Union release five, including Wheeler

Photo: Daniel Gajdamowicz

Philadelphia Union announced that five players have been released from the training camp roster.

The most notable name on the list of released players is Aaron Wheeler, who made 25 appearances with a goal and an assist for the Union. Wheeler began his Philadelphia Union career as a striker before John Hackworth shifted him into the back line last season. After Jim Curtin took over as head coach, Wheeler was restored to striker and made four appearance totally 37 minutes.

“We want to thank Aaron for his time with the club and we wish him the best as his continues his career,”  said Union Technical Director Chris Albright in a press release Saturday morning.

The rest of the names on the cut list are SuperDraft second round pick Aaron Simmons, Petros Kanakoudis, Aodhan Quinn, and Navid Nasseri.

Simmons and Kanakoudis were both competing for minutes at left back, where Fabinho has been unconvincing behind Ray Gaddis. Simmons gave up a penalty against Jacksonville Armada in the Union’s first preseason match of 2015 while Kanakoudis failed to prove he could handle the physicality of the American game.

Kanakoudis and Nasseri were on trial and will return to their clubs overseas while Quinn, a 2014 2nd round pick who spent last season with Orlando City in USL, faces a more uncertain future.


  1. Feel bad for Wheeler. He was given a raw deal by always having his position in flux. Maybe he wasn’t solid enough in one spot to remain a permanent fixture there, but still unfortunate for him.

  2. Wheeler seems like a good dude but he was not going to get any minutes this season unless there were a lot of injuries. He barely saw play last year and we will have acquired three new center forwards that are ahead of him on the depth chart by the time the season starts

  3. Hopefully Wheeler can get a NASL/USL contract and spend a concentrated year at forward getting solid minutes. I’d like to see him make it somewhere in a year or two.

    • Wheeler was well liked in Tampa by the Rowdies and got a chance to reconnect with them at least weeks match. Would not be surprised to see him return there.

  4. old soccer coach says:

    Releasing Wheeler and Kanakoudis marginally reinforces Kevin Kinkead’s “cautious optimism” on twitter @Union Rumors last night that the unknown striker signing is making progress. Letting a striker go when you’ve only got three others suggests another one might be soon available, and keeping an international slot free – Kanakoudis – suggests you may soon have need of it. Wish Kinkead would at least tell us in which hemisphere this player’s club is located, maybe even which continent.

    • The Black Hand says:

      Loose lips sink ships…Let’s hope that Kinkead and all other’s in the media keep hush on this one, until it’s in the bag.

    • I hope that logic pertains to CBs too, because by letting Berry go they are down to 3 (Vitoria, White, and Marquez) unless I’m forgetting somebody. Or they are counting Edu as the 4th and are OK with Lahoud and Carroll to play MF if needed.

      • The Black Hand says:

        Scary thin. A couple instances of bad luck, and we are looking at Lahoud starting at our #6 spot (hopefully). It wouldn’t be the end of the world (I think that Lahoud is an OK CDM), but it is definitely not an ideal selection. If they were to roll with Carroll, we are sunk…he’s THAT bad. We would be wise to pick up a CB/CDM.

      • Agreed. Our starting XI could certainly be competitive, but one or two injuries and our lack of depth could be big trouble. A CDM/CB signing doesn’t have to be some huge name, just someone competent. I like Lahoud but agree he’s better as first backup and spot starter.

      • Williams can always factor in as an emergecy CB if need be as well

      • As can Edu. With the Vitoria signing he is likely the starting DCM but can slide back if there is an injury.

      • The Black Hand says:

        I would rather see this problem nipped at the bud, with the club signing a CB/CDM. The #6 is a key position. He provides the outlet to the back line, and advances play up the pitch. I would like to see that position set in stone, so that the rest of the pieces can fall into lace around him. Having the DM ‘up in the air’ will always leave our foundation, of play, shaky. Find a spot for Edu and keep him there!!! Then reinforce the position that’ve will not be playing. Lahoud is a good player, but not a starting XI player…same could be said of Ethan White.

      • Old Soccer Coach says:

        The inference I drew from Simmons being let go is that Amaninpong/Jones is going to get a homegrown player deal and be loaned out to Harrisburg. You can shift Williams in to CB to cover an in game emergency remember. Wonderful, not particularly but it will get you through the rest of the game.

      • If Berry can’t make it onto the Cosmos for their preseason, maybe he’s not the player we all hoped he was.

  5. james lockerbie says:

    you know how sensitive these negotiations are, we wouldn’t want him to accidentally ruin the deal.

  6. The Black Hand says:

    Let’s get this Striker signed, ASAP!!! There’s work to do and the clock is ticking…

  7. Jimmy Trojan says:

    No, let’s waste $ on Fred and Brian ” waste of space ” Carroll. This FO is content with spending the least amount of cash and expect fans to keep paying top dollar for their football experience. This team has steadily declined since losing a true captain in Mondragon. It will be a long frustrating season with other teams with coherent management steadily rising to elite status and the Union, soaked in mediocrity, at the bottom of the table.

    • ‘soaked in mediocrity’ like a Cuervo worm sitting on the shelf next to a Calle.

      • The Black Hand says:

        Fred can actually play. Father time has caught up to him but he can still create and understands the game.
        Carroll…umm…he’s just done. Mediocrity was his high point (harsh but true). If Carroll is factored in as anything more than veteran presence and spot fill, we are toast…we’ve seen this one play out before. Hackworth’s biggest flaw was his refusal to move on from Carroll. His resigning has me nervous…

    • The Black Hand says:

      Fred was a good move. As was Casey…

  8. Old Soccer Coach says:

    We cannot fairly evaluate “the three old men” until the players’s Union publishes the salary survey results in May, assuming labor conditions are such that they do so. Part of your budget is the second string against whom you practice. You want the practice opposition to be as good as your budget allows. If it is all rookies it will be less effective as an opponent in a scrimmage. I agree we looked awful during Carroll’s shift against Jacksonville; his DCM partner was a high school kid whom he had met for the first time probably the day before in practice. Carroll probably is not quite ready to accept the “player-coach” label yet and his resume is worthy of such purely cosmetic consideration. Casey the same.

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