Daily news roundups

Union advance to USOC semis, league & USMNT news, Brazil-Germany blows up Twitter, more

Photo: Paul Rudderow

Philadelphia Union

Well, that was certainly satisfying.

Scoring early, and going on to dominate large stretches of the match, the Union defeated New England 2-0 in Tuesday night’s US Open Cup quarterfinal match at PPL Park. The scoreline easily could have included more Union goals.

Interim head coach Jim Curtin said,

It’s always good to play with the lead, at home especially. We haven’t done that much this year. We’re trying to make it a tough place to play again. There’s been a lull of games in the beginning of this year where we weren’t “protecting this house,” so to speak. But I think we stepped up and a shutout at home is what you like to see. I don’t want to call that a comfortable win, but it felt comfortable. It felt like we were gonna not give up a goal tonight, and that’s something I really like from our backline to our midfield doing a good job defensively and our forwards as well, defending well.

With his 47th minute free kick goal — made possible by a howler of a bungled save by former Union man Brad Knighton — Sebastien Le Toux moves to the top of the all-time goalscorer’s list in the modern era of the US Open Cup with 14 goals in the tournament. Le Toux has now scored has now scored 7 goals with 3 assists in the last seven games in all competitions.

Soon after the goal another one of those memorably dramatic storm fronts rolled through, interrupting the game with a one hour stoppage of play.

With the win, the Union advance to the tournament semifinals where they will face the winner of tonight’s Carolina RailHawks-FC Dalls game on the road on Aug. 12. Curtin said, “It’s been a busy, crazy schedule, but like we said in the locker room, I told them, ‘You know, we’re two games from being in the first final this club has ever been in so that’s something special.’ Hopefully you sit back now and watch the Dallas-Carolina game tomorrow, you hope there’s five or six red cards, and you go from there.”

Recaps from PSP, Philadelphia Union, US Soccer, TheCup.us, Inquirer, Delco Times, CSN Philly, South Jersey Times, Burlington County Times, News Journal, Main Line Media News, Philly Soccer News, New England Revolution (1), New England Revolution (2), Boston Globe, New England Sports Network, New England Soccer News, MLSsoccer.com, Soccerly, Soccer America, and The American Pitch. Our photo essay will be available soon. In the meanwhile, photo galleries from MLSsoccer.com and USA Today.

Video of Jim Curtin’s postgame press conference and locker room interviews with Sebastien Le Toux and Amobi Okugo, as well as a postgame quote sheet, here at PSP.

Main Line Media News reports, “According to Philadelphia Union manager Jim Curtin, Jamaican golden boot winner Brian Brown, reported to have been loaned to the Union, has passed his physical and will begin training with the team this week.”

More power rankings? Sure! At MLSsoccer.com, the Union come drop one spot to No. 13: “The Power Rankings Politburo hopes this team can land Carlos Valdes. It’d be great to have him back in the league.” So say we all.

Amobi Okugo comes in at No. 10 in the latest Castrol Index Top 20 Performers list. In the Full Castrol Index, the top five Union players are Conor Casey (No. 20), Andrew Wenger (No. 31), Leo Fernandes (No. 61), Okugo (No. 65), and Danny Cruz (No. 78).

At Brotherly Game, Andrew Stoltzfus with the good, the bad, and the ugly from last Friday’s loss in Dallas.

Also at Brotherly Game, why the Union should counterattack more.


OCean City Nor’easters are on the road to Brooklyn to face FA EURO-NY Magic tonight.

Union loanee Jimmy McLaughlin, former Union trialist Jose Barril, and Matt Bahner, have been named from Harrisburg City Islanders to the USL PRO Team of the Week. Union loanee Richie Marquez, and former Union man Morgan Langley, received honorable mentions.

Harrisburg head coach Bill Becher says of Langley and McLaughlin,

Morgan and Jimmy are flying. They’re scoring goals, they’re setting goals up. They’re finding each other. They can be very good. It’s just a matter of consistency and doing it game in and game out.

When we go through them, we’re tough to defend in the league. We have to always do a good job to keep them involved and they have to work hard to keep themselves involved…We know they bring a lot to our attack.

WFMZ69 has a report on Reading United’s playoff ambitions.

The Penn State men’s team has announced eight new incoming players.


The three remaining US Open Cup quarterfinal games kickoff tonight. At 7:30 pm, Carolina RailHawks host FC Dallas, and Atlanta Silverbacks host Chicago Fire (livestream at ChicagoFire.com.) At 10:30, Seattle host Portland (Livestream at USsoccer.com).

Sporting Kansas City have signed midfielder Michael Kafari.

Vancouver Whitecaps and the City of New Westminster have announced plans to launch a new USL PRO team in 2015.


Fifth place Chicago (21 points) hosts sixth place Portland (21 points) tonight at 8 pm (NSCAA TV, YouTube).


USA Today talks to Alexi Lalas about the USMNT’s performance at the World Cup. Lalas says,

Many of the things that we celebrated with this team are not revolutionary. I think that they are a constant, and many of the things that the masses celebrated are traditionally things that this U.S. team has been good at.

I think it’s an evolutionary thing and this team is a better version of itself under Jurgen Klinsmann, but I certainly think there are things this team could have done better…

The way in which they played in this World Cup is basically the same way this U.S. team has played for a number of years, and while we can celebrate it, we shouldn’t celebrate that this is something new and revolutionary…

If there was improvement over the last four years, I don’t think it’s too much to ask the head coach to be able to cite how this team has improved. There are questions I have for this team and I have for Jurgen, and I think that they are fair and they are legitimate…

But there are some questions. And when you promise to have this team play, to use his word, in a more “proactive” approach, a team that takes it to other teams and dictates the rhythm of the play, and then to get to the World Cup and it’s just more of the same…it leaves you scratching the head. It leaves you asking legitimate questions: How far have we progressed? In what way have we progressed? And how quickly have we progressed?

Graham Parker writes at the Guardian,

Klinsmann, with his longer-term vision for the 2018 team, would probably concede that for all its historic faults, some of which persist, the MLS will be the cornerstone of meaningful technical advancement in the USA, if it is to happen at all. A rinse-and-repeat four-year cycle of finding talented US players wherever they happen to be around the world will not take the country any further than it has already gone.

For the league, which has expanded the number of clubs rapidly, and by extension transformed its ownership culture in recent years, the return of the US players is part of a strategy that has started to shift from a focus on dedicated stadiums and infrastructure, towards technical development.


Apparently, San Diego State University official clothing shop has been trying to trademark the phrase “I believe that we will win” since 2011, never mind that the chant started at the Naval Academy Prep School in the 1990s and has been used in numerous athletic settings. ABCNews10 reports the trademark claim will be “published for opposition on July 22, which means if no one challenges it within 30 days the rights belong to SDSU.” More on the story here.


It is Netherlands vs. Argentina in today’s World Cup semifinal game (4 pm:ESPN, Univision, Univision Deportes, ESPN3, ESPN Deportes +, WatchESPN, Univision Deportes En Vivo, AFN Sports, ESPN Radio, ESPN Deportes Radio, Futbol de Primera Radio, SiriusXM FC). Whether or not Robin van Persie will play will be a game time decision. Seems he has a stomach bug.

At the Guardian, Owen Gibson writes that the mood in Brazil is a mixture of “mutiny and mourning” after Brazil’s shocking humiliating crushing woeful hilarious historic 7-1 semifinal loss at the hands of Germany on Tuesday.

Soccer America reports, “With 35.6 million tweets, the Brazil-Germany match was the most-discussed single sports game ever on Twitter, smashing the previous record of 24.9 million tweets set during the 2014 Super Bowl.

Mideastsoccer.com reports,

A purported letter by the Islamic State, the jihadist group that controls chunks of Syria and Iraq, has warned world soccer body FIFA not to hold the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, reviving concerns first raised in a FIFA security assessment warning two weeks before it was awarded the tournament that there could be a high risk of terrorist attacks.

The letter, first published on Alplatformmedia.com, a jihadist website, and reprinted in an Egyptian newspaper, suggested that soccer would be banned in areas controlled by the group because it constituted “a deviation from Islam.” The letter further indicated that conservative, energy-rich Gulf states were on the target list of the Islamic State, which has conquered parts of northern Iraq with lightning speed and declared a caliphate in territories it controls.

Okay, this time for real: The 2014-15 season will be the last season Nike will be Manchester United’s kit maker. Reuters reports, “United are reported to be close to finalizing a 10-year agreement with German sportswear company Adidas AG that could be worth 60 million pounds ($102 million) a season, a record for a club deal.


  1. Great, so now that adidas is going to pony up $100M/yr for just one team, how much more expensive will Union apparel be in 2015?

    Soccer jersey prices are already at the edge of reason; I can’t imagine if they crest the $100 mark for replicas that demand won’t just fall off a cliff. I think they’re headed for a market crash in the next few years if things continue at this rate.

  2. If we win the Open Cup, I guarantee the front office will want me to think it’s a big deal. But, apparently I’m not supposed to think that yet because THEY CAN’T EVEN STREAM THE MATCH. If the tournament isn’t viewable at home, then I’m unconvinced it’s an important tournament.

    • It’s clear nobody thinks it was important. Did you see how empty the stands were?

    • You could have . . . you know, gone to the match? At the end of the day, the reason they weren’t kicking the USSF’s door down to stream it was because they’d actually like to put some people in the stadium. Tickets were dirt cheap and it was a highly entertaining game, so stop complaining that your laziness wasn’t rewarded and go to the game.

      • i mostly agree with you here but i they still should have streamed it. i’ve been a season ticket holder for four seasons now and i’ve gone to every open cup game at ppl park before yesterday but because of circumstances beyond my control i couldnt get out to this one and i was really looking forward to watching it at home

      • If the schedule were more clear earlier it would increase attendance.

      • First, kiss my ass for your assumption that I or anybody else didn’t go because we were lazy. I was unable to make the game due to a last minute change. I, in fact did buy tickets but was unable to use them, you self important dick who clearly is a far superior fan than anyone else.

        Second, I did go to one of the other Open Cup matches and it was some of the most horrifically bad soccer I have ever witnessed. Reports from other supporters and articles right here on PSP indicate that the other Open Cup match was equally as bad. So congrats to you. You got lucky and saw a good match.

        My point was only that it is clear the fan base does not put importance on these games in comparison to their regular MLS matches which are much better attended.

        My apologies to Ed, PSP’s staff, and the rest of PSP’s readers. I have never responded to anyone like this and I don’t like to see name calling and such on these pages but Tom, you really pissed me off. My hope is you’re a good guy who is either having bad day or just didn’t put things the way you meant them. Really, I do hope that’s the case. Otherwise, you’re a douche.

      • The first two games were tough to sit through. I now live 20 minutes from the stadium so I went, but I used to live in Reading and given those first two games if I had to deal with traffic on 76 and 476 just for that again I don’t think I would’ve gone. And I’ve been to all but 3 games in 5 seasons, so I don’t question anyone’s fandom for skipping a midweek USOC game. Shame on them for not streaming an entertaining game.

      • Andy Muenz says:

        Forget about the traffic on 76 and 476, just the traffic lights that were out and the detours in Chester were enough to drive anyone crazy…

      • Dan Walsh says:

        Yeah. Don’t do that. 🙂

      • I live 3 hours away from the stadium and work for a living. So not going to a midweek game has nothing to do with laziness. I’ll save the insults, you make it too easy.

      • 1. I had to work
        2. I take SEPTA to the games and it is a hassle
        3. It’s not lazy if you have something better to do.

  3. One of the reasons I did not go to the Union match was because I was downtown for the WC game which I thought was much more interesting and I did not want to see another game.
    I actually saw the game in the big room at Brauhaus Schmitz, which was very very special. It was almost as good as the Chelsea Champions League win in Tir Na Nog couple years ago. Anyway, anyone who was not at BS missed something else! The VIP room for Sunday has been sold out but they are thinking of making the whole place VIP. They will also close off South Street and they have a 20′ screen outside (Fado will not this time around). Hoping for a Germany – Holland final.

  4. OneManWolfpack says:

    Ridiculously unacceptable that the game was not streamed online. If this league wants people to take it and the US Open Cup seriously, you have to make it available. Total BS. Not everyone can make every game. Stupid… just stupid.

    • I have another idea: if USSoccer wants us to respect their Cup, they need to avoid scheduling matches on the same day as WC semifinal matches. I personally am glad that the US has a Cup and all, but it is so so stupid to have these matches now when the World Cup is on.

      • realistically that can’t be helped.
        You have to play these games at some point and the schedule is tight enough as is.

      • more importantly they need to allow teams to stream the games online without hassling them

      • OneManWolfpack says:

        +1. Exactly. Yeah it’s 100+ years old! but I don’t think they are in a position to not stream a game to those who want to watch.
        Ask the average person and I’m pretty sure they say it’s a tennis or golf tournament before they’d say a soccer tournament.

      • Fans Everywhere says:

        Or, you know, TV. Because there are NO cable stations. TCN. ABC sideband. FS1. WTF.

        This is a sport that is still building its brand. If it’s good enough to charge for attendance, it’s good enough to make sure it is available online and on cable. Invest in your future audience.

        How many tens (hundreds?) of thousands in this marketplace watched the WC game but would not go to Chester on a stormy Tuesday night? Wouldn’t it have been nice for them to be able to flip over after the German touchdown and watch the U kick ass? THESE ARE TWO MLS TEAMS!

        (Ok, one MLS team and the winning “MLS” team).

  5. Atomic spartan says:

    Yet another alternative: notify your fan base far in advance that the WC game would be telecast at PPL. As it was, those of us who came to watch it on the PPL Jumbotron lucked out when the FO decided to treat us all to watch the game from the air conditioned comfort of the club. Nice move, but if this was advertised as soon as the convergence of the WC and USOC games was known, ya gotta wonder: how many more fans would have been attracted to the USOC game? Maybe the best overall game the boys in blue have played this year.

  6. scottymac says:

    So the idea is to complain amongst ourselves and hope the nebulous USSF and/or mostly (entirely?)volunteer team at the USOC website makes changes to our liking?

    Interesting strategy. Let’s see if it pays off Cotton.

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