Daily news roundups

NYRB kickoff time announced and other Union bits, USMNT news, more

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Philadelphia Union

On Monday, New York Red Bulls announced the game they are hosting against the Union on Sunday, Oct. 18 will kickoff at 3 pm. The game, the start time of which had previously been listed as TBD, will be broadcast locally on TCN.

In the latest Inside Doop, Dave Zeitlin notes “it appears unlikely Vitoria will return to the Union after his one-year loan expires.” Zeitlin also says Andrew Wenger’s performance at left back against Toronto “probably did enough for that to be a possibility for him moving into next season.” Zeitlin suspects the hobbled Maurice Edu is unlikely to play the final two games of the season.

While there has been no confirmation yet from the Union, MFC Podcast says 32-year-old former Motherwell, Everton, and Scotland forward James McFadden is on a two week trial with the Union. Philly Sports Network has some background on McFadden.

After failing to recognize his jaw-dropping performance in the road draw against New England, MLSsoccer.com nominates Andre Blake for Save of the Week following the road loss to Toronto.

Brotherly Game looks back over the Union’s September.

Power rankings: The Union drop one spot to No. 19 at SI. At Soccer America, they drop one spot to No. 17. At ESPN, the Union remain at No. 18.


Villanova was defeated 2-0 on the road by Maryland on Monday evening.

Drexel looks to end a two-game losing streak tonight when they host Columbia at 7 pm.


The broadcast schedule for the final two weeks of the regular season, aimed at featuring key playoff-related bouts, has been announced.

Zlatan “You Never Know What Happens in the Future” Ibrahimovic to Orlando? Zlatan broke PSG’s all-time scoring record over the weekend. He’ll make an interesting teammate to Cristiano Ronaldo.

Samir Nasri to MLS? Someday: “I see myself going to play in the MLS, to discover something other than France.”

Is NYCFC president Tom Glick headed back to Manchester City?

The league announced on Monday “it has partnered with leading sports broadcaster Fox Sports Latin America to televise live league matches in Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America, and South America, with the exception of Brazil.” The league already has a deal with Globosat in Brazil.

At ASN, Wendy Thomas has an interesting read on the history of parity in US professional sports and the success of MLS achieving it compared to “performance-centric” soccer leagues around the world. Thomas concludes, “Either system is viable—but which one is optimal? The question MLS needs to answer is, “What is the essence of the product we are selling: competition or quality?” Therein lies the course it must plot for its future.”

Officials in Sacramento are pointing to an economic impact study to support efforts to build a privately financed stadium that would house a Sacramento Republic MLS team. Sacramento Business journal reports, according to the study, “A soccer stadium in the railyard would generate $200 million in construction expenditures and $1.24 billion of economic benefit for the region over 30 years…the project also would create more than 1,700 jobs during construction. Once operating, the stadium would create 130 to 220 jobs, mostly at the stadium itself.” Sacramento Bee adds that, according to the study, the stadium could “attract up to 500,000 visitors and generate millions of dollars annually for the city and region”


The US U-23s face Panama tonight in their final group game in the olympic qualification tournament (9:30 pm, NBC Universo).

Saturday’s playoff game at the Rose Bowl against Mexico (9 pm, FS1, UniMas) for a spot in the Confederations Cup has sold out. That’s more than 90,000 tickets.

Giovani dos Santos will not be available for Mexico after suffering a muscle strain in the Galaxy’s draw with Seattle over the weekend. Fox Soccer notes some candidates to replace him on the squad. In case you missed it, here are the 23-player rosters for Mexico and the US.

At SI, Liviu Bird says of the playoff game, “The team that tempers the game’s usual emotions and maintains its composure will likely be the winner. If the last set of friendlies is any indication, Mexico is better equipped to handle the match-up right now than the Americans.”

Michael Bradley disagrees: “For me, when you talk about this game, form goes out the window. Whatever’s happened in the past few months, whatever has been achieved in the past few months, whatever’s written, whatever’s said, when that whistle blows, it doesn’t count for anything. It doesn’t mean anything. It’s about two teams who will step on the field looking to impose themselves on the other and we’ll see on a big day who can come out on top.”

Soccer America on how the collection of veterans representing the US in Saturday’s game will mark the beginning of the changing of the guard for the team with a new crop of younger regulars.

Jozy Altidore tells ESPN the past two years have been the hardest of his career.

At MLSsoccer.com, a primer on Saturday’s game. At Soccer Gods, how the USA-Mexico soccer rivalry “mirrors the immigration debate in the US.”

Well played, Nick Rimando, well played.

At the US Soccer website, two good reads in history pieces about the World Cup playoff game against Mexico in 1934, and the last time the US participated in a playoff game, the 1976 game against Canada to be the North American representative in what was then served as the CONCACAF World Cup qualification tournament, the CONCACAF Championship.

At the Guardian, another good history read on Shep Messing’s experiences leading up to, and including, the 1972 Olympics/


Reuters reports, “South Korea’s Chung Mong-joon has said he is facing a 15-year suspension by FIFA’s Ethics Committee that has ‘sabotaged’ his campaign for the FIFA Presidency, but he denied any wrongdoing and vowed to continue his bid to lead soccer’s world governing body.” While confidentiality rules forbid FIFA’s Ethics Committee from discussing the charges against Chung, the FIFA presidential candidate says, “The fundamental reason why I am being targeted is that I aimed straight at the existing power structure of FIFA…Ethics committee is not charging me with criminal offense, and it is not charging me with ‘bribery,’ ‘corruption’ or ‘conflict of interest’.”

Rafael Esquivel (sadly, no relation), the former head of Venezuela’s FA and ex-member of CONMEBOL’s executive committee who was among those arrested in Zurich in May as part of the FIFA corruption scandal, has been denied a request to be freed on grounds of ill health by Swiss authorities. The Swiss Federal Court’s appeals chamber said in a statement, “The court held that there was a risk that the appellant would abscond if released. The arguments put forward in support of his release, such as his advanced age and poor state of health, were not regarded as sufficient to counter the risk of absconding.” More at the AP.

There was a fire at Luzhniki Stadium, the 2018 World Cup venue in Moscow, on Monday.

USA Today has an interesting read on the Syrian national team, which has never qualified for the World Cup, is on the verge of advancing to Asia’s final qualification round. While the team’s good run in qualification thus far is impressive given the ongoing civil war, the fact that the team is entirely controlled by Assad regime.

From the Press Association: “Depression and mental health problems in football are widespread with more than a third of players reporting symptoms, according to new research. The international players’ union, Fifpro, said 38% of the 607 players interviewed reported having problems at some stage – especially those who had suffered serious injuries. In the general population, the figure is between 13 and 17%.”


  1. McFadden is definitely not the type of player I’m excited about joining the union–and not the type of player to find success lately in MLS. Aging Scottish stars haven’t exactly hit it big here. Besides, I’m really only interested in investing in aging strikers if their pedigree is the type that would put them out of the Union’s budget anyway.
    That said, I feel like the McFadden thing is getting more press than it deserves. Lots of older guys have trialed with the Union previously, and most of them haven’t stuck. McFadden getting so much attention on Twitter, etc. is probably more a factor of slow news than him being any serious part of the Union’s plans.

    • strange time for a trial innit?

    • Older guy stability.
      Maybe a Paunovic or a Casey.
      Maybe a dude who can reliably come off the bench at 100 grand. If he works out I’ll take it.

    • Yeah I’m fine with it if he is CHEAP and not asked to play every day. Other than that, no thank you.

      • Lets remember we have a whole new team to fill with players next year too. Could be a good mentor on the USL team? I mean it doesn’t sound like he was playing on a bad team as it is. Can’t really hate any trail at this point.

  2. Please no on James McFadden. The last thing this teams needs is a 32 year old striker. Especially one that doesn’t score.

  3. The prospect of signing McFadden would have gotten me excited five years ago. Now, not so much.

  4. Those depression and mental health statistics are shocking. I’m sure it’s going to re-ignite the ‘heading at the youth levels’ argument. But, if the interviews were just with professional players, I’d venture to guess the problem has more to do with losing their childhood to a football Academy, and less to do with hitting a ball with their head.

    • I’d like to see what the stats are for other sports. I imagine they could be around the same. Sports at youth levels are highly stressful situations. Like high school football in Texas. So much pressure is put on kids. Those numbers aren’t that surprising to me. If anything, I’m kinda surprised it’s not higher.

  5. McFadden — not so interested. Now, a couple of aging Scottish forwards that might — Fletcher or Naismith

  6. Landon Donovan launches Titter Torpedo about JK being fired if USMNT lose against Mexico: “Anywhere else in the world if this coach had had [such poor] results and they lose this game against Mexico, they’d be fired.”
    Depth to sonar….One ping please…Vassily.

  7. ever been in Sacremento in June, July, August or September? Good luck to them, but at best its a dry heat.

    Landon is correct, not that he has an axe to grind – I believe he is switching to a chain saw.

    And its nice that McFadden is getting a trial. Based on below, pass:

    Years Team Apps (Gls)
    2000–2003 Motherwell 63 (26)
    2003–2008 Everton 109 (11)
    2008–2011 Birmingham City 82 (13)
    2011–2012 Everton 7 (0)
    2012–2013 Sunderland 3 (0)
    2013–2014 Motherwell 40 (9)
    2014–2015 St. Johnstone 16 (1)

  8. To Mr Jay Sugarman I would like to commend you for doing what needed to be done to save this franchise. The one thing that was extremely off putting was the feeling that the ownership/CEO didn’t really care or give a 2nd thought to this fan base and just wanted us to show up and spend money. The other thing even more disturbing is the quality of players that the Union were putting of the field game in and game out as starters. The Philadelphia Union are perennial bottom dwellers even in a weak conference. LB, RB, DM, Striker are starting positions that need to be a priority. Players currently holding those starting spots should be depth players. In my opinion they would be lucky to make the 18 on real MLS Cup contenders. They have way too many issues with basic mechanics. In order to make Union a success it must be made worthy of this top sports market and fan base. The other sports teams are struggling but they have a fan base steeped in history with success and failure, but the fans are willing to wait for them to return to competence and prominence. The same can not be said about the Union,,,Yet. This fan base wants an MLS franchise that competes from ownership to players on the field. We don’t want a franchise that is all about being mediocre and worse has a reputation of being cheap. To me the jury is still out on Curtin. To me when things are on the line I think he is extremely weak an overwhelmed. I’m am pulling for Petke to take over. This is all my opinion. However, I do think that all anyone has to do is look at the abysmal performance and track record of the front office, coaching and the on field product. This fan base deserves better. Removing Sakiewicz was definitely a start.

  9. This was a good read from Kinkead:

    Related to the roster:
    CBS Philly: You’ve got four guys out on loan (Zac MacMath, Leo Fernandes, Danny Cruz, Austin Berry). Some have expiring contracts. Some don’t. Also the contracts of Cristian Maidana and Vince Nogueira, anything you can tell us regarding those guys?
    Curtin: This is a big offseason. It’s one where we’ll have to make some hard decisions. There’s a lot of money that will be opening off the books, so we’ll be able to add some quality pieces. I’d say we need at least two more Tranquillo Barnetta types (of players) to put ourselves in a position where we can call ourselves a playoff contender. Right now, we fell a little bit short of that. Those are the kinds of players that we need to add. There have been some good performances from players, but still, at the end of the day, when you look up, we’re not in the playoffs. There’s going to be changes. I don’t think we have to do a complete overhaul and clean house, but there are going to be some tricky choices that need to be made, and we’ll make those decisions in a way that best suits this team longterm, not just for next season.

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