Daily news roundups

Reaction to Meulensteen/Sugarman presser, reaction to US loss to COL, more FIFA investigation fallout

Photo: Earl Gardner

Philadelphia Union

Friday’s press conference announcing the hiring of Rene Meulensteen as a consultant was somewhat overshadowed by the appearance of team owner Jay Sugarman in what was his first appearance in a Union press conference in five years (you can read a transcript of the press conference here at PSP). And that is not a bad thing, as Sugarman announced the club’s intention to hire a sporting director, discussed the clear delineation of roles and responsibilities in the club’s front office, and also emphasized the central importance of the Union Academy in the team’s strategy for long-term success (Union Tally has a good breakdown of key points from the press conference).

Meulensteen said of the academy, “I’m not going to blow the trumpet here because I’m now sort of a part of the Philadelphia Union as a consultant, and I’ve got loads of things to compare with. This will become the envy of America. I’ll tell you that now. It’s not only the academy but the school that’s attached to it. They’ve got the right vision and philosophy.”

He added, “This is the strategy that I strongly believe in. Because when you get it right and you get that timing belt right, it will just keep growing. The most important thing is that you develop players that have the Philadelphia Union blood running through their veins.”

So, what exactly will Meulensteen do, aside from the scouting related advice he discussed in the press conference? “The most important job for me is to create an elite, high-performance climate and environment,” he said. “That’s the most important thing. Jay made it very clear, we’re not going to outspend people by bringing in these million-dollar designated players. And I agree with him. That’s one of the things that attracted me coming here. They want to spend it smart.”

Reports and reaction from the press conference from PSP (1), PSP (2), Philadelphia UnionInquirer, Daily News, Delco Times, Union Tally, CSN Philly, Philly Soccer NewsMLSsoccer.com (1), MLSsoccer.com (2) Soccer America, SBITribal Football, Vavel, Playing for 90Reuters, and the AP.

The random draw for the Chivas USA Dispersal Draft took place on Friday and the Union have the 17th pick. Oh, well.

A mock dispersal draft at ProSoccerTalk has the Union taking midfielder Martin Rivero.

Looking ahead to the Expansion Draft on Dec. 10, the league has confirmed that teams will be compensated with allocation money for the player(s) they lose in the draft. A post on the league website reminds fans, “teams will be able to protect up to 11 players on their roster, and players on Homegrown and Generation adidas contracts will be automatically protected unless they are on the Senior roster.”

You will recall the ESPN report we linked to that detailed Nick Sakiewicz’s displeasure at Jurgen Klinsmann’s advice to youth players to go to Europe. Deadspin and Empire of Soccer have reaction pieces.

Andre Blake got the shutout as Jamaica defeated Antigua & Barbuda 3-0 on Friday night. On Sunday, Jamaica defeated Haiti, 2-0, with Blake saving an 89th minute penalty kick to keep the clean sheet. Jamaica advances to Tuesday’s final, where they will face Trinidad & Tobago.

With the recent birth of his daughter, Rais Mbolhi was not in goal as Algeria defeated Ethiopia 3-1 in Africa Cup of Nations qualifier. Algeria has already qualified for the Africa Cup of Nations tournament, which commences in January.

Dave Zeitlin has a long-form piece at MLSsoccer.com on Michael Lahoud and Kei Kamara, and the Ebola crisis in Sierra Leone.

Brotherly Game’s “You be the GM” series continues with Pedro Ribeiro.

Philadelphia Union Academy

It was a disappointing day for the Union Academy when they met their New York Red Bulls counterparts on Saturday. The U-15/16s lost 3-1, their lone tally coming from Alexander Soto from the penalty spot. It was their first loss of the season. The U-17/18s managed a point thanks to a 0-0 draw.

Sunday proved to be a bountiful game for the U-13/14 team, who crushed PA Classics, 7-0. Unfortunately I can’t tell you who the goalscorers were because, as of this writing, match details are not up on the US Soccer Development Academy website, and the Academy Twitter account tweeted nothing from the game.


The La Salle women’s team was defeated 2-0 by Rutgers in the opening round of the NCAA Division I tournament on Friday night.

The Philadelphia University men and women teams’ NCAA Division II tournament runs are over. On Friday afternoon, the women lost 2-0 to Bridgeport. On Friday night, the men lost 2-0 to Merrimack.

A late goal from Harvard saw the Penn men’s team finish their season with a 1-0 loss.

Bensalem’s Holy Ghost Prep defeated Lancaster Mennonite 3-1 to claim its second consecutive PIAA Class AA state championship.

Central Bucks West defeated Canon-McMillan 2-1 in overtime to win the  PIAA Class AAA girls’ soccer championship.

Great Valley lost 2-1 to Peters Township in the PIAA Class AAA state final .


CBS New York says the Red Bulls “are finally relevant” to the New York Sports scene.

Vancouver has “parted ways” with midfielder Bryce Alderson and center back Carlyle Mitchell.

On Saturday, the Seattle Sounders ownership/management had its annual meeting with supporters. What a novel idea.

Ashley Cole to NYCFC? Maybe he is ready to retire?

San Antonio Scorpions defeated Fort Lauderdale Strikers 2-1 in Saturday’s NASL Soccer Bowl championship. Reports from My San AntonioKSAT.com, KENS5.com, Empire of SoccerProSoccerTalk,


Asked what’s behind the worrying trend of the US giving up late goals, as they did in Friday’s 2-1 loss to Colombia, Jurgen Klinsmann said, “Many players are struggling to get back into shape after the World Cup, especially the European players. t takes a lot out of you. The World Cup is a huge deal; it’s a two-month, high-intensity camp that you go through. It’s understandable. And that’s why we concede a goal two minutes from the end, against Honduras and again tonight.”

Recaps and reports from Friday’s loss at PSP, US SoccerMLSsoccer.com, SIASN, ProSoccerTalkGoal.com, and SBI.

Player ratings from MLSsoccer.com, ASN, Soccer America, Goal.com, ProSoccerTalk, SBI, and the New York Times.

SI has three thoughts on the game, ProSoccerTalk has three things. ESPN says Klinsmann has yet to instill “the proactive style” he promised.

Klinsmann released New England’s Jermaine Jones and Lee Nguyen, And Seattle’s DeAndre Yedlin from the US team ahead of the first legs of the MLS Conference Finals this upcoming weekend. Also released was DaMarcus Beasley. US Soccer says none of the players will be replaced ahead of Tuesday’s game against Ireland.

Former Philadelphia Fury manager John Giles on why Ireland shouldn’t underestimate the US.

The US U-20s defeated Ireland 1-0 at the Marbella Tournament in Spain. The team finishes against Canada on Tuesday.

US Soccer’s nominees for Male Athlete of the Year have been announced. Clearly, the federation has a grudge against me.

Wednesday will be the 25th anniversary of Paul Caligiuri’s goal against Trinidad & Tobago, the one that guaranteed the US a spot in the World Cup for the first time since 1950. Soccerly remembers.

If you’re on Twitter, you’ve probably seen tweets from Ted Westervelt. Perhaps, like me, you’ve even been badgered by him. If not, or if you just want to know more, Vice has a profile.


The fallout from the release of the summary of the investigation report into corruption during the lead up to the vote for the hosting rights for the 2018 and 2022 report continues.

The Guardian reports Reinhard Rauball, the president of the German Football League, “has warned that Uefa’s 54 member nations could take the ultimate step of quitting FIFA if Michael Garcia’s report into World Cup bidding is not published in full.”

Former England FA chairman David Bernstein has called for a UEFA boycott of the 2018 World Cup unless there are changes within FIFA.

The Guardian reports, “The two whistleblowers whose anonymity was effectively blown by FIFA’s summary of its ethics probe into the 2018 and 2022 World Cup tournaments have submitted formal complaints about their treatment at the hands of investigators.” One of the whistleblowers explains what has happened at the Guardian.

Will Garcia leak the full report? Reuters looks at some of the complexities behind Garcia making such a decision.

Jerome Champagne, who will challenge Blatter for the FIFA presidency, describes why the report must be published in full.

We need to know what is in the report for two reasons. First we need to protect the World Cup which of course has a huge impact in the game and is the pinnacle of world soccer…

Secondly, the report needs to be published to start re-building FIFA’s image.

Rebuilding FIFA’s image is a very important part of my campaign and my vision. The report should be published, with the necessary redactions. I can only regret that these two objectives have not been met, that these two goals have not been scored.

Hahaha, “these two goals have not been scored.” Get it? It’s funny because he’s talking about soccer. Never mind.

FIFA says it has no influence over reports produced by the Ethics Committee.

The ethics committee is independent from FIFA and contains two separate chambers that mirror the system of justice in many countries with an investigatory chamber independent from the adjudicatory chamber

In line with this independence, FIFA does not have any influence over the writing of investigatory reports nor over the findings of any investigations.

Reuters reports, “FIFA confirmed on Friday it had received Garcia’s appeal and said it could not comment further. The FIFA disciplinary code states that if a case is rejected by the appeal committee, it can then be taken to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).”

Here are some editorial pieces on the summary report from Wall Street Journal (“FIFA covers up a report”) and the Daily Telegraph (“Governing body’s cynical gutting of corruption report”).

The AP has “key questions” in the aftermath of the release of the summary report.


  1. So Jamaica has qualified for the Gold Cup next summer AND is one game away from qualifying for COPA America in 2016. Might be a reason to keep a goalkeeper who is not going to be called up for international duty.
    Also, what about one of the biggest upsets ever on Friday with Faroe Islands winning 0-1 in a EURO 2016 qualifier in Greece? Yes, Greece who were a couple of PK’s away from the quarterfinals in Brazil 5 months ago. And the game Friday was in Greece!

  2. OneManWolfpack says:

    Didn’t know about the Faroe Islands win, that is really cool. Love me a good upset.
    Like what RM has to say about the Academy, and he seems genuinely interested. Hope he, and not just his company, are very hands on while he is here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *