Daily news roundups

Union in Dallas, Edu & Okugo on switch, Klinsmann to test youth, WC ticket scalping investigation

All of us at PSP wish you and yours a safe and happy Fourth of July weekend. Check out the latest Footy on the Telly for listings of the weekend’s live soccer games on TV, online, and on satellite radio, including the World Cup quarterfinals, the Union in Dallas, and Harrisburg hosting Charleston.

Philadelphia Union

You’ve read PSP’s preview of tonight’s Union game in Dallas (9 pm: CSN, MLS Live, MLS Direct Kick, DirecTV). In addition to the others that we linked to in Thursday’s roundup, here are more previews from Soccerly, CSN Philly, David Murphy’s Philadelphia Union Blog, FC Dallas, Big D Soccer (1)Big D Soccer (2)Big D Soccer (3), MLSsoccer.com, and Goal.com. Video previews from Philadelphia Union, FC Dallas, and MLSsoccer.com.

FC Dallas’ Fabian Castillo has been suspended for four games for making contact with a match offical after the game with Portland on June 11.

Maurice Edu says of his move to center back, “It came about because Jim asked me to play there for a few games. That’s what I’ve done so far. The team has won a couple of games, so it’s good. … He said he wanted me to play there a few games, help us get a little bit of a run going. We’ve done that now, so we’ll see what happens from here on out.”

Edu says of the on-field relationship with Amobi Okugo, “When he was playing behind me, still communication has to go on. Now, it’s still the same thing. We still communicate, whether it’s me organizing him and telling him different things — step, press the ball or drop off a little bit — and it’s a conversation. It’s not just a one-way thing. It was like that before and it continues to be that way now.

Okugo on his return to the midfield: “It’s fun. In the midfield, you get more touches on the ball. On defense, you always get blamed for everything.”

Okugo says of the switch that now sees Maurice Edu at center back, “We joke around a lot about it,. But it’s good vibes. We’re just focused on trying to get the win – whether he’s playing center back or I’m playing center back.” Okugo added, “He’s one of the players I always looked at for success. And now that he’s here, we’ve become really good friends.”

At the Union website, a look at how Jim Curtin’s life has changed since being named interim head coach.

Local

At the Inquirer, Mark Jensen has a profile piece on Junior Lone Star, the city’s NPSL team. Jensen notes, “The team is largely Liberian immigrants — refugee is stamped on some of their immigration papers – but the club prides itself on its inclusivity.” The article is accompanied by another about the professional aspirations of Vlendy “Eric” Slueue, the 18-year-old Bartram High School graduate who plays on Junior Lone Star’s U-19 team.

The Philadelphia Fury, the team that will play in the new American Soccer League, have signed three players from Junior Lone Star, Amadou Sheriff, Seydou Ba, and Ayouba Fane. The ASL, which received provisional sanctioning from the United States Amateur Soccer Association in March and so far has six teams, is scheduled to begin play in August and will follow a European-style schedule.

The second half of the season begins for Harrisburg City Islanders on Saturday when they host Charleston Battery (6 pm, NSCAA TV, YouTube). At Penn Live, Michael Bullock notes, “Highly unaccustomed to being parked anywhere near the bottom of the USL PRO standings — at the midway point or, at any point in time — Bill Becher is glad his Harrisburg City Islanders still have a chance to get things corrected.” Harrisburg is currently tied for 12th place in the 14-team league.

Also at Penn Live, Bullock reports, “With victories in three of their four outings, the U-16 boys’ side from the South Central Pennsylvania Soccer Academy (SCPASA) on Wednesday claimed the Super Group title at the National Cup XIII’s Mid-Atlantic Regional in Somerset, N.J.” The team, coached by former City Islanders players Moffat Oduor and Stephen Basso, will now play in the National Cup XIII finals in Greensboro, N.C., July 18-21.

Wednesday was John Wanamaker Award night. Receiving the Sports Volunteer of the Year Award from the Parks and Recreation Department was Ruth Bull, founder of the International Tuzos Philadelphia Soccer Academy.

MLS

The Kansas City Star reports, “Sporting Club CEO Robb Heineman acknowledged Thursday that the club has received ‘enormous interest’ from overseas teams trying to acquire Besler, as well as his Sporting KC teammate Graham Zusi.”

Montreal have signed Impact U-23 midfielder Jérémy Gagnon-Laparé to a professional contract.

Jermaine Jones to MLS? What a tease. Guess who’s at the top of the allocation order: Toronto.

Given its difficulties in finding a downtown Miami location, it seems the Beckham group is now considering Broward County as a possible location for a new soccer stadium.

A guest column at the Minneapolis Star Tribune on why landing a MLS team isn’t a sure thing.

US

Jurgen Klinsmann on the USMNT’s plans for the upcoming year:

A good thing about this next year is that we kind of have the opportunity to see a lot of young players coming to our platform, coming to the senior team. We can give them time to show where they are up to right now. The experienced players, or the older players, we can tell them for the next couple of months: “Go play in your club environment, we know you inside out anyway, we know what you bring to the table.” But right now maybe there’s time for the next couple of friendlies that come up and over the next year that we want to see the young players grow and see how they can make it.

At SI, comments from Sunil Gulati on a wide range of topics, including the chances the US will bid for the 2026 World Cup.

Aron Johannsson will have ankle surgery before the start of the new season in the Netherlands.

Members of the US team arrived in LA from Brazil on Thursday.

If you happen to be in Miami on Sunday, there’s a welcome home party featuring Jozy Altidore, DaMarcus Beasley, and Fabian Johnson that’s free and open to the public

The AP reports, “The death of a referee who was punched at a Detroit-area soccer match has been ruled a homicide, according to an autopsy conducted Thursday.

Elsewhere

The AP reports, “Brazilian police who are investigating ticket scalping at the World Cup are alleging ‘someone from FIFA” is a source of tickets being resold for many times the face value.'”

FIFA said in a statement, “We have nothing to comment right now. Many rumors are circulating [about the involved of FiFA.] We are waiting for a meeting [with the police} to get details on the operations.”

Reuters reports, “An unfinished overpass collapsed in the Brazilian World Cup host city of Belo Horizonte on Thursday, leaving at least one person dead and casting a shadow over a tournament that has suffered repeated construction accidents and delays.

At The Guardian, Owen Gibson on the rise of CONCACAF. “With three of the four teams reaching the second round, outdoing Asia (none) and Africa (two) in the process, CONCACAF has boosted its long-running campaign for a fourth direct qualifying spot. Only South America, at 83%, had a greater percentage of teams advance.”

3 Comments

  1. Good for Eric Slueue but I think he should have gone to a Div I or even III College! Know him well since I used to drive him many times when he played on my son’s team.

  2. Soccer Fan says:

    The refereeing tonight makes me think of Tim Donaghy. EVERY hallmark of a rigged referee. Welcome MLS to the world of international soccer.

  3. OK…where can I get a T shirt with that snake flag.on it…or better yet THAT FLAG!!

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