Daily news roundups

Jack to Impact? Union in Chicago previews, more USA-Mexico reaction, more news

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Philadelphia Union

How’s this to start your day:

We’ll keep you posted. In the meanwhile, the Union face Chicago on Saturday (5 pm: CSN, MLS Live, MLS Direct Kick, DirecTV).

Previews from PSP, Philadelphia UnionPhiladelphia Union (video), MLSsoccer.com, MLSsoccer.com (video), Brotherly GameThe Soccer Desk, David Murphy’s Union Blog, Chicago Fire, On the Fire,

Fellow SB Nation blogs Brotherly Game and Hot Time in Old Town trade opposite views.

Whether or not Austin Berry will play on Saturday against his former club is not yet known; John Hackworth indicated at Wednesday’s press conference that the biggest obstacle for the former Fire defender’s return to the starting lineup will be the strong play of Aaron Wheeler. If he does play, Berry admits “it’s going to be weird,” adding, “But I’ve settled in to the team in Philly now. They all feel like my family. It will be a little bit weird at the beginning seeing a bunch of familiar faces and being in that stadium in front of the fans, but I’m sure I’ll settle down quickly and I’ll get back into the game.”

Berry says, “Because Aaron has played so well, it hasn’t forced me to have to rush back” from the hamstring injury that had kept him out of the Columbus and Montreal games.

John Hackworth also said in this week’s press conference that, as much as Sheanon Williams is “somebody that we think we need to go forward,” the strong play of Ray Gaddis while Williams has been out with a preseason injury means that “has his work cut out to get back into the starting lineup.” Williams said, “Ray, right now, is the starter,” Williams told MLSsoccer.com. “Right now, I’m the backup. He’s been playing well. Obviously I give him all the credit in the world. I always try to encourage him and he’s been doing great.

Winning a starting spot back aside, Williams understands why the team has been cautious with his return. “When I return, I want it to be for the long haul and not 10 games and then miss five games here. I want to make sure I’m right.”

Keep an eye on Chicago forward Harrison Shipp. He leads the Rookie Rankings at MLSsoccer.com.

We mentioned earlier this week that Union assistant coach Jim Curtin, who spent most of his playing career with Chicago, will be honored at Saturday’s game. The Fire website has a highlight reel of his career at the club.

At the Union website, Kerith Gabriel has a interesting look using examples of the off the ball movement of Brian Carroll and Ray Gaddis to illustrate some of the little things each has done to contribute to the creation of the team’s scoring chances.

At Union Tally, Matthew De George says Maurice Edu “didn’t do anything to adversely affect his chances of getting on the plane to Brazil” in his 19 minutes against Mexico in Wednesday’s USMNT friendly.

Also at the Union website, Andy Jasner on why Maurice Edu’s callup was good both for Mo and for the Union.

No Union players make ProSoccerTalk’s Team of the Month but Vincent Nogueira and Fabinho receive mentions.

Local

Harrisburg have signed right back Neil Shaffer. Penn Live reports Shaffer, who formerly played for Pittsburgh, could start against Wilmington Hammerheads in Saturday’s season opener (7:30 pm: YouTube, NSCAA TV) because regular right back Colin Zizzi “has been dealing with a knee issue and will not play.”

MLS

The League’s independent review panel has rescinded the red cards issued to Portland defender Michael Harrington and Dallas midfielder Je-Vaughn Watson.

The Toronto city council has approved $10 million in funds for the expansion of BMO Field. CBC Sports reports, “Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment is seeking $10 million from each of the three levels of government — municipal, provincial and federal — with an eye to spending $90 million itself to expand the stadium, which is owned by the city but operated by MLSE.”

US

Mexico head coach Miguel Herrera said after Wednesday’s friendly, “Bradley looked as if he was the best player in the world.”

At SI, Brian Staus observes that, while fans got plenty of excitement from Wednesday;s friendly, what they didn’t get “was additional clarity about where the U.S. stands as next month’s World Cup camp approaches.” Straus says, “The only safe conclusion is that the two weeks of training in California and three subsequent exhibitions in May and June will be critical.”

ProSoccerTalk and Goal.com on who’s stock rose or fell after Wednesday’s friendly. PST thinks DeAndre Yedlin’s stock fell, Goal.com thinks it rose.

Also at ProSoccerTalk, Mike Prindiville on the questions surrounding the US backline.

At ASN, Noah Davis says its officially time to start worrying about Omar Gonzalez. More on the “Omar conundrum” from ProSoccerTalk’s Richard Farley.

At MLSsoccer.com, Greg Lalas on how Michael Parkhurst’s performance in Wednesday’s friendly earned him a ticket to Brazil.

At Goal.com, Ives Galarcep on how Bradley and Gonzalez were on opposite ends of the performance spectrum.

Why didn’t Landon Donovan start against Mexico? Jurgen Klinsmann says that, while he was having trouble with his left knee, more importantly, Donovan did not impress during the pregame camp. “It was a simple decision based on where he was the last couple days. He told me also this morning that he had some issues with his left knee. But he didn’t train well. He had no tempo in his training sessions. He had no higher pace, higher rhythm. He didn’t take people on.”

Donovan says he would have been able to perform had he been given a start, but he also understands why Klinsmann used him as a sub. “I’m fine with whatever. I like being a part of the team. On a certain day, if Jurgen wants me to start and play many minutes, that’s great. If, on other days, he sees other options and he wants to take advantage of that, I’m happy to come off the bench. I’m in a different phase of my career. I can handle that.”

At the LA Times, Kevin Baxter has more on the new phase of Donovan’s career.

More on the potential Julian Green showed in his national team debut.

Missed it yesterday (I’m still getting used to the new design of the US Soccer website) but here’s the postgame quote sheet from the friendly.

ESPN has announced four more commentators for its Worldf Cup coverage, Efan Ekoku, Kasey Keller, Alejandro Moreno and Stewart Robson. Well done, Ale!

Bloomberg View has a semi-serious take on what the fact that, next to Brazil, US fans account for the most requests for World Cup tickets by a wide margin.

SBI has a closer look at some of the new faces on the USWNT ahead of next week’s friendlies against China.

Elsewhere

The AP reports, “FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke has again raised concerns over Brazil’s World Cup preparations, saying ‘we are not ready’ and that the stadium for the opening game is one of two venues that worry him most.”

At The Guardian, Owen Gibson on “Why PSG and the World Cup will not be enough for football-hungry Qatar.”

In related news, ESPN reports, “Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu has denied that naming rights for a redeveloped Camp Nou have already been sold to the club’s commercial partners in Qatar.

13 Comments

  1. FUCKING TERRIBLE TRADE

    I HATE YOU JOHN HACKWORTH

  2. The Black Hand says:

    Soooo…ummm…yeah…I got nothin’.

  3. Please tell me this is a poorly timed April Fool’s joke.

  4. And it’s official now. Big time mistake and 100% about money bc he wouldn’t be back next year. How long until Amobi goes

    • Yea the writing is on the wall in regards to Amobi’s future here. We don’t or can’t spend money and he plays out of position.

  5. I don’t understand. Someone help me. Surely if this goes through, this is a choice that they are making to keep other players down the line- Amobi? Edu? Nog?
    SOMEONE HELP ME UNDERSTAND

  6. McMohansky says:

    Not upset about losing Jack. He’s rather limited as a lone striker, and that seems to be the way Hack (and most coaches) wants to play. Whether Wenger can fulfill that role… We shall see. Hope Casey is good to go Saturday.

  7. Wilkerson McLaser says:

    All that offseason goodwill is *poof* gone. I don’t know/care if Jack got into an altercation with the overhyped SoBs. Jack has done tremendously for this team despite being treated consistently badly by the FO. Days like this I feel as though we’re doomed to be the Mets of MLS.

  8. notsadaboutjack says:

    This is a great trade, Jack is lazy, doesn’t help the team, never sets up others, complains all the time. He hasn’t scored regularly in over a year not to mention all his goals were scrappy taps ins. That is not the Phila Union of 2013, we need players who can play with the team not just tap in rebounds.

  9. “No Union players make ProSoccerTalk’s Team of the Month but Vincent Nogueira and FABINHO receive mentions”

    um what?

  10. also, there is no way williams should be sitting behind gaddis on the depth chart. period.

  11. SilverRey says:

    WoW! Stunned.

    So…. LeToux up top and Cruz on the side for the games when CC has arthritis?

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