Daily news roundups

Why the Union fell short, USA faces Honduras tonight, beer deals, Garcia on FIFA transparency, more

Photo: Paul Rudderow

Philadelphia Union

At CSN Philly, Dave Zeitlin lays out five reasons the Union failed to reach the playoffs:

  1. Midseason coaching change
  2. Too many “must-win” games
  3. Failure to close out games
  4. Not enough goal-scorers
  5. Depth in the wrong positions

At the Daily News, John Smallwood points the finger at Nick Sakiewicz for the Union’s woes: “Sakiewicz can hire and fire managers; he can bring in and get rid of players; but ultimately the state of the Union is a reflection of the job he, as CEO, has done.”

In a post on the league website, Dave Zeitlin notes that Brian Carroll, Conor Casey, and Amobi Okugo are out of contract at the end of the season. Zeitlin writes that, after Saturday’s loss, “Okugo deflected questions about his future and said the team still has some things to play for in its final two games.” Okugo said, “We’ve just got to play with honor. The fans have been loyal to us all season, so we feel like we need a good performance.”

More on offseason concerns from Playing for 90.

Power rankings: At Soccer America, the Union drop two spots to No. 12: “The curtain came down on Philly’s playoff hopes, and perhaps the long-term prospects of interim head coach Jim Curtin.” At SI, it’s a two-spot drop to No. 13. In case you’re wondering, if the league used a straight table, the Union would be in 14th place.

MLS has announced that in August of 2015, “season ticket holders will be given the opportunity to have their images printed within the numbers on the back of player jerseys.” The announcement says each club “will make this initiative available to a specific number of qualifying season ticket holders.” While the announcement does not describe what that specific number will be or how season ticket holders will qualify, it does say, “Specific details of individual MLS clubs’ activation of this unique program will be released by the clubs in the near future.” Activation.

Soccerex has announced that Philadelphia Union Academy director Tommy Wilson will be a part of the “Changing Soccer’s Status Quo” panel that will take place at the Americas Forum in Barbados on Oct. 22. The announcement says Wilson “will provide an insight into the measures being taken to increase production of young talent throughout the continent following his side’s acquisition of Jamaican goalkeeper Andre Blake, who was selected as number one in the 2014 MLS SuperDraft.”

Micahel Lahoud isn’t quoted in the article, but the New York Times looks at the challenges the Sierra Leone national team is facing in the midst of the Ebola crisis.


The Philly Soccer Six weekly awards are in. Villanova senior forward Hayden Harr was named Offensive Player of the Week; team mate and senior center back Colton Bryant was named Defensive Player of the Week. Penn center back Sam Wancowicz was named Rookie of the Week.

Penn is on the road to face Rutgers tonight.

The Intelligencer has a look at the District One boys’ soccer playoff picture.


The Wall Street Journal reports that a four-year, $40 million deal has been reached that will see Heineken replace Budweiser as the official beer of MLS. (The WSJ article is behind a paywall so click here for more information from a St. Louis Business Journal report.)

Portland Timbers and Alaska Airways have renewed their jersey sponsorship deal.

Orlando City breaks ground on their new stadium on Thursday and they’ve got some special shovels featuring custom painted designs by a local tattoo artist and illustrator. It’s all a part of a marketing campaign called “Paint the City Purple” enlisting the talents of local artists that began with the release of the club’s new logo back in May.

At Soccerly, Simon Evans on pro/rel.

The NASL’s Indy Eleven, home to former Union man Kleberson, won its first-ever home game over the weekend since its league debut six months ago. Naturally, a pitch invasion followed.


The USMNT hosts Honduras tonight in a friendly in Boca Raton (8 pm: ESPN, UniMás, Univision Deportes, Watch ESPN).

Previews from PSP, US Soccer, MLSsoccer.com, ASN, Soccer America, ProSoccerTalk, and Goal.com.

ESPN, SI, Goal.com, Soccer America, and SBI on Jurgen Klinsmann’s comments on Monday about how Michael Bradley and Clint Dempsey must prove they are still at the same level after leaving Europe for MLS. Klinsmann said, “I want everyone to grow in this environment, but the reality also is that for both players, making that step means that you are not in the competitive environment that you were in before.”

Klinsmann said of Bradley,

I think he’s been faced with a very, very difficult year, making that decision, going from a Champions League [club] to a team, Toronto, now it seems like they’re not even going to qualify for the playoffs. It’s a huge disappointment that comes along. You have to adjust yourself to whatever environment you’re in. You have to adjust to the environment he’s in with Toronto, instead of maybe an environment that plays Champions League football. He’s going through that experience now and still coming in now for the first time since the World Cup, he has to prove that he hasn’t lost a bit. Obviously we’ll keep working and pushing but it’s down to him and his environment to see what level he’s capable to play.

Klinsmann seems not to have the same concerns with Jermaine Jones, who, as with Bradley and Dempsey, he sees as a mentor for young players trying to break into the senior squad. instead seeing him as a mentor to MLS players.

Could Jones feature at center back against Honduras? Jones told reporters on Monday, “Me and the coach were talking, and we have some surprise for everybody. We talked and maybe you will see me in a new position.”

SI and The AP on Mix Diskeruds hopes for a larger role within the USMNT.

That knee injury that saw Joe Gyau leave Friday’s friendly with Ecuador is worse than expected. Surgery will see him out of action until January.

Omar Gonzalez gives ASN his take on how he and the US did in Friday’s draw with Ecuador.

The US U-23 MNT was defeated 3-0 by Brazil in Brasilia on Monday.

Fox Soccer has a good profile piece on USWNT forward Christen Press.

Mia Hamm has come out in support of using natural grass at the 2015 Women’s World Cup in Canada.


Speaking at the ABA Criminal Justice Section International White Collar Crime Institute conference in London, Michael Garcia, the former US Attorney who led the investigation into corruption in the bidding process for hosting the 2018 and 2022 World Cups, criticized FIFA’s culture of secrecy.

The investigation and adjudication process operates in most parts unseen and unheard. That’s a kind of system which might be appropriate for an intelligence agency but not for an ethics compliance process in an international sports institution that serves the public and is the subject of intense public scrutiny…Transparency is not intended to embarrass certain individuals by airing dirty laundry or to harm the organization by showing what went wrong, it’s the opposite. Where the institution has taken significant steps forward and made that progress transparency provides evidence of that to the public.

Garcia said after transparency, what is needed is leadership “that sends a message that the rules apply to everyone; leadership that wants to understand and learn from any mistakes or missteps the ethics committee may have identified; leadership that makes it clear to everyone — this is what we’ve set up the ethics committee to do, this is why they do it, and this is what they’ve done.” He explained, “It’s that kind of leadership that breathes the life into a code of ethics. Because true reform doesn’t come from rules or creating new committee structures. It comes from changing the culture of the organization.”

One such leader could be CONCACAF president Jeffrey Webb. At Goal.com, Jon Arnold writes, “Webb is a smart man who though only two years into his tenure is crafting an image for himself. Yet it is his commitment to following through on his words about diversity which will truly define his legacy -– and will show whether he’s a leader in deed or simply in name.”

Reuters reports, ” Violence at soccer stadiums in Germany’s top two divisions rose sharply in the 2013/14 season compared to the previous year, a police report has shown.”


  1. Blah blah blah can we all just reconvene in like two months? 🙁

  2. I appreciate this round-up! Well done!

  3. We need to stay at as a fan base. Stay on this organization and don’t let up. There’s no let up in asking for our support financially or otherwise wise from the Union. When they come with their PR stunts and money making schemes. We need too ask where is the world class striker or 2? Where is the quality skill and real professional depth? Why not align with stronger financial ownership and sponsorship equivalent to the size of this top media and sports market? Where is the homegrown and academy talent ready to transition onto the parent club. Where is our connection to a top organization from EPL,LA LIGA,SERIA A LIGUE 1 …etc. No more stonewalling from Sakeiwicz and cronies.

    • its funny that you talk about a connection to another league because i thought i remembered a couple years ago that they announced a partnership with hoffenheim in the bundesliga. i guess that is how pfeffer went out on loan with them last season?

      • I don’t think it was on the level of say NYCFC and Manchester City. That’s the type of arrangement I’m calling for.

  4. James Lockerbie says:

    Yea, I believe your right. We got some old guy on loan I think it was the 2o11-2012 season and he never saw the field or just a few minutes if my memory serves me right.

  5. OneManWolfpack says:

    Well said LCB… we can’t let the FO off the hook. We know the media won’t hound this team, like they would the Flyers or Eagles. We have to keep the heat on. I’d love to see Sak to hold a Q & A right now…

    • Well, Johnny Smalls got the ball rolling at least, as far as mainstream media voices go. It’s a start. Better than radio silence.

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