Daily news roundups

Union survive, US faces Ecuador in Copa quarterfinals tonight, more

Photo: Paul Rudderow

Philadelphia Union

Brian Carroll said after Wednesday night’s 3-2 win over Harrisburg City Islanders, “I guess it wouldn’t be the Open Cup if the crazy didn’t occur.”

It seems so.

While that old “they’re going to poop the bed” feeling has thankfully been receding when it comes to the Union and league play, in Wednesday night’s US Open Cup fourth round game the Union conceded goals in the 79th and 91st minutes to allow City Islanders to draw level. But unwelcome visions of another 30 minutes of play and penalty kicks were soon replaced by jubilation in the minds of Union fans thanks to Roland Alberg spectacular free kick winner in the 93rd minute. It was Alberg’s second stoppage time goal of the night, his first coming in the 46th minute, with Walter Restrepo’s scoring the opening goal in the 3rd minute.

Jim Curtin said after the game, “After a fairly business-like 75, 80 minutes we unraveled a bit and lost a little composure…Disappointed that we didn’t close it out and get the third goal. Again, you let teams hang around, this competition is a crazy one…The name of the game is surviving and advancing in this competition; we’ve done that. We’ve had a good mentality, happy to close it out and not have to go 120 minutes with New York City coming up on Saturday. Our focus will shift to them now. This game is in the past and we will learn from it and we’ll get better.”

The next round of play in the US Open Cup, the Round of 16, is scheduled to take place on June 29. You can follow the draw for the next round at @OpenCup beginning at noon today. UPDATE: The Union will host NYRB on June 29 in the Round of 16. If the win, they are on the road to face the winner of New England Revolution-New York Cosmos in the quarterfinals on July 20. The official tournament Twitter account first erroneously tweeted that the Union were on the road to face NYRB because, like Brian Carroll says, “I guess it wouldn’t be the Open Cup if the crazy didn’t occur.”

Recaps and reports at PSP (recap, postgame video and quotes), Philadelphia Union (recap, report), Philly.com, Delco Times, CSN Philly, Philly Voice, Philly Soccer News (recap, report), Brotherly Game, Pattison Ave, SBI (recap, report), Prost AmerikaVavel, US Soccer, MLSsoccer.com (recap, report), USLsoccer.com, and Match ForecasterUSA Today has a photo gallery.

The Georgetown Athletics website says vote Keegan Rosenberry for the MLS All-Star team.

Section 215 reviews the Union’s candidates for the All-Star team.

Bethlehem Steel

At USLsoccer.com, a preview of Bethlehem’s road game on Friday nightagainst Wilmington Hammerheads.

PDL

It was a losing night for area PDL teams on Wednesday. Reading United lost 1-0 on the road to NYRB U-23s, their first loss of the 2016 season, and Lehigh Valley United Sonic lost 4-0 at home to Baltimore Bohemians. With the night’s results, Baltimore (14 points, 4-2-2) moves ahead of Reading (13 points, 4-1-1) into first place in the Mid Atlantic Division.

Before Wednesday night’s game, Reading’s Paul Marie was named to the PDL Team of the Week after scoring two goals in last week’s 3-2 road win over Baltimore Bohemians, the second time this season he has been so honored.

Local

At Philly.com, Erin McCarthy on how the Copa America games at the Linc lived up to their billing.

Lititz Record Express, Andrew Wenger’s hometown newspaper, on how he’s doing with Houston Dynamo.

MLS

Ten out of 12 MLS teams advanced to the fifth round of the US Open Cup from their games on Wednesday. Joining San Jose Earthquakes, who were defeated by Portland Timbers on Tuesday, DC United was defeated by NASL-side Fort Lauderdale Strikers on penalty kicks after 120 scoreless minutes, and NYCFC was defeated 1-0 by NASL-side New York Cosmos by a goal in the 88th minute. Roundups of Wednesday night’s US Open Cup games at US Soccer and MLssoccer.com.

At MLSsoccer.com, Kansas City head coach Peter Vermes on why no MLS team has won the treble.

US

Jurgen Klinsmann said, “We’re hungry. We want to prove ourselves against the top nations in South America, and we are doing great so far, but this is a big-time game. This is a knockout game. Knockout games in big soccer tournaments like a World Cup, like a Copa America, are nerve-racking games. It’s down to your belief, your willingness to suffer and go through pain. This is what the players will go through Thursday night. But if the fans are with them, we’re going to make it…Ecuador is top 15 in the world. This is a big team. It’s going to be a nail-biter. It’s going to be a 50-50 situation. They want to go into the semis, we want to go into the semis.”

At ESPN, former Union head coach John Hackworth, an assistant when Michael Orozco was with the Union, talks about why the defender, who is expected to start tonight in place of the suspended DeAndre Yedlin, has been valuable to the USMNT:

I think one of the reasons coaches have used Orozco in different spots is he’s a confident person. He believes in himself, and if he’s asked to do anything, there’s never a hesitation on Michael’s part. And that’s a really good quality, a belief in yourself, especially at that level. Sometimes that’s the difference-maker between a player getting an opportunity or not.

It’s nice to know that when you call upon a player to play a role, that they’re always willing to do that, and more importantly, be confident enough to undertake that opportunity with full conviction.

More on Orozco at Soccer America and MLSsoccer.com. Fox Soccer on how Yedlin’s suspension couldn’t come at a worse time.

ESPN reports, “Ecuador manager Gustavo Quinteros said that his team will be without forward Miller Bolanos for its Copa America Centenario quarterfinal against the United States, and that Jaime Ayovi would be a game time decision.”

The Washington Post, The Guardian, MLSsoccer.com, Goal.com, and Yahoo Sports on why the US will benefit from that much more of a home field advantage by facing Ecuador in Seattle.

From Yahoo Sports: “[A]t this Copa America Centenario, Klinsmann has invented a new act – one in which he plays a sensible, consistent and measured manager.” ESPN wonders if the US will be able to show what it has learned from its World Cup exit.

Previews of tonight’s game at  PSP, US Soccer, MLSsoccer.com (preview, tactical preview), ESPN, SI (USA, Ecuador), Soccer AmericaASN, Goal.com, Pro Soccer Talk, and Metro,

John Brooks and Clint Dempsey make ESPN’s Best XI for the Copa America group stage.

The headline at The 91st Minute: “American soccer is too cautious; stop worrying about Christian Pulisic.” Pulisic!

US Soccer has released a video in support of the victims of the terror attack in Orlando:

Elsewhere

The Guardian reports, “The head of the official Russian supporters group, who was revealed this week to have far-right affiliations and be travelling with the official delegation, is among 20 fans being deported from Euro 2016 by the French authorities.” The AP reports, “French authorities will deport 20 Russian men next week for their role in the violence that has marred the first week of the European Championship.” Reuters reports, “Four Russian soccer fans will be deported from France after being detained in the northern France city of Lille ahead of the Euro 2016 match between Russia and Slovakia, local authorities said on Wednesday.”

The AP reports,

The Russian soccer hooligans who have fought with rival supporters at the European Championship in France have at various times been both an asset and a liability to the Russian authorities.

While the often-nationalist hardcore fans provide a reserve of support for adventurous foreign policy moves and a bulwark against domestic protests, they can also threaten public order at home and embarrass Russia abroad as it seeks global prestige by hosting the 2018 World Cup.

Reuters also reported, “Soccer rivalry and fan violence spilled into global politics as Moscow summoned the French ambassador over detentions of Russians at Euro 2016 and warned an ‘anti-Russian’ mood could even damage relations between Russia and France.”

The Daily Beast on how while there may be official support in Russia for hooligans but popular support is absent.

The AP reports, “French police used tear gas to disperse rampaging English soccer fans at the European Championship on Wednesday, the fourth time England fans have been involved in violent incidents since the start of the tournament.” PA Sport reports, “French police have arrested 36 people and 16 were treated for injuries in hospital after violence erupted in the streets of Lille on Wednesday night ahead of Thursday’s Euro 2016 match between England and Wales in nearby Lens.” More at Reuters.

Also from Reuters: “UEFA said on Thursday it regretted the unrest on the streets of Lille overnight on the eve of the Euro 2016 soccer match between England and Wales, but it stopped short of taking any action to punish fan violence.”

Vice Sports reports on “72 hours amid the mayhem in Marseille.”

Reuters reports, “Nigerian gay rights activists have condemned a senior soccer official after he said sponsors were reluctant to back women’s soccer in the country because of a misconception that female footballers are “synonymous with lesbianism. Seyi Akinwunmi, the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) vice-president, blamed lesbians last weekend for the recent decline of the national women’s team, according to Nigerian media.”

At Deadspin, Bobby Warshaw, who scored the equalizer for the City Islanders against the Union on Wednesday night, writes about the how no one understands the rules of soccer and why that is a problem.

6 Comments

  1. Andy Muenz says:

    Union host the Pink Cows next round of the open cup. If they win, they play the quarterfinals on the road at either New England or NY Cosmos.

    • The Energy Drinks are going to be the toughest opponent between the U and the Open Cup this year. The Union’s best advantage might be its midfield depth. But that match to be a real contest.
      .
      I almost expect the U to lose on Saturday to NYCFC based alone on it being hard to believe that team can lose any more games at home. They’ve been so breathtakingly impotent as a football club. Amazing.

      • Andy Muenz says:

        I would also rank whoever comes out of the west as a potentially difficult opponent, especially if the Union have to go on the road for a midweek game to somewhere like Colorado or Utah.

  2. ebradlee10 says:

    Great free kick from Alberg. Often times you’ll see someone in the same position take 3 or 4 steps to the ball and they rarely score or put it on frame. The two steps is just enough.

  3. OneManWolfpack says:

    Oh man… Russia 2018 is gonna be a god damn shit show.
    .
    Hope that free kick launches Alberg off the bench a little sooner than the 85th minute. Happy for him. It was a thing beauty.
    .
    Kind of agree that NYRB Open Cup game, will be the most difficult game. Wouldn’t be surprised it it were treated like a league game. Definitely the toughest game, other than the Final (wink wink 🙂

  4. Regarding American Soccer being too cautious in 91st minute article…. I agree wholeheartedly. Mexico started a 20 year old in last group game then subbed on a 20 year old for first sub…As Sir Alex says, if you’re good enough to play—PLAY.

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