Daily news roundups

Sapong powers Union win, PPL Park opened to storm-affected Chester residents, league wrap, more

Photo: Daniel Studio

Philadelphia Union

CJ Sapong’s game-winning goal may have taken longer than hoped, but Wednesday night’s 1-0 win over Seattle was much needed following last Saturday’s thrashing in LA.

Jim Curtin said after Wednesday’s game, “Important bounce back from what was an awful performance in LA. I think the guys put a lot into the game. Were we perfect on the night? Absolutely not, but the guys stuck with it.”

Hopefully the guys can continue to stick with it when Montreal comes to town on Saturday.

Recaps at PSP, Philadelphia Union, Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News, CSN PhillyPhilly Soccer News, Brotherly GameMLSsoccer.com, Seattle Sounders (recap, report, notes), Seattle Times, The News Tribune, SportspressNWSounder at Heart, SBIProSoccerTalk, MLS Multiplex, Vavel (Philadelphia, Seattle), All Sports NewsSports MoleThe Sports Network, and the APUSA Today has a photo gallery from the game.

Check out our postgame video, which includes a postgame wrap with Eli and Greg, interviews with Brian Carroll, Brian Sylvestre, and Zach Pfeffer, and Jim Curtin’s postgame press conference.

CJ Sapong said in Tuesday’s press conference of the effect of the 5-1 loss to the Galaxy, “I think it’s a game that forced a lot of guys to assess themselves and assess what’s motivating them. I think that’s the biggest thing that can be taken from a game like that. It’s tough, but I think it’s good that everybody gets that self-reflection, and maybe we need to find what that inner motivation is again.”

Sapong shared similar sentiments regarding his own self-assessment and motivation upon his return from the facial fracture he suffered in the season opener at PPL and his return to the team after his time in the league’s SABH program after his DUI arrest in May. Since his most recent return, he’s scored 5 goals in 377 minutes of play — that’s a goal every 75 minutes — and is currently on a four-game scoring streak, tying the club record set by Jack McInerney.

Sapong said after Wednesday night’s win that since his return following the DUI arrest, “I’ve been aware of every moment and appreciated every moment. Honestly I have no regrets. Things happen in life that put reflectionary moments in front of you. It’s about how you respond to the adversity and right now I’m enjoying life off the field and enjoying it on the field as well.”

Long may it last. More on Sapong’s resurgent return at MLSsoccer.comPhilly.com, Delco Times, and CBS Philly.

Kevin Kinkead was on Soccer Morning on Wednesday to discuss the sorry state of the Union’s finances.

The Union is opening PPL Park today at 11 am to Chester residents who are still without power following Tuesday night’s storm. Residents will be able to shower, cool off, recharge cell phones, and will receive food and water. As many as 44,000 Delaware County residents were still without power on Wednesday night. A PECO spokesperson said, “Municipalities in the west end of Delaware County were heavily damaged. Hopefully, electricity will be restored sometime during Friday, maybe as late as Saturday morning.”

Local

In PDL play, Lehigh Valley United Sonic suffered a 4-0 road defeat against FA Euro on Wednesday night.

Saturday is Casa League Day at PPL Park. At 4 pm, Senza Nome and FC Ballers face off in the Women’s League championship game at the Union training fields while a VIP tailgate begins at Toyota Plaza. Then, following the fireworks after the Union face Montreal, the Kelly Cup championship game between South Philly United and FC Misconduct kicks off at 9:30 at PPL Park. Discounted tickets for all of the events, including the Union game, are available through midnight on Friday for only $20.

MLS

A busy night of games on Wednesday for the Eastern Conference. First place DC (34 points) defeated tenth place Chicago (14 points), 1-0. Second place New England (24 points) lost 2-1 on the road to fifth place Columbus (20 points). Third place Orlando (23 points) defeated Colorado, 2-0. Fourth place Toronto (22 points) defeated eighth place Montreal (17 points), 3-1. Sixth place NYRB (20 points) defeated Salt Lake, 1-0. Seventh place Philadelphia (18 points) defeated Seattle, 1-0. Ninth place NYCFC (17 points) had the night off.

In the Western Conference, first place Seattle (29 points) dropped their second game in a row, losing 1-0 on the road to Philadelphia. Third place LA (28 points) scored five goals for the second game in a row, defeating fouth place Portland (25 points), 5-0. (At least the Union managed to score a goal against them, right?) Eighth place Salt lake (21 points) lost 1-0 at NYRB. Tenth place Colorado (15 points) lost 2-0 at Orlando. Second place Vancouver (29 points), fifth place Kansas City (24 points), sixth place Dallas (23 points), seventh place San Jose (22 points), and ninth place Houston (20 points) all had the night off.

Ahead of the July 1 deadline from MLS to get a stadium deal done, more on Minneapolis suburb Brooklyn Park’s efforts to become the home of Minnesota United at MinnPost, Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal, CBS MinnesotaKSTPTwelve.TV BringMeTheNews.com, and Field of Schemes.

NBC Connecticut has a report on Hartford’s hopes to land a NASL franchise to be called Hartford City FC. Just like was the case with teams in the original NASL, the team will play year round, having signed on with Major Arena Soccer League to play indoors at the XL Center starting in November.

US

US at the Women’s World Cup

USA Today reports, “The United States’ quarterfinal against China on Friday has become the hottest ticket of the Women’s World Cup, with seats going at more than five times face value.

Fox Sports has a preview of Friday’s quarterfinal game against China.

The New York Times on how, despite grumbling about the US’ performance, the team has been able to keep winning.

Carli Lloyd admits the US has not played its best.

The Washington Post on how the US defense is keeping the team in the running at the Women’s World Cup.

ESPNW on Julie Johnston’s emergence as a star defender for the US.

The LA Times has a profile on US defender Meghan Klingenberg.

ProSoccerTalk on how Hope Solo is quietly a key part of the US defense.

Vice Sports and World Soccer Talk on Abby Wambach declining prestige.

US Soccer has announced the USWNT’s first post World Cup dates. The team will host Costa Rica in two matches, the first on SUnday,  Aug. 16 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh (1:30 pm, Fox Sports 1), and then Wednesday, Aug. 19 at Finley Stadium in Chattanooga, Tennessee (6:30 pm, ESPN2).

Crazy story at SI from Grant Wahl about why the USWNT’s last kit man was fired. Basically, it comes down to Nike not being pleased that Morgan Brian decided to sign an endorsement deal with adidas.

USMNT

ASN takes a closer look at the USMNT’s Gold Cup roster.

Elsewhere

Reuters reports, “Swiss authorities are examining development grants made by FIFA around the world as part of their investigation into the sport’s global governing body and its award of World Cup hosting rights for Russia in 2018 and Qatar in 2022, a source familiar with the probe said.” The source also said South African officials are not cooperating with the Swiss investigation as it relates to bidding to host the 2010 World Cup.

The AP reports, “South African soccer officials are being deliberately shielded from scrutiny over FIFA-related bribery allegations surrounding the country’s successful 2010 World Cup bid, an opposition politician said Wednesday.”

Reuters reports, “Argentine businessmen Hugo and Mariano Jinkis, who are wanted by U.S. prosecutors as part of the FIFA graft investigation, on Wednesday were denied their request to fight extradition as free men and were placed under house arrest.”

16 Comments

  1. OneManWolfpack says:

    There is also this: https://twitter.com/bylka613/status/613879617451986944
    .
    SO THAT IS GREAT.

  2. Kudos to Philadephia Union opening doors to residents in need of some help. There is football and there is life and they are one in the same. Football is life.

    • A nice gesture, sure. But how many of those residents are still without power today because the City of Chester had to focus its resources yesterday on getting the roads to PPL Park clear? Seemed odd the lights were on at the stadium and the casino, but seemingly nowhere in between.

      • Andy Muenz says:

        Actually, the city of Chester clearing roads would only help restore power. I’m in a nearby town where PECO was showing 80% of the customers without power whereas Chester had less than 20% in a similar boat.
        .
        According to the KYW report this morning, one of the issues PECO is having is getting to some of their equipment with roads being closed.

  3. Just listened to the interview with Kevin on the club’s true financial state. I’m going to leave the office, grab a sandwich and case of brew, and meet you guys on the cliff of Union despair. Save me a seat fellas, thanks.

    • Will there still be cookies there?

    • where is said interview located?

      • John Ling says:

        It’s linked above.
        .
        Kevin Kinkead was on Soccer Morning on Wednesday to discuss the sorry state of the Union’s finances.

      • It’s the Soccer Morning podcast. I’m actually listening to it right now on Stitcher instead of working 🙂

    • old soccer coach says:

      Thanks, Eggman, for encouraging me to listen to the segment with Kevin Kinkead at the link given in Ed Frnsworth’s article above. [In the “On-demand video stream” the kinkead part runs from 42:26 until 58:20, if that information helps others with similar interest.]
      .
      Some thoughts.
      .
      A very important point Kinkead makes is that Sugarman was vetted by the league, (and recruited by Sakewicz, probably), prior to the market crash of 2008. As IStar deals with real estate, a fair inference is that Sugarman’s available assets may not be as robust as they were at the time of recruitment.
      .
      The inference that the Union lack operating capital for player personnel moves because they have to remove old player salaries before they can address financing for new players ignores the constraints of the salary cap. NYCFC, with however many billions available from the Yankee and Manchester City ownerships, has to do the same with all players who are not exempted from the salary cap. The inference may be valid, the reasoning presented to justify drawing it does not account for a known alternative explanation of the behavior. For me, the argument is therefore incomplete and that segment of the overall case is unconvincing.
      .
      The suggestion that the defense of current practices made by citing investment in the academy and player development generally is rebutted because it all comes from the man who now owns YSC, depends for its strength on knowing the actual financial details, information which if Kevin Kinkead knows, he likely knows on background rather than for attribution. It is plausible, but not proven.
      .
      The inference of weak finances drawn from the lack of nets behind the goals on the practice facilities may have some strength, but to an old coach who had to focus on retrieving balls all season in order to have the ability to practice properly at the end of it, it does not reflect the attitudes of athletic directors and other financial administrators who never played the game or coached it. Such netting is easily cut by a business manager whose mandate on final review of the project is reduce its cost by 10% come hell or high water. I have had to fight those battles more than once. Kinkead may be right, but there are other potential explanations that he has not necessarily eliminated.

      I walk to the stadium from Lot C. A week or two ago those of us who park there noticed that the little derelict building across the street from the huge structure still labelled “Delaware Electric Company” where the Union Offices are currently located had temporary fencing around it. In the details my memory, bad as it is, has accumulated over the years about the Union, I seem to recall a goal to rehabilitate that building and move the Union offices into it. I have absolutely no factual evidence whatsoever of any connection between that goal and the temporary fence. Were my prematurely jumped to conclusion, that they Union were beginning to rehab the building into offices with less onerous rent and better customized layout, actually true, it would suggest that they are not completely without access to working capital.
      .
      Does my emotion think Kevin Kinkead’s conclusions are likely correct? Of course. My head wishes his reasoning were more thorough and his factual evidence stronger.
      .
      With full, grateful acknowledgement of my intellectual debt to “el pachyderm” for the point, secrecy of operational plans is a valid argument while the operations are underway of course. But commitment to a publicized PLAN directly violating such secrecy to some degree creates trust among those who are now, or perhaps may be in the future, consuming your product. [Please reference 76ers, Sam Hinckie, etc., who have created interest in most and trust in some by doing precisely that.]
      .

      • Many times when reading your comments I think, damn, OSC is way smarter than me…. kind of like Good Will Hunting… You get the girl’s number too?

  4. The Union winning is great and all, but for me the highlight of last night is Robbie Rogers scoring his first goal for the Galaxy on Pride Night of all nights. Love it.

  5. No Rose Glasses says:

    As much as it was a win – I’ve been seeing a lot of “we beat the best team in the West” posts.

    That team – had almost 1/2 its Starting XI out, and started 4 rookies, combined with cross-country travel, and 4 games in 12 days – and even with all that it was only a 1-0 win.

    This will only quell the fire until JackMac comes in this weekend and scores a goal – and all the – why’d we trade him posts will begin again.

  6. Atomic Spartan says:

    Why’d we trade him?

  7. So I listened to the Kevin Kinkead interview and good on him to stand in and paint the picture as he sees it…which is right smack dead on from mine and many others point of view.
    .
    I am not an insider. I am not privy to the boardroom. I don’t wander around YSC in the little meetings. I don’t understand the business demands. I see. I observe. I read. I watch. I draw inferences. I make educated guesses. The evidence plays out month after month, season after season. Until proven otherwise, what other conclusion is one to come to.
    .
    Good on you Kevin…. for saying “The current situation is just terrible.”

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