Daily news roundups

YSC Academy opens, Kleberson the key, USMNT bus pelted with eggs in CR, more news

Photo: Courtesy of the Philadelphia Union

Philadelphia Union

On Tuesday, the Union officially opened the new YSC Academy which combines academics and soccer training.

Nick Sakiewicz said, “It’s huge. It’s one of those days in Union history where we will look back 10 or 15 years from now and see a bunch of players at PPL Park and say we were there when we affiliated with YSC Academy and the school.”

John Hackworth said, “I think it’s a landmark day personally. When we were in Bradenton with the Under-17 national team, we had the residency component and we utilized schools in that area – and we had great schools, don’t get me wrong. But it wasn’t that you could literally go from the soccer field to the classroom and back and forth in the way that the student athletes will be able to do here. And there was never that connectedness to the very first team to an eighth grader.”

YSC Sports founder and Union investor Rich Graham said, “This is an idea I’ve had for many years. I’ve always thought that in American soccer we need to get organized, we need to get systematic about how we’re developing our talent so that we can compete at a global level. And the reason why I invested in MLS is I believe in the American dream. I want to see American players. I want to see us produce 10 Landon Donovans. I want to see us win a World Cup. This all is about what steps can we take to help prepare the United States to compete at a global level.

Sakiewicz said, “My dream is to start 11 players at PPL Park and the majority are from this academy. It’s hard to tell when we will get there, this is a long-term project. This is a very expensive, very long term project that will take a decade. After 10 years, we’ll look back and say, that’s the metric.”

Hackworth said, “We know that it will be a small percentage of student-athletes here that actually make it. But the point is that now they have a true path and an opportunity that is, to me, the most authentic and unique of any professional team in the United States or Canada.

At CSN Philly, Ryan Bright writes, “Though the Union see YSC Academy as the future of their organization, the club is only an affiliate of the program and is not a financial partner according to Union representatives. The project is funded and headed Graham, an investor in the Union and advocate of the athletic academy model.”

At the Delco Times, Matthew De Gorge talks to the head of the school, Dr. Nooha Ahmed-Lee, and has a closer look at the new school’s classroom philosophy and facilities.

At ProSoccerTalk, Steve Davis wonders if the Union’s playoff hopes depend on Kleberson. “The Union, probably the most cash-strapped team in MLS, can afford big salary blunders even less that most clubs. Safe to say, nobody around PPL Park wanted to pay $500,000 in salary for seven appearances (in early September), no goals and no assists from a veteran attacker…Injuries, fitness … whatever … None of that matters with seven rounds remaining. It’s a bottom-line business at some point and it’s time for Kleberson to deliver value.”

Fabinho has been named to MLS soccer.com’s Team of the Week. “Sheanon Williams (Seattle Sounders)” was named to the bench.

Sebastien Le Toux came in at No. 13, and Sheanon Williams at No. 16, in the latest Castrol Index Weekly Top 20. In the Full Castrol Index, the top five Union players are Jack McInerney (No. 8), Conor Casey (No. 19), Zac MacMath (No. 36), Sebastien Le Toux (No. 39), and Amobi Okugo (No. 49).

More power rankings! MLSsoccer.com moves the Union up three spots to No. 10. ESPN keeps them at No. 12.

The Union is one of the partners in the three-year, $2.7 million “Healthy Futures” program, the Independence Blue Cross initiative aimed at promoting healthy lifestyle choices that will take place in 20 area schools.

Brotherly Game contributors debate who should start at left back, Fabinho or Ray Gaddis. Turns out to be not much of a debate.


Harrisburg City Islanders forward Sainey Touray has been named to the USL Pro All-League First Team. Goalkeeper Nick Noble and forward Lucky Mkosana received second team honors. More on the news from Penn Live.com.

The La Salle men’s team home season kicks off today at 7 pm against Loyola (Md.).

Four area players have been named to the fall class of the U-17 residency program in Brandenton: goalkeeper Kevin Silva (PDA; Bethlehem, Pa.) defender Matthew Olosunde (New York Red Bulls Academy; Trenton, N.J.), midfielder Thomas McCabe (PDA; South Orange, N.J.), and forward Christian Pulisic (PA Classics; Hershey, Pa.).


Union fans will want to keep an eye on tonight’s game between Columbus and Houston (7:30 pm, MLS Live). The Crew, in eighth place with 29 points, have a new interim coach. Houston is in sixth place with 37 points, only two points behind the fourth place Union.

Also playing tonight are Seattle and Chivas USA (10 pm MLS Live).

Robbie Keane, who scored two goals and an assist in LA’s 3-0 win over San Jose, has been named MLSsoccer.com’s Player of the Week for the second time in three weeks.

Tim Cahill is out 3-4 weeks with a ligament tear in his right ankle.

ProSoccerTalk says the league schedule could be reduced from 34 to 28 games.

Samir Nasri joins the list of Manchester City players who say they would like to someday play in MLS. “I would like to discover the MLS. I love American culture.”

There seems to be a discrepancy between the attendance figures reported by Orlando City Lions and the turnstile records kept by the city of Orlando.

The Oklahoma Gazette on rival NASL and USL PRO franchises in Oklahoma City.


Think Progress.org has a long and wide-ranging piece on the league’s hopes to succeed where its predecessors have failed.

The Boston Breakers have named Tom Durkin as their new head coach.


After landing at Juan Santamaría International Airport in Costa Rica, the USMNT was greeted by jeering chants of “USA – No fari play” and the team bus was pelted with eggs. Stay classy, Costa Rica.

Sidelined over the week with Sunderland with a hamstring strain, Jozy Altidore has been cleared to resume training with the USMNT ahead of Friday’s World Cup qualifier in Costa Rica. The release from US Soccer says, “An MRI evaluation of his right hamstring was normal.”

In a Q&A at US Soccer.com, Landon Donovan says,

This team is in such good form right now. The confidence is so high. The camaraderie is really good in the group. We don’t need to worry about external stuff and just focus on playing because we’re talented enough and we have a good enough team that we can get results in these next couple games and we can be celebrating in a really big way Tuesday night…

I don’t think I’ve ever felt as confident about getting a result on one of these trips…We need to go in with the mindset that we absolutely can win this game, and that has to be the mentality. If we carry that energy and that belief onto the field Friday night, everyone is going to sense it on both teams and we have a real chance to do something special…

There would be no better feeling than standing on the field in Columbus on Tuesday night and all of us celebrating. I can envision scarves around our neck, American flags, the crowd going crazy and everybody celebrating together. That would be an incredible moment, but there is a lot that has to happen before that. The beauty of it is that it’s all in our hands.

Soccer Insider lays out the scenarios for the US clinching a World Cup spot in Costa Rica or Columbus.

Soccer America sets the background for the game in Costa Rica.

In Scotland, The Herald says that the Scottish national team is close to announcing a friendly against the US to be played at Hampden Park in November.

The USWNT trounced Mexico 7-0 in Tuesday’s friendly at RFK. Sydney Leroux scored a hat trick in 9 minutes before adding a fourth goal little more than ten minutes later. Abby Wambach opened the scoring to record her 161st international goal and also had three assists. Rachel Beuhler also scored as did newcomer Morgan Brian. Former Philadelphia Independence defender Leigh Ann Robinson earned her first cap.

USWNT coach Tom Sermanni said of Leroux, “She’s a bit like Didier Drogba.”

Here’s a Q&A with US Soccer director of scouting Tony Lepore.


SBI recaps the summer transfer window in Europe. More than $2.3 billion was spent by Europe’s top five leagues. Nearly $980 million of that was spent by the Premier League.

Very cool:


  1. very cooool video! thanks for posting!

  2. Wow that Kleberson article is really damning to me. I know there was a piece written on this earlier in the year but how the hell are we one of the most cash strapped teams in the league? It can’t possibly be due to ticket sales or merchandise bc we seem to be right even with the majority. Are our owners really that small pocketed? Have we been cursed with the indie movie of sports teams?

    • WilkersonMcLaser says:

      Cash strapped may be another way of saying “unwillingness to spend.”

    • Basically, yes, especially compared to most of the other teams in MLS. Remember when the Union were going to develop the area around PPL Park and, perhaps more importantly, create their own training ground?

      We may not be a small market team, but we have small market ownership.

    • Well maybe this article on how Union Owner Jay Sugarman was awarded a 26 million dollar compensation deal (mostly stock so probably worthless) to run a company that lost 62 million dollars last year will give you an idea on why at best money isn’t being put into the Union at worst money is getting bled out for equity.


      I swear the entire team is a monument to failing upwards.

    • It became very clear during the first FO/SOB meeting that the owners are very small pocketed. I think they are ‘in it’ with the hope that at one point a lucrative TV deal will come to fruition. In the mean time they will be happy just to be on the brink of making the play-offs…
      This will turn into a disaster since more and more other clubs are spending the $’s (Donovan with his new contract, Dempsey to Seattle on high wages, etc). Actually heard that one team wanted Kaka real badly and that Kaka would have come had the US window closed on September 2, as everywhere else. Am sure it was not the Union they referred to… Ultimately we will become less of a play-off contender.
      Richie Graham could pump a bit more money into the Union but instead he puts his money into the ‘soccer’ school…

  3. Glad to see Davis pointing out that the Union’s pockets appear to be empty. It’s a problem this year but it’s going to be an even bigger problem going forward.

  4. Pelted with eggs? Wouldn’t snowballs have been more appropriate?

  5. The Fabinho/Gaddis debate is a good one. One in which I think everyone knows their pros/cons.
    Personally I would start by leaving Ray at LB and Move Cruz to LM. He can’t do worse than Cruz, and I think that gets more talent on the field for us.

  6. If they reduce the schedule by 3 home games, I wonder if we get a partial refund on our season tickets.

  7. Shout out to Sak for emphasizing how expensive the academy is, implying that the Union are funding it.

    Can anybody make sense of what he said about the metric? Is the metric starting academy players or something to be determined after 10 years?

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