Daily news roundups

Reaction to loss in Montreal, HCI with big road win, league results, more

Photo: Courtesy of Philadelphia Union

Philadelphia Union

190 minutes since the last goal.

305 minutes since the last open play goal.

Winless in seven games with a 1-3-5 record after nine games.

Eighth place in the Eastern Conference, 14th in the league.

To put the Philadelphia Union’s 1-0 loss at Montreal on Saturday in a broader context, consider this tweet from Brian Sciaretta:

This is not good.

Andrew Wenger said after Saturday’s loss, “We do well defensively and we do well moving the ball, but we can’t put the ball in the back of the net, and at the end of the day that comes down to me. And a few other guys, but really, that’s the difference right now… we have to do better and I have to do better.”

Amobi Okugo said, “We’ve played teams that are in slumps, and I don’t know if we come in and take them lightly, but every team in MLS is able to beat any other team in MLS. We can’t make it a habit, these ties and these losses — we’ve got to get out of the hole.”

He added, “I remember that last year, we would win and then fans would complain that it was ugly. It can be pretty soccer, but you’ve got to battle it out too. It’s not La Liga, it’s not the Bundesliga, it’s not the EPL – it’s MLS, and it’s going to be a battle every game.”

John Hackworth said, “I still believe that if we play that way every single game we’re going to come out on the better end of it. You can’t discount the fact that we’re playing opponents that are good, that it’s a very tight league, there’s a lot of parity. So, we have to find a way to put the ball in the back of the net, ultimately, but I’m not any more disappointed about the lack of the way we play. We’ve tried to instill a system that is based on a lot of ball movement, a lot of forward, positive possession, and that’s working. We need to take our chances better and, once that happens and in a game where you have a lot of chances for the second game in a row, you think those are going to fall your way eventually.”

Okugo echoed his coach’s words, “I hate to keep saying it, but it’s a process, you know? We are still trying to get the chemistry right and once those wins start to come and start building the confidence and the team chemistry we are going to roll. It’s about sticking to the basics now and the coaches’ game-plan and philosophy it’s going to start working…We have to start a good run of form, we have to stop the bleeding. I feel like if we can turn it around and get a good result against Seattle it will give our team a ton of confidence.”

Match recaps from PSP, Philadelphia Union, Philly.com, Daily News, Delco Times, Philly Soccer News, Brotherly Game, Montreal Impact, Montreal Gazette, CTV Montreal, Mount Royal Soccer, MLSsoccer.com, ProSoccerTalk, SBI, Goal.com, Soccer Wire, WhoScored.com, The Sports Network, and the AP.

Postgame quote sheet from PSP.

At Brotherly Game, Barry Evans has game changers from Saturday’s loss.

Stoppage Time Soccer says the Union’s problem is that midfielders aren’t getting into scoring positions and also wonders if the lack of scoring is related to the McInerney trade.

Sheanon Williams talks to Soccer America about the preseason injury that has hampered his start to the season. “That’s why the injury was such a problem for me, because now I’m starting off the season behind the eight ball. Instead of having eight games under my belt I’ve played in two and a half. It’s definitely hindered my ability. First, I want to get back to where I was last year and from there I can start to implement things I wanted to in the offseason. The injury’s definitely a setback but a minor one I’ll get through and hopefully be back at full tilt soon.”

At the Inquirer, Laura McCrystal looks at how expectations that PPL park would spark redevelopment in Chester have fallen short. Nick Sakiewicz says, “We always had a grand plan to build a lot of stuff down here, but…the economy made it very difficult for us to get any kind of bank financing or people interested in developing.”

The report notes the Union are preparing to build “on land earmarked for the envisioned development.” Sakiewicz says, “If people want to move to Chester or build in Chester we could relocate the [practice] fields.” What? After you build it?!?

Philadelphia Union Academy

The Union Academy returned to action on Sunday against their counterparts from the Baltimore Bays after a couple of weeks off. The U-13/14s won 4-1 with goals from Juan Infante, Tony Temple (PK), and a brace from Nylolas Sessock. The U-15/16s fared less well, losing 2-1. Conor Bradley scored the lone goal for the Union. The U-17/18s came out on top of a 2-1 scoreline with goals from Matthew Greer (PK) and Mohammed Conde.

The Union academy teams are on the road again on Sunday, May 4 when they face DC United.

Local

Harrisburg City Islanders halted their season-opening three-game winless streak with a big 2-1 win over Sacramento Republic on Saturday night, with former Union draft pick Robbie Derschang opening the scoring in the 5th minute, and former Union man Morgan Langley scoring the 52nd  minute game winner.

The game was Sacramento’s home opener, and some 20,231 spectators were on hand for a sellout crowd. That attendance number set a new regular season league record and was larger than any MLS game this weekend save one. Match recaps from Sacramento Republic, Penn LiveSacramento Bee, and Examiner.

MLS

In the Eastern Conference, Columbus (12 points) remain in first place after drawing 1-1 with New York (11 points), who are in fifth place. Kansas City (11 points) are in second place after their 2-0 road loss to New England (11 points) who are in fourth place. DC United (11 points) moves up to third place after fighting back from being down 1-0 early for a big 4-1 win at home over Dallas. Sixth place Toronto (9 points) had the weekend off. Houston (eight points) moves up to seventh place after a 1-1 draw with visiting Portland. The Union (8 points) fall to eighth place after their 1-0 loss to Montreal (6 points), who are in ninth place with their first win of the season. Last place Chicago (6 points) had the weekend off.

In the Western Conference, Seattle (16 points) are in first place after their 4-1 win over fourth place Colorado (11 points). Clint Dempsey had a brace to bring his league-leading goal total for the season up to eight. Dallas (16 points) slips to second place with their 4-1 loss at DC. Fifth place Vancouver (10 points) equalized with the last kick of the game to draw 2-2 with third place Salt Lake (14 points). Sixth place LA (8 points) had the weekend off. San Jose (6 points) moves up to seventh place with their 1-0 win over eighth place Chivas USA (6 points). Portland (5 points) remain winless and if last place after their 1-1 road draw with Houston.

Real Salt Lake’s draw with Vancouver marks the third time this season the team has given up a goal in the 90th minute or later.

Fox Sports has an interesting read on how the Professional Referee Organization monitors referees on gameday.

Willingboro, NJ native Peter Vermes said of the passing of Barcelona coach Tito Vilanova, his former teammate at Figueres along with US national team assistant coach and youth soccer director Tab Ramos, “I’m just very sad today. Vilanova was a great guy. He was always class act as a person, and an honest player as well on the field. I had a lot of respect for him, even outside of soccer. It’s a really young guy passing away. It’s just terrible.”

The AP reports, “Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber said Friday a new downtown Miami stadium is essential to complete plans for an expansion team that would be owned by former English star David Beckham.”

Looks like Tim Howard will not be returning to MLS when he finishes his new two-year contract with Everton. Howard, who will be 39 when his contract expires, told ESPN, “I’ll be on a beach somewhere when I’m 40. I would pretty much take that to the bank that I won’t be playing past 40. There are other things I want to achieve in life, other things that I want to do.”

Fulham will play DC United in Jacksonville on July 26. The English club was purchased by Jaguars owner Shad Khan last July.

NWSL

Seattle Reign (9 points) are in first place after a 2-0 win over fifth place Houston Dash (3 points). Portland Thorns (7 points) are in second place with a 3-1 win over last place FC Kansas City (1 point). Third place Washington Spirit (6 points) defeated fourth place Chicago Red Stars (3 points), 1-0. Sixth place Western New York Flash (3 points) had the weekend off. Seventh place Boston Breakers (3 points) picked up their first win of the season with a 3-2 victory over eighth place Sky Blue FC (2 points).

Penn State has the second-most players in the NWSL among US colleges.

US

CONCACAF president Jeffrey Webb wants the Gold Cup to be hosted by a country other than the US for a change. “I think the Gold Cup should not always be in one country. It’s the best tournament in the area and all members should be able to receive the best prize that is this tournament. The decision to have it in the United States has been solely for financial reasons.” The Gold Cup has been staged in the US every years since the start of the tournament in 191, except for 1993 and 2003 when Mexico was co-host.

Elsewhere

Self-confessed Singaporean match-fixer Wilson Raj Perumal claims in a new book that he helped Honduras and Nigeria qualify for the 2010 World Cup. He writes, “Ferrying Nigeria and Honduras to the World Cup was a personal achievement. ‘Fuck,’ I considered. ‘I got two teams to qualify for the World Cup but I cannot tell anyone.'”

Barcelona was down 2-1 to Villareal when some racist threw a banana on the pitch as Dani Alves was about to take a corner kick. He promptly picked up the banana and ate it. Barcelona went on to win the game 3-2. Alves said after the game, “We have suffered this in Spain for some time. You have to take it with a dose of humor. We aren’t going to change things easily. If you don’t give it importance, they don’t achieve their objective.”

10 Comments

  1. reading things like that inquirer article make me far more unhappy with the union than the shitty results on the pitch.

    • The Union are like some ironic curse.
      “So Satan, If I sign my soul over to you to you I will get my own soccer team. That’s great what could possibly go wrong?”
      .
      Announcer: “The New Philadelphia fracnchise will be headed by Nick Sakiewicz”
      .
      Me: “NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!”
      .
      Satan:”HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA”

      • This is even funnier if you imagine Satan’s voice being the same as the Robot Devil’s from Futurama!

    • Amen, nickt. I scratch my head at the people who threaten to give up their season tickets because they don’t like the way the midfield is deployed. To me, if the soccer is bad, I’ll just drink more at the tailgate. But, if the Union can’t or won’t treat the City of Chester ethically, that’s going to do it for me.

  2. I’m at a loss as to what will get this team scoring. I suppose they could go with Le Toux up front with Fernandez and Wenger on the wings? Noguiera, Maidana, Edu mid field and Gaddis, Berry, Okugo, Williams back 4? I have a feeling nothing is going to work until we get real Manager. SMFH!!!

  3. Andy Muenz says:

    One stat that was missed at the top. 5 straight games without scoring the first goal.

  4. The most disturbing thing are the quotes from Hackworth where he thinks things are fine and coming around nicely.

  5. I feel kind of bad for Wenger. He seems to be putting the problems on himself, and really, I think he’s played pretty well since he’s got here. The fact that a half new team is having the exact problems the overall team has been having for two years is not his fault.

    As for the rest of the team and the coach, well, I’m losing my usual sunny, positive outlook.

  6. Jean Jeannot says:

    Wenger is definitely not the problem. Wenger is definitely the future of this club. We are in need of a striker who has no reservations about shooting. A striker with a killer instinct. Wenger works his butt off and holds up play for on running players who never show up or show up too late. I love Conor Casey but he is still getting his form (this explains the horrible misses/hesitancy in shooting). I wish I could say I am giving up on The U but its not how you start but how you finish!!!

  7. Dani Alves. What an awesome move. Especially in light of the recent comments of Donald Sterling, it’s awesome to see athletes smash that ignorant behavior and take it in stride. Well done sir.

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