the availability of Ray Gaddis. Hackworth said on Wednesday, “We hope he’s available. But I don’t want to say yet just because he hasn’t been cleared (by the medical staff).”

Big Apple Soccer reports that recent Red Bull signings Bradley Wright-Phillips and David Carney will not be available to face the Union on Saturday.

Look for our preview later this morning. In the meanwhile, check out our quick reference and these previews from Philadelphia Union.com, Union Dues, New York Red Bulls.com, Empire of Soccer, Once a Metro (1), Once a Metro (2), ProSoccerTalk, and Goal.com.

At the Delco Times, Matthew De George talks to Zac MacMath about the strides he’s made since allowing that late equalizer against Dallas back in June. MacMath explained, “It’s another moment. It wasn’t my first mistake this season, and it won’t be my last mistake this season. Those things happen…It’s an easy decision. I should’ve just punched it…So I learned my lesson. I don’t have to review that anymore. I know what kind of situations I need to do. Late in the game, you just need to be safe and get the ball out of there.”

MacMath said of his doubters, “Honestly it seems like no matter what I do this season, there’s always going to be people who are doubting me and doubting what I do and the whole season and what have you. I try not to focus on it. I try to do what’s best for me and what’s best for the team, and the outside people don’t really matter in my mind because they’re not the ones that are getting paid to play every weekend. I just try to focus on doing what’s best for the team and for myself, and that’s what matters.”

Amobi Okugo looks ahead to the remaining games of the season. “We can’t ever get complacent. We have to keep fighting every day. We have a main goal of reaching the playoffs. There is so much work to be done. We can still improve and get better. We have things to work on. I feel very good, but I also know I can get better. I think as a club, we’re excited because we’re in a good place and we feel like our best soccer is still in front of us…The schedule is difficult, which is why we take each challenge as it comes…I think we have a lot of room to improve and I’m excited to see how we accomplish that the final 10 games. It’s going to be a fun ride.”

At Union Tally, De George has a good breakdown of the Union’s post-season chances by looking at their current points per game average, their form over the last ten games, and their reasonable prospects over the final ten games of the season.

Sebastien “Le Assist Machine” Le Toux says, “If I lead the league in assists, it’s great for me. But it just means that if I get assists, we score goals. And if we score goals, we probably win games. I mean, at the end of the year, if I’m going to be the leader in assists, I will say, ‘OK, I’ll take it.’ But it’s not what I’m thinking about.”

At the Philadelphia Inquirer, Marc Narducci on Conor Casey.

Kerith Gabriel’s series of Q&As with Union Academy coaches concludes with U-14 coach Chris Brewer, who says of his young charges, “We can only help create an environment that allows them to grow at their pace, but it is up to them. So they have to know they have the ability and commitment and hopefully we have chose wisely by picking those boys. Also, I think they have to know that there are millions of boys just like them all across the world who share their same goals and ambitions and that there is no shortcut to that end. So their ability to work hard, be dedicated, be disciplined and stay humble is important. Those are the lessons we are trying to instill at this age.”

It’s season ticket renewal time and the Union is offering two rather nice incentives in thanks to their fans for their fifth anniversary season. This year, every account will receive one free season parking pass. Also, If you renew your full season plan by Oct. 1, your account name will be included on a special fifth anniversary commemorative scarf that all full season ticket holders will receive.

An email went out to Sons of Ben members on Thursday that includes big changes for the Union supporters group. Beginning in Nov. of 2014, Sons of Ben members will be able to vote on candidates for its board of directors.

Thanks to a new revenue share deal with the Union that will see the Sons of Ben receive a portion of River End season ticket sales, the supporters group has also announced that it has dropped its membership fee from $40 to $27. Sons of Ben members will also now be able to renew their membership when they purchase or renew their season ticket plan.

On Thursday evening at Stoney’s Pub in Wilmington, the Bearfight Brigade announced that it will begin charging yearly membership fees. The supporters group also announced it had achieved non profit status in Pennsylvania.

Additionally, the group announced that it will back a new Delaware-based team in the United States Adult Soccer Association. Former Union captain Danny Califf will be director of soccer operations and former Union goalkeeper Thorn Holder will be goalkeeping coach.

More on the Bearfight Brigade announcements from Union Dues.


The City Islanders play their final game of the regular season on the road against Dayton Dutch Lions on Saturday (7:30 pm USL Live). At stake is a third place finish and home field advantage to start the playoffs.

At Penn Live, Michael Bullock reports that Cristhian Hernandez will not be making the trip to Ohio due to a knee injury. City Islanders coach Bill Becher said earlier in the week the Greg Jordan, who went the full 90 in his return from a knee injury in last Saturday’s 3-1 win over Tampa Bay, also will not be traveling because Dayton has a turf field.


The LA Galaxy announced on Thursday that Omar Gonzalez has been re-signed to a new multi-year deal to become the first American defender to sign a Designated Player contract. More on the announcement from The LA Times, MLSsoccer.com and Soccer America. SBI reports that the deal comes in at $1.5 million per year over three years.

The Gonzalez deal comes with Jurgen Klinsmann’s blessing.

At MLSsoccer.com, Jonah Freedman writes that it’s taken seven years but the Designated Player rule “has truly delivered in a stunning way.”

ASN has a tactical look at Clint Dempsey’s game and argues that he never really fit in at Tottenham.

DC United have signed 23-year-old Swiss left fullback Dennis Iapichino, who was recently released by Montreal Impact.

Deadline Detroit on why an MLS team in the city makes sense.


The league finishes the regular season this weekend. Check the latest installment of Footy on the Telly for where to watch the games on TV and online.


The first sentence of Jozy Altidore’s new blog at ESPN reads, “SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina—Well, that was fun.”

Did you know that the USMNT is four wins from breaking the 15-win streak record set by Spain, one that the US ended at the 2009 Confederations Cup?

US Soccer.com previews the upcoming ESPN Films documentary on the 1999 Women’s World Cup winning team.


The Premier League—and the Champions League—are back! Check out the latest installment of Footy on the Telly for where to watch the games.

Time on NBC’s Premier League gamble.

Reuters on the influx of American owners of Premier League teams. US-owners now control six of the league’s 20 teams.

At MLSsoccer.com, Greg Seltzer previews the Americans playing in the Prem.


  1. It’s L’Assist Machine, but love the line.

  2. I find it somewhat odd that the Union are giving the Sons of Ben a piece of the river end so they could charge less for memberships.
    The question is what is the front office getting in exchange for giving the SOBs money?

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