Union match reports

Match report: Philadelphia Union 3-5 New England Revolution

Photo: Daniel Gajdamowicz

The Union lost their positive momentum from Wednesday night’s big win in Kansas City and fell 5-3 at home Saturday to the New England Revolution.

The hot seat got a little hotter for coach John Hackworth as he saw his side concede a record five goals at PPL Park. Despite a fantastic goal from Vincent Nogueira at the end of the first half, three New England goals to start the second half saw the Revolution leave Philadelphia with all three points.

First half

Hackworth made one change from the team that beat KC on Wednesday. Aaron Wheeler started at center back, pushing Sheanon Williams to left back for the suspended Fabinho.

The Union had a chance to open the scoring in just the 5th minute through Andrew Wenger. Sheanon Williams found himself in space and with time to cross from the left and his ball was perfect in picking out Wenger eight yards from goal. The striker did well to head the ball down toward the left corner of Brad Knighton’s goal, but the New England goalkeeper was up for the challenge and got down to push the ball around the post.

New England opened the scoring in the 12th minute after a series of Union errors. First, Zac MacMath would slice his left footed clearance out of bounds under pressure. Straight from the throw in, Aaron Wheeler was called for a soft foul right on the edge of the box on the right side. Chris Tierney then fired an in-swinging free kick and A.J. Soares arrived first to nod in from six yards.

New England doubled their advantage in the 26th minute through Diego Fagundez. Teal Bunbury made a smart run in behind the Union defense from far on the right side, where he was picked out by Lee Nguyen. With time to take a touch and find a pass, he found the streaking Fagundez, who took two touches to get beyond Austin Berry and slot home from 12 yards.

The Union found a lifeline in the 36th minute when Vincent Nogueira cut the New England lead in half. After a long throw in from Sheanon Williams was only partially cleared from the Revolution box, the ball bounced to Danny Cruz, who laid off a bouncing pass for Nogueira to strike first time. The Frenchman made no mistake, firing the half volley into the top corner of Brad Knighton’s goal. The midfielder didn’t take the time to celebrate, running back to his own half and urging his teammates on.

Second half

Whatever momentum the Union had from the late first half goal quickly disappeared early in the second half. The ever present Lee Nguyen beat both Ray Gaddis and Austin Berry inside the Union area before slotting past a helpless Zac MathMath from seven yards in the 49th minute.

John Hackworth responded to going down by two goals with a substitution and formation change, going to a three-back set with Antoine Hoppenot replacing Aaron Wheeler.

But things went from bad to worse in the 57th minute when Chris Tierney made it 4-1 with a free kick from 20 yards. Berry was judged to have brought down Bunbury just outside the box and Tierney would make no mistake with his left foot, firing into the left corner of MacMath’s goal.

The wheels then completely came off when rookie Patrick Mullins scored a 5th goal for New England in the 67th minute. After more good interplay from Nguyen and Fagundez, Mullins had time to shoot from 18 yards and placed a perfect shot into MacMath’s near post.

Williams pulled one back for the Union, firing in from six yards with his left foot in the 76th minute. Shortly after that, Ray Gaddis hit a rocket toward the top corner of Knighton’s goal, only for the New England goalkeeper to get a hand to it and push it over the bar.

In the 82nd minute, Chaco Maidana saw straight red when he slid in late on substitute Steve Neuman. The tackle was certainly late, but the straight red card seemed harsh for the midfielder.

The Union would make the scoreline a bit more respectable when Sebastien Le Toux scored a well taken penalty in stoppage time after Antoine Hoppenot was pulled down in the Revolution box. Le Toux is now 9 for 9 on PKs for the Union.

Homegrown midfielder Zach Pfeffer made a rare appearance, coming on in the 73rd minute for the ineffective Leo Fernandes. The youngster did well, appearing composed on the ball and picking out a few good passes.

It must be noted that the Sons of Ben were fairly good natured despite the scoreline. They sang for free beer and for the introduction of Pfeffer after New England had already scored 5.

The Union next have a two-game West Coast road trip that includes games against LA Galaxy on May 25 and Chivas USA on May 31 before they return to PPL Park to host Vancouver WHitecaps on June 7.

Philadelphia Union
Zac MacMath, Raymond Gaddis, Austin Berry, Aaron Wheeler (Antoine Hoppenot ’52), Sheanon Williams, Amobi Okugo (c), Vincent Nogueira, Leo Fernandes (Zach Pfeffer ’73), Danny Cruz (Sebastien Le Toux ’61), Cristian Maidana, Andrew Wenger
Unused Substitutes: Ethan White, Conor Casey, Andre Blake, Fred.

New England Revolution
Brad Knighton, A.J. Soares, Darrius Barnes, Chris Tierney, Andrew Farrell, Andy Dorman (Steve Neuman ’75), Daigo Kobayashi (Scott Caldwell ’59), Lee Nguyen, Diego Fagundez (Kelyn Rowe ’69), Teal Bunbury, Patrick Mullins
Unused Substitutes: O’Brian Woodbine, Larry Jackson, Stephen McCarthy, Charlie Davies.

Scoring Summary:
13′ — NE: A.J. Soares (Chris Tierney)
26′ — NE: Diego Fagundez (Teal Bunbury, Lee Nguyen)
36′ — PHI: Vincent Nogueira (Danny Cruz)
49′ — NE: Lee Nguyen (Daigo Kobayashi)
57′ — NE: Chris Tierney
67′ — NE: Patrick Mullins (Diego Fagundez)
76′ — PHI: Sheanon Williams (Austin Berry, Sebastien Le Toux)
90′ + 2 — PHI: Sebastien Le Toux

Disciplinary Summary
67′ — PHI: Austin Berry (Off the ball foul) – Yellow
78′ — PHI: Amobi Okugo (Foul) – Yellow
82′ — PHI: Cristián Maidana (Serious Foul) – Red
88′ — NE: Lee Nguyen (Foul) – Yellow

Referee: Ted Unkel

Match Stats

Philadelphia Union New England Revolution
20 Attempts on Goal 16
7 Shots on Target 10
8 Shots off Target 4
5 Blocked Shots 2
9 Corner Kicks 2
12 Fouls 10
15 Open Play Crosses 4
3 Offsides 1
2 First Yellow Cards 1
0 Second Yellow Cards 0
1 Red Cards 0
51 Duels Won 60
45% Duels Won % 54%
361 Total Pass 293
76% Passing Accuracy % 71%
55.4% Possession 44.6%

 

119 Comments

  1. We suck so much.

    • we suck so much

      • I mean.
        do we?
        Maybe?
        Yes?
        just…
        sigh
        yea.
        We suck so much…

      • The Black Hand says:

        We suck SO much

      • Great One says:

        Wssm

      • sieve — LOL if it wasn’t so pathetically true. This game was the real Union. The KC game was more about what KC didn’t do than about what the Union did. That was a game KC overlooked. This game even with Edu and Carroll would have had the same result.NE has a coach and a system and the players all know what their rolls are. We need a coach. Not only were the Union out classed on the field but there is something inherently wrong with the culture of this organization. This game was lost by coaching and the front office. There is no rhythm or purpose from top to bottom with the Union. I honestly think a lot of it is Hackworth taking once competent MLS proven players and ruining them. It’s just my opinion but this team is totally schizo!

  2. it sucks that we lost, but to be honest i had a lot of fun at this game. the biggest downside to me is this obnoxious jerk who sits a couple rows behind me who does nothing but moan and heckle the players loudly. he is like a petulant little child

    • Me too. The River End was so much fun tonight. We sang Bohemian Rhapsody. We chanted for players who haven’t been on the team for years: Mwanga, Califf, Roger Torres. There was even a Toni Stahl chant. Good times. Made this horrid loss much more palatable.

      • Loved the Bohemian Rhapsody! Do that again please (wasnt there, heard it on the broadcast). MLS chants in general are too scripted, but I always thought we were the more creative chanters…def better than NYRB, POR, & SKC…if only it translated to the field.
        Anyway, it brought me back to college playing days.

      • PainDon'tHurt says:

        Bohemian Rhapsody? Love it. I couldn’t quite make it out from 109, but it was sung enthusiastically. I’ll pick it out on the re-air. More of that and less of Whoa-oah and We Love Ya.

    • hobosocks says:

      I wonder if you sit near me. I also had fun and also have an obnoxious jerk heckler behind me.

      Actually, my name is Kyle too. Are you sure you’re not me?

      • if i am you this whole thing would be very confusing

      • One of you could be from the future where the Union never won a championship. So your future self would know the difference in play.

    • Same in the 128. Course that game was wide open for complaining. One of saddest walks to car I remember.

      • It was such a sad walk to the car that we were talking about the Sixers and the lottery. the freaking Sixers man. SMH!!!

  3. W.S.s.M!

  4. There’s nothing left to say about it. No obvious tactical follies, unless you count the inability to clone Okugo so he can play CDM and CB simultaneously. We just suck so much.
    .
    There’s a little bit of a silver lining with Pfeffer though.

    • There is nothing to lose by putting that kid into the 18.

    • Yeah but theres no shortage of things to blame Hack about. Like:

      Why the fuck even trade for someone like White if you would continue to play a converted striker over him? Seriously.

      Why have we been stuck with the crazy coaches the past 5 years.

      • Jim Presti says:

        White was kinda tossed into the Parke trade. It wasn’t a player for player swap

      • I’m fairly certain White’s most recent accomplishment is getting torched by USL Pro players. But I get your point.
        .
        I think both White and Berry have been practicing and playing below expectations. Did you see Berry today? At best, he played equal to that converted striker. Although I’m sure if Wheeler wasn’t taken off early he would’ve found some way to screw up also.
        .
        Though White’s and Berry’s lacking performances could just be a side-effect of bad coaching…

      • Atomic spartan says:

        Like last night, how many other games would we have won or at least tied if the FO had found a way to keep Parke?

      • John Ling says:

        Parke asked to be traded, presumably for personal reasons.

      • “Personal reasons” = “Being asked to play for John Hackworth”

    • Ahh, so that’s why Hack plays Okugo as a central defender…I totally get it now.

  5. I would like to personally apologize to Hackworth for all my b**ching and moaning about trying to play a forward as a center back. Clearly, Hackworth saw a lot sooner that Austin Berry is a worthless inept slug and felt he needed to do something. Wheeler should not be learning the game as a center back on the fly as he is, but obviously Hack thought he had no other choice. How in the hell did Berry ever win the rookie of the year award? If he’s not giving up on plays and failing to cover guys resulting in goals, he is playing like a buffoon doing some kind of cutesy dance move throwing his leg at the ball instead of clearing the damn ball out of the box. Berry is a waste and the season is over for this team, so Call up Marquez and let him learn the position along with Wheeler. Let Okugo play the DM role and bring up Riberio too.

    That isn’t to say I don’t fully support changing the manager. The team needs new guidance and direction. They just aren’t capable of being any good under Hack. It happens to the best of coaches, sometimes the team just needs a new direction. The KC win was nice, it also was not reality.

    • It’s hard to pick on Berry when the entire team was standing still at points.

    • I agree that Berry was absolutely useless today. It’s clear it’s not a fitness issue; he just doesn’t seem to have the right mindset. On NE’s second goal, Williams holds off Bunberry long enough for Berry to get back and…stand still behind the attacker, not even trying to make a challenge. Maybe I forgive that if it’s to cut off a pass to the penalty area but Berry wasn’t even close to stopping that pass to Fagundez. Two of the three NE goals that came from the run of play were partially, if not primarily his fault.
      .
      I guess this was the reason Chicago decided to keep a bench full of six-figured CBs instead of Berry. He wouldn’t even be First-18-material on a good team, let alone First-11.

      • If you watch the last game against KC, Dwyer’s absolute rocket is the result of Berry being a complete and total slacker and not running with/covering his guy. Yes, I understand the team as a whole is pretty brutal, but let’s start with the guys who make no effort and run them the hack off the pitch. Berry is public enemy #1

      • I think Hackworth might be #1. Personally I think Berry has a few screw-ups to go before I 100% support Wheeler or White over him in that starting spot.

      • Philly Cheese says:

        Time to bring Danny C out of retirement……just kidding…….I think I’m kidding……but…..

    • +1 on all of that. We are about 3 games from the point of no return. Barring a miracle during that stretch, let’s get the kids into the lineup and at least see what we have for the future.
      Yeah, slam Wheeler all you want, but he’s not worse that any other CB on our roster (Amobi is not a CB, as everyone knows.)

  6. Well here we are.
    .
    What can we talk about after a game like that?

    1. We could talk about the industrial CR7 strength hair product the New England uses. Their hair was as perfect in the 90th minute as it was in the first.
    /
    2. We could bring this back to John Hackworth. It is obvious that this team is playing their heart out for him. It seems like they would jump off buildings, run through fire and glass and smash through brick walls for the guy. Unfortunately they are jumping off buildings, running through fire and glass and smashing through brick walls instead of playing smart, disciplined, intelligent soccer.
    /
    Sure they are Philly Tough© but they play more like a gang that a team at points out there. It is really disheartening to watch out there.

    • very well put, This team might be behind Hackworth and that is just it! They are falling into and believing his style of play, which in my opinion is to just get the ball to the flanks and have open crosses all Goddamn day. If Hack was coaching well we wouldn’t see as many careless crosses put in the box, he would denounce it and i would think be pretty pissed off if they began to play this way, instead it seems that this type of play is what he is sticking with and its killing this team’s chances for success.

      • In defense of the crosses there is no continuity in the center of the pitch. No fresh ideas. No runs or runs made to open space for someone else.
        .
        The crossing is a direct result of the lack of how to use the center of field. IMO.

      • I get your point Joel, The biggest problem I see is movement on this team…there isn’t any. Knowone was standing around on New England, there were always options open for NE with complicated runs or simple back passes or square passes, no one was standing around.

    • Ugh. They don’t even know that they need a coach…
      They need Nowak, but on psych meds. Someone to teach them Discipline, in all aspects of the game.

  7. NE have been scoring a lot and the PHI defenders were mostly awful but this was so much better than the DC match last week.

  8. They have two matches in LA, one week apart. They should just spend the week in SoCal, chilling, getting to know each other, playing on the beach. Tonight they seemed so tense at times.

    • What? Tense isn’t the problem. It’s the lack of discipline: turnovers inside their own 65, marking on set-pieces, crossing vs combo play, Free runners in the box, the final pass inside our own half, etc.
      It’s all small, but soo important!

  9. Please explain to me why the guys playing down on City Island should not be giving the chance to play for the Union? What is the point to running out Hopp, LeToux, Berry, Caroll (I know he didn’t play tonight)
    Give Pfeiffer some minutes instead of Cruz and LeToux. Would Ribeiro be any worse than Leo Fernandez right now? Would Richie Marquez be any worse than Austin Berry?

    • I totally agree with you about getting players from the City Island and putting them in the 18. I’m kind of shocked that you’re putting Hopp in a category with Le Toux, Berry and Carroll. Anyone who wants to rip on Hopp this game didn’t watch the match or is just picking favorites. Yea Cruz isn’t my favorite player at all and has a lot to work on but holy shit He is one of the players who is an engine for this team right now and had an extremely smart assist that led to Nogueira’s goal, not many players on this team would have made that play. If anyone was truly watching how Hopp played tonight you would see that he was developing plays, especially after his first touch of the match, which I believe was a through ball to one of the Union players almost going at goal. He was moving off and on the ball and he in fact did get fouled in the box that drew the pk and oh yea he beat 3 defenders that were pressuring him at the same time and even distributed after getting out of that mess!!!!!!! He has been so dangerous against any defense on any MLS team. In my opinion, Wenger needs to sit and Hopp needs to start immediately, He has shown enough to at least have a chance to start as our striker or one of our strikers.

      • hop was serviceable in this game but that’s about a good a showing(and i don’t think it was all that good) as he’s had in a year. he is not the answer.

      • Yeah. Not good at all. He dove again, but ref took the bait.

      • He might be the answer or he might not be, He hasn’t played a full 90min all season, I just don’t think you can judge him yet, he did a lot more then Wegner who started and has been starting and he definitely got clipped in the box, he beats defenders all day.

      • Actually you can judge him pretty well at this point. Just take what he does when he is on the field for 30 minutes and extrapolate that for another 60.
        What dimension of Hoppenot are we missing?

      • Great One says:

        I don’t understand what is seen in Hoppenot. He’s a poor mans Cruz, which is basically almost not an mls player

      • Listen, I agree that Cruz probably has the most heart and gives the most effort of anyone in a Union shirt, but he is what he is. All effort not a ton of skill. Great guy to have on the team from a team player standpoint, but not a guy you are going to build around. Hopp… meah,

    • Fernandez played terrible. His first 3 touches were dead give aways. Seems he has regressed his way out of starting IX.

  10. Well, if nothing else it was entertaining. Fernandes really disappears for looong stretches of these last few games. Hard to do as the CAM unless the other team is focusing their defense on you, don’t think that’s the case here. Time to switch that up.

    Also, I like to watch as many games as I can, and Lee Nguyen is one of the best attacking mid fielders in MLS, very fun to watch (when he’s not torching the Union).

  11. Jean D Jeannot says:

    Watching Portland Vs Columbus and I am wondering how can Portland go out and get a guy like Fernando Adi(6’3 true #9)Gaston Fernandez (Antoine Hops fav player) and we are unable to find talented strikers like these guys? Are we focusing in the wrong areas of the world for talent? Sporting KC has a need for CB can we give them Berry and White for CJ Sapong? I know CJ hasn’t been the same but a new environment would do wonders for him.

  12. The Black Hand says:

    Noguiera’s goal was a cracker!!! That was the only positive, to speak of.
    .
    I think that Fabinho needs to play LB (crazy). Shanaon should go to CB. Both Berry and Wheeler were bad.
    .
    Fernandez is not a starter. Wenger took big steps back.
    .
    Zac came back to Earth.
    .
    NE just put 5 on us.
    .
    Hackworth might need to go. The players are behind him…playing like shit!

    • Great One says:

      Pretty good assessment

    • If you ignore positions, our 3 best defenders are Gaddis, Williams, and (gulp) Fabinho. Of course I’d add Okugo, but I much prefer him in midfield. The other CBs on the roster are giant question marks.

      When they signed Edu, I was really worried about them signing him long term. Now I’m not so sure. He basically plays the same positions as Okugo and Noguiera but is worse than both. I’m really still holding out hope he was just saving himself for USMNT duty. I wouldn’t rush to sign him to a contract though, not before I tried to lock up the other two first.

      • The Black Hand says:

        I’d still roll with Amobi and Noguiera in the midfield. Put Shaenon at CB, with Berry. Fabinho and Gaddis on the L and R respectively.
        .
        Berry was poor but I’m not calling him out as being awful…yet. Wheeler should be done, at CB, and I think he would have been, but for Fabinho’s suspension.
        .
        Pfefer should get a good look, in place of Cruz (at least as an early sub). Put LeToux up with Wenger. We need to get Maidana a speed coach. I like his game but, man, does he look slooooooww.
        .
        When Edu gets back, it would be nice to see him pair with Amobi. I think that those two could develop a real chemistry. This is if Noguiera can adjust to a more advanced pitch position.
        .

  13. Pat Glavin says:

    Welp, my prediction was off by a bit.

    • Told you it was shiiite and that we would loose by several goals! Predicted 3-0 ….
      Ask me for a prediction next time you make one!!

  14. The Chopper says:

    I wasn’t expecting much with an exhausted, banged up, short handed team returning from KC on short rest, but that was ugly. Fabhino’s yellow in the last game was silly and it really hurt his team tonight. I hope his teammates let him know it.

    I doubt it would have been this bad had Carroll or even LaHoud been available. At least Okugo could have moved back to avoid the disaster that was Berry/wheeler. You can’t get away with that center pairing against New England right now.

    Hack’s hands were tied for the most part , but my only question is why start Fernandez? He certainly didn’t ‘to play well in Kansas City. Why not throw some fresh legs on the field?. LeToux or Pfeffer would have been welcome

  15. Andy Muenz says:

    This game was basically lost Wednesday night when Hackworth waited until the 80th minute to make any subs despite knowing it was 3 games in 8 nights. Early in the second half, a lot of the Union players looked gassed. Of course, the first player taken off was the one in the starting 11 that didn’t play Wednesday night.
    .
    Once again, though, MLS can’t be taken seriously as a professional league when it continues to have an odd number of teams which forces teams to play on a different rest schedule than their opponent. This is the second time the Union had to go on the road midweek and then face a rested opponent while playing 3 in 8. That also forces me to reask the question as to why the game was last night rather than tonight? I’m pretty sure that if I drive by PPL park today, it will be empty so it’s not like there is a conflict preventing a game there.
    .
    I also need to mention that MacMath played one of the best games I’ve seen where a keeper gave up 5 goals. Yes, there was the bad clearance that led to the first goal, but he also made several super saves.
    .
    Personally, I don’t look to make changes based on this game but instead realize that the schedule was such that it was a long shot going in for them to get a result against a strong, rested team.

    • He made his first sub at like minute 55. Hop for Wheeler.

      • Andy Muenz says:

        Wednesday he waited until the 80th minute. That’s part of why so many players were gassed last night. Then last night, the first sub involved taking out the one player who didn’t play Wednesday.

  16. Fire Hackworth. Start over. Need 2 CB’s, a CAM, a left back, and a striker. No team in MLS can sign all those guys, so we have to draft and develop some. Marquez, Ribiero, Pfeffer should be given chances. And we need to have an actual manager manage the draft this year. How’d the Blake selection work out, Hack? Won’t even be able to trade him for anything worthwhile bc every other team in MLS knows we don’t need a 2nd starting GK.

  17. Maybe we’ll get Valdes back after world cup

  18. On The Right Track says:

    Coach Hackworth was right all along: Berry stinks. Cruz is the best we’ve got to score or facilitate goals. And most importantly we NEED “Captain” BC shielding our leaky back 4 or we’re doomed. The more we see the more obvious it becomes. Hack sees it in practice though and so he knew sooner!

    • Love it- everybody who ever whined about Carroll and Hack playing him, look at this game. Okugo is a way better offensive CDM, but he wasn’t there when we needed a mid to break up counters. (and I love watching Okugo at CDM).
      /
      We scored three goals! But it doesn’t really count because after you are down four, the other team will turn off a little.
      /
      With Fabinho, Carroll, and Edu unavailable, this one hurt, but maybe is just one of those games that you have to lose.

      • Not totally Okugo, but a mix the back line being immobile and Fernandez being s waste forcing Nog higher.
        Carroll may have only been a little better, but they had numbers all over, free flowing and direct!
        Oh, to be like NE! To play our youth and have a coach who knows what he’s doing or at least has a purpose.

        And how ’bout the Patrick Mullens? Good thing we got Blake instead

      • New England is on the rise. A far cry from this time last year. Yes they are young and I wish we were them— in that on the rise regard.

      • Last week Okugo did break up plays and counters- he was a one man wrecking crew. The whole midfield was off this week.

    • If we consider the above statement as true (which it’s not), then it’s still damning evidence that Hack is a poor coach.
      He made all these offseason moves and yet has to revert back to what he had…which wasn’t good.
      But if you look at it from a different view: the players that “succeed” in his team are all engine-type players w/ limited skill. What that says about a coach is that he asks them to go on the field and hustle… Nothing else.

    • The Black Hand says:

      With Carroll in, we would have lost 1-0. He’s not the answer. Might be a better looking score line, but a loss is a loss.

  19. On The Right Track says:

    And sadly….We suck so much! Time to play Ribiero (when healthy) and Pfeiffer.

  20. I know that probably no one is looking for a silver lining but at least we did better than Seattle did against them a week ago

    • John Ling says:

      Heh. I said that same thing to my daughter on the way home. “Oh, goodie!” was her reply. She’s succinct. And good at sarcasm.

  21. We definitely looked better on the attack and while hard to say this, Cruz has been a positive catalyst on offense.

    I agree Fernandez has been a none factor of late and should be a sub at this point.

    Hopp had some nice touches but he is what he is, a sub and it was really too late for him to do anything meaningful as the game was already over 60 minutes in.

    I too thought Pfeiffer looked good and he deserves some more playing time.

    Nguyen and Fagundez made short work of our back 4. Guys like them are too good for what we had out on the field.

    Final thoughts, Hack still must go and WSSM.

  22. Southside Johnny says:

    So meanwhile JackMac scores for a 3 game streak at RFK with his 3rd goal on the week and 5 in 7 games for Montreal. Salt in the wound.

  23. Old soccer coach says:

    Jay Heaps won the game with a tactical adjustment at halftime. He told Nguyen and Kobaiyashi to press up tight on Okugo and Nogueira thus negating their ability to cover Berry and Wheeler. The move did two things, it eliminated the offensive pressure the Union had developed at the end of the second half by forcing the creators of it to defend, and it scored goals quickly. I give Hackworth credit for gambling to score by going three in the back so early, and Austin Berry at least twice ran down breakaways from behind in the box without conceding PKs, but three backs against a precise counterattack has limited chance of success, better than nothing but not by much. Heaps won that game. Greedily and selfishly, I’d love to see Valdes back and Edu next to Okugo as DCMs with Nogueira ACM and Maidana wide left. Everyone who calls for the youngsters to come up from HCI needs to remember that HCI is not setting the world on fire and that there is an expansion draft next November whose rules are unknown, to us for certain and maybe to everybody, given MLS’s tendency to make it up as they see fit as they go along (see the different signing procedures for Michael Bradley and Maurice Edu, etc.)

  24. Sochaux was relegated from Ligue 1 yesterday. Based on what I have read here and elsewhere, Union will owe them an additional $150k in transfer fees for Noguiera which will push his salary into DP range, making him the team’s 3rd DP. I would think this ends any thought (not that I had one) of the team signing a striker from overseas that would make a difference this season. So what too old, disgruntled or bust of a striker within MLS does Sak want to trade for?

    • John Ling says:

      Saer Sene of NE. I don’t know if he’s even available, but he’s somebody they should look into. NE could use Carroll – one of the few places where he’d be a fit – so that’s *part* of the package you put together. I don’t know what else they need, but there’s probably enough pieces available on both sides to make that trade work.
      .
      Sene is injury prone, of course. But he makes a good stop gap for a year or two.

      • Sadly, this is about the level of player we can expect in any trade.

      • sieve!!! says:

        I have been a huuuuuuggggge fan of Sene for a while. Seeing how injury prone he is I suspect he could be had for cheap. And would be a good quality player for the Union.
        He would be a gamble but probably a gamble worth taking.

      • John Ling says:

        I agree. I think he’d fit in nicely into the center forward position. He wasn’t in the game day 18 yesterday, and I don’t recall seeing his name on the injury list (though I could’ve missed it; I didn’t look that closely).

      • sieve!!! says:

        Even off the bench he could be a great option.
        New England has a surplus of talent he is an expendable uncertainty.
        Give him a shot.

      • The Black Hand says:

        As long as he’s got a little speed left, we should kick his tires. We can trade Al.

    • Eric Hassli with San Antonio Scorpions. Wouldn’t cost much. Worth a look.

  25. On The Right Track says:

    Perhaps we shouldn’t be looking at bringing in a striker during the transfer window. This team NEEDS a big, strong, steadying CB in the worst way. We got spoiled having Jeff Parke (and Valdes before him.) Take away Brian Carrol and our defense is literally SWISS CHEESE.

    ….then again why bring in anyone at this point. We may as well go young and take our lumps.

    • I thought we did the whole ‘go young & take our lumps’ in 2013 as we cleared cap space. Didn’t we field the youngest lineup ever in MLS once or twice? Pfeiffer is the only young player I care to see because he plays a position we lack.

    • John Ling says:

      Bring up Marquez and play him. If I’m going to have a CB learning on the job, I’d rather it be Marquez than Wheeler. If they’re lucky, Valdes returns after the WC, and they can also send Berry to the bench. Otherwise you’re pairing is Marquez and Berry the rest of the year, and send Wheeler to HCI to continue his development, because he’s done decent (not great) and needs minutes.

      • I’m not sure CB is a ‘learn at the top level position’, unless you enjoyed last night. I don’t want to see kids for the sake of seeing kids, I want to see kids who might be able to play. Pfeiffer is the only one right now who fits that description. The rest belong at H-burg where they can improve away from the mess that PPL has become.

      • sieve!!! says:

        Last night may keep happening whether we like it or not. If so if they do might as well baptize our future by fire.

  26. Yeah, go young and take lumps. Wow, seems like Mullins would have looked good in a Union kit. Of course, the way he was diving yesterday, he’d fit right in with Hoppenot. But anything would be better than having our #1 draft choice play exactly ZERO minutes in MLS. As if the team is so good that we couldn’t use a good rookie player. Holy Cannoli, Hackworth screwed up that draft unbelievably.

    I am concerned about one thing. My family and I like the Union bc it’s not a ton of rich players removed from real life like NBA. It’s basically a bunch of regular guys who are awesome athletes, and maybe a few DP’s. Over the last few years I’ve come to like the players and the team in an almost personal way.

    But the nonsense with Hackworth and some players acting like it’s them vs the world is worrisome. The fans, and especially the River End are almost always upbeat, singing for garbage time goals and being generally optimistic. If the team is going to cast itself defensively as isolated from the fans, who only cheered collectively to fire Hackworth once as far as I know, they’re going to lose the good will of STH and everyone else.

    As the guys on DoopCast said, they Union shouldn’t be playing for the “organization.” They should be playing for the fans.

    • Surely you’re not referring to the “best draft ever?”

    • I hope the players weren’t complaining about the fans?! It was 5-1 at one point for gods sake! We’re not the ones who came out at halftime looking like we just ate at an all you can eat buffet! I hope they have more class than that. It was generally fun hearted I thought.

  27. John Ling says:

    One thing I found odd – and interesting – was that Pedro Ribeiro was on the Union’s injury report at the start of the game (listed as “out”). Is it typical for players who are loaned to HCI to appear on the Union’s injury list? Or has he been quietly recalled, and just couldn’t go this match?

  28. DarthLos117 says:

    The Union ills are global.
    .
    Tactics, coaching, execution and most importantly ability. Don’t fool yourselves into believing the roster is stronger than it is.
    .
    Every lineup move we’ve clamored for has been u successful. Now there’s calls for Ribiero and Pfeffer to start…desperation has clouded judgement.
    .
    Honestly, there is no one fix or move that would correct our team…at least game day is still fun.

  29. Ill Zommy says:

    How many Union players could reliably slot into most MLS teams’ starting lineups? I counted four: Nogueira, Okugo, Williams and Edu. We then have a few players who could be good additions to most teams (e.g., Maidana and Gaddis); after that, is there another player on the roster who is good enough (or in the case of Pfeffer or Blake, ready enough) to play reliably in this league?

    Look at the players we’ve brought in from other teams: Berry, Bone and White. None of them could play for their old teams, and none is really good enough to play here (though I don’t think Berry is nearly as bad as others seem to).

    I try to always support the players, but with a couple of exceptions, this Hackworth and Sakiewicz crafted roster is a mess. Hackworth’s knowledge of the US youth game served him well early in his ability to draw undervalued players to the Union (Williams, the Farfans) but that well has dried up. Sakiewicz? What is he good for? Absolutely nothing. Say it again. Hunh!

  30. I just read that Drogba is free. Calling it now, he will play in Philly

    • I don’t want didier drogba. man. no more old ass european players looking for a payday in this league.

      • The Black Hand says:

        Drogba is from Africa. If we are talking European players, Craig Bellamy is exactly what we need. I’m open to any Europeans, old and young, as long as they still have the heart.
        .

  31. “Every lineup move we’ve clamored for has been unsuccessful.” I’m so glad someone said this. Where are all the Berry fans now, hmm? And the Carroll haters? Hack is pretty bad, but he got some decisions right. I still think we need a real tactical coach, but not mid-season.
    /
    I think the Union needed a real leader on the field last night. Someone to rally them when we go down a goal or two. Of course they can be frustrated for a minute but then they need to get their heads back in the right mindset. Nogueira helped by running the ball back and being ready to play again, but we need more of that from all of the players.
    /
    WSSM? So much for “We Love Ya”. It wasn’t like the U gave up last night. I get the frustration, but geez guys, where’s the support? No wonder the players think we hate them.

  32. In response to I-127 :::: Last night’s walk to the car had me upside down- like when you love your children to death but they are doing shit at the moment that makes you not like them very much. Well this Union team right now is my prodigal son.
    .
    I spent in the ballpark of $175 for that game when all the math is done.
    .
    PLAY BETTER.
    .
    There is nothing I would rather do than laud the magnificence of The philadelphia Union and when they earn it — I Will.

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