Daily news roundups

USA advances to Round of 16, Union ready for Revs, more news

Photo: PSP readers Ian Mellanby and Pablo Mancheno at the FanFest at Copacabana Beach in Brazil.

USA

The US lost the game to Germany 1-0 but won the battle on Thursday, advancing to the knockout round of the World Cup after a win over Ghana and draw with Portugal.

And, by the way, thank you very much, Cristiano Ronaldo.

This marks the second World Cup in a row — and the third out of the last four, that the US has advanced to the Round of 16, There they will face Group H winners Belgium on Tuesday at 4 pm.

Jurgen Klinsmann said after the game, “Obviously, we wanted at least a tie out of [the Germany] game, but, overall, it was tremendous energy and effort by the whole side. Everybody said we had no chance. We took that chance and we move on. Now we really want to prove a point. We can’t wait to get to the round of 16.”

Sunil Gulati admitted, “It is a little bit of an odd feeling because you lost the last game, but we’re dancing.”

Jermaine Jones said, “We showed some people, people that were talking like we have no chance to come through to the next round.”

Describing his feelings of “joy, relief” after the win, Matt Besler said, “We’re proud of what we’ve accomplished. We’re still hungry.”

Klinsmann said, “Now we really get started. Now we can put this behind us, the whole group phase. As we know from the past, once the group is done, another tournament actually starts. The knockout stage is a completely different ballgame.”

Germany coach Joachim Loew said, “That is a tough group and the Americans were a bit the outsiders. Everybody considered Portugal a favorite to make it. … (The Americans) really have qualities, they fight, they can run and they really are tough on the opponent. If you beat Ghana, play a draw against Portugal, I think you deserve to make it to the next round.”

Belgium head coach Marc Wilmots said, “All the teams that made it to the last 16 deserve to be there. For me, it’ll be 50-50, even if people will make us the favorites.”

Recaps from PSP, US Soccer, FIFA, MLSsoccer.com, ASN, SI, Goal.com, ProSoccerTalk, SBI, The 700 Level, Zonal Marking, Big Apple Soccer, LA Times, and The AP. Postgame quote sheet here.

ASN on when a loss is a win.

ProSoccerTalk has three things learned from the game.

Soccer America on five turning points for the US advancing to the knockout rounds. The Guardian has five things from Thursday’s loss.

I’ll admit it, I wasn’t exactly over the moon when Omar Gonzalez was announced as a starter for Thursday’s game. He done good.

Player ratings from MLSsoccer.com, Soccer America, Goal.com, and ProSoccerTalk. Look for ours later this morning.

At ESPN, Jeff Carlisle writes that the US will need to posses the ball more if it is to continue to advance in the World Cup. Yep.

More on the next game at SI.

I haven’t seen the TV ratings numbers yet, but, according to the headline at TechCrunch, “WatchESPN’s Record 1.7M Concurrent World Cup Viewers Beats The Super Bowl.” There are a lot of provisos to go along with that number, but it’s still good to see.

Dinosaurs such as Ann Coulter continue to do their ignorant best to disparage the reality of soccer popularity in this country. Meanwhile, The Wall Street Journal wondered before the game, “Is this Soccer’s moment in the US?” In an article titled, “Soccer already has arrived as a power sport in the US” posted before the game, USA Today wrote,

Writers ask, “Has soccer finally arrived?” or “Will Americans ever embrace the beautiful game?”

They are stories that don’t need to be written. Soccer is already here.

USA Today posted an article after the game, “Soccer truly arrives in America as nation stops to watch,” that said, “But this, this isn’t just a bump in popularity. It’s a seismic shift.” An opinion piece at the Washington Post says, “American soccer is winning, and it will keep winning.”

Marketplace on how Millennials “kick up” soccer’s popularity. Newsweek on how social media is driving engagement with the game.

Philadelphia Union

Interim head coach Jim Curtin says of Saturday’s game against New England, the Union’s first in league play since the World Cup break, “It’s a big one. New England’s a team we’re very familiar with. They’re a big rival of ours. And it seems like any time we play in a tight game with them, we win, 1-0. If we let it get open end to end, we struggle mightily . . . We don’t want to get into an end-to-end battle with them, because they have some special guys who can get on the end of stuff.”

Curtin explained getting a result might involve some ugly soccer. “Any time we play in the up-and-down, wide-open games against them, things haven’t gone our way. When we keep things tight and it’s more set pieces and restarts type of game, we’ve come out on top with a 1-0 win…It’s not necessarily beautiful for the 90 minutes. It can be one exceptional play that somebody pulls off.”

Look for our preview and quick reference for Saturday’s game later this morning. In the meanwhile, here are previews from MLSsoccer.com, Soccerly, and Brotherly Game.

The Union Academy U-17/18 team finished third in its group at the US Development Academy playoffs with a 1-1-1 record.

Local

Harrisburg City Islanders host Charlotte Eagles tonight (7 pm, NSCAA TV, YouTube).

In PDL play, Ocean City Nor’easters, who defeated Baltimore Bohemians 1-0 on the road on Wednesday, host Jersey Express at 7 pm on Saturday. On Sunday, Reading United host Jersey Express at 6 pm while Ocean host FA Euro-New York Magic at 7 pm.

The Seattle Times has a report on the rebirth of the American Outlaws Philadelphia chapter from a writer traveling around the country during the World Cup.

CBS Philly has a report on how local fans watched Thursday’s USA game at the Piazza. LehighValleyLive.com has a photo gallery from the watch party at SteelStacks in Bethlehem.

MLS

League play returns in full swing this weekend. Check out the latest Footy on the Telly listings for this weekend’s games.

Chivas USA have waived forward Matthew Fondy.

My San Antonio wonders what will happen with San Antonio’s push for a MLS franchise now that Mayor Julián Castro, a big supporter of such efforts, is off to a new job in Washington DC.

World Cup

In the other Group G match, Portugal defeated Ghana 2-1. In Group H, Belgium defeated South Korea 1-0 to claim the top spot and will meet the US in the Round of 16. Algeria drew 1-1 with Russia to claim second place and next will face Germany.

FIFA have banned Luis Suarez from all football activity for four months for biting Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini, meaning he will miss the first two months of Liverpool’s season. He’s also been banned from playing in the next nine Uruguay games.

Chiellini said he believes that Suarez “has been excessively punished,” describing, “Now inside me there’s no feelings of joy, revenge or anger against Suarez for an incident that happened on the pitch and that’s done. There only remain the anger and the disappointment about the match. At the moment my only thought is for Luis and his family, because they will face a very difficult period.”

Elsewhere

ESPN reports, “FIFA has lifted its provisional 90-day ban on Franz Beckenbauer, imposed after he failed to co-operate with an investigation into the controversial 2018 and 2022 World Cup bids.”

17 Comments

  1. The Black Hand says:

    Win or lose, this was a tremendous victory for Klinnsman. He showed managerial “chops” that have never before been seen from an American side. Our future is bright!
    .
    If we are to have a shot at Belgium, Michael Bradley must step up. He has been downright awful, at times.
    .
    Demarcus Beasley is a freak of nature. (I would love to see him in Blue and Gold!!!) Anyone who is excusing players for poor conditioning, due to Amazonian elements, need look no further than #7. He runs as hard and covers as much ground as anyone…and he’s 32. He plays any position needed and never complains. Love that guy!!

    • Beasley at LB for Union! Yes, please very much.

      Not sure if this is actually a positive, but Bradley so far has covered more distance than any other player in the WC. Something like 38 km – pretty amazing given the conditions…perhaps his poor touch is due to the fact that his legs are oatmeal?

      • The Black Hand says:

        How many miles has he jogged?

      • He keeps running after the opponents who he passes to or runs after the ball because he can’t trap it. Beckerman was all over the pitch yesterday but rarely had a bad touch and made some big defensive plays.

      • OneManWolfpack says:

        So he would fit in very well here then!! BOOM!! HAHA!

  2. Oh Jim Curtain…thank you for fulfilling all my fears by already playing 240 minutes of the most uninspiring football imaginable (HCI & Cosmos) and now overtly laying out the gameplan for 90 more against NER. At least it was entertaining when we lost with Hackworth…

    • The Black Hand says:

      Can we PLEASE postpone the restart of Union play, until after the Cup?
      .
      Curtin’s Union have displayed some of the worst football that I have ever seen. I’m hoping that this has been some psychological ploy, intended to play mind games with opposing managers. We can’t possibly be THAT bad…could we?

    • What’s more important: beautiful soccer or 3 points. You can’t have both. Now choose.

      I would rather win ugly than take pleasure in “but we did play attractive soccer”

      One cannot force style of play when the talent does not exist. We have a few players who can possess, but most are not skilled enough to do it.

      I have said for the past 3 seasons, we get results when we play ugly. we lose when we try to play jogo bonito.

      • The Black Hand says:

        We could have easily lost, consecutively, to three lower-level opponents. That play won’t fly in the MLS. On Saturday, we will see what Jim Curtin is all about. The chosen XI will be quite telling!

      • Until the last 3 games though it’s been ugly losses or draws. The SKC game was an “ugly” win, but the Vancouver draw was ugly and attractive. I’ll take the 2nd half of Vancouver in a draw or loss yes, but the first half, and these last 2 games, is not acceptable.

  3. OneManWolfpack says:

    For the rest of this season, for me it is all about 3 points. This season is basically a lost cause, barring a stone-cold miracle. So, I don’t care about how they play… just try to win and maybe make a run.
    .
    With that said, if this weekend’s Starting XI even remotely resembles what we saw for the US Open Cup games, I am going to puke. Please: No Carroll. No Cruz. No Edu at CB. No Hopp as a sub. No Wenger (dude just flat can’t score).
    .
    Injuries will play a part I know, but please don’t come out as a Hackworth clone. I was willing to grant you (Curtain) the benefit of the doubt in the US Open Cup games… so please don’t let me down.

    • OK. So if you’re not playing Edu at CB, who does play there. (I *think* Berry is still injured, yes? A rib injury as I recall…)

      • OneManWolfpack says:

        As I said, I think injuries will force some of my requests to go unfilled… but I don’t like the idea of Edu at CB. I don’t think he’s committed to it, and I don’t think it’s the best way to use him.
        .
        I would play Berry if healthy, or White, if healthy over Edu. If neither are healthy (and I don’t either one is), then I guess Edu is the next best thing. Unless you go totally off the board and play Marquez or something like that

      • The Black Hand says:

        Where do you play Edu, if not CB?

      • OneManWolfpack says:

        I see your point in that the only logical spot, with Okugo in the midfield (which is where he should be)… Is to play Edu at CB. I guess you could play him next to Okugo in a 4-2-3-1 or flank him wide in a 4-1-3-2. But, I don’t know if either are ideal. I guess our former USMNT midfielder is now one of our CB. I just don’t think he likes that at all… nothing to base that on – that’s he doesn’t like it, is just my opinion of course.

  4. I HAD to click the link to the Coulter article out of sheer morbid curiosity. I didn’t stay there long. It literally turned my stomach- not because of what she says about Soccer but because of what she says about the PEOPLE who follow the Beautiful Game here in America. I’m Gay, too! Boy-oh-boy, she’d LOVVVVVVVE me!! 😉

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