Daily news roundups

“It’s a blow”: Nogs departs, Union prepare for NYCFC, US advances to Copa semis, more

Photo: Paul Rudderow

Philadelphia Union

Jim Curtin’s weekly press conference was scheduled to begin at 12:30 pm on Thursday. Soon, however, came word that the start of the press conference would be delayed for some team news. As the delay stretched on, much mirth was on display on Twitter. Finally, after some 75 minutes, the press conference began (full transcript here at PSP) with Jim Curtin apologizing for the delay before adding, “Fortunately for you guys, the news at this time is that there is no news.”

Shortly after 5 pm, an official announcement was made by the club: The Union and Vincent Nogueira had mutually parted ways, with Nogueira returning to France “due to health reasons.”

Earnie Stewart provided some insight into the midfielder’s departure in an article by Dave Zeitlin at MLSsoccer.com:

We had some long conversations yesterday after the game — well actually, a week ago already. But he let us know yesterday that it came to a point where he couldn’t cope with it anymore and we had to take action…

This is something he’s dealt with before. He definitely will play soccer. That’s not so much the problem. It’s not in that area…He actually felt very guilty because he’s happy with the team and the way things were going. He had a great time in Philadelphia. It was hard for him. The same goes for the team and the staff that worked with him. We’ve gotten to know him as a very good soccer player and a good individual. So for the whole organization, it’s a blow. You never wish that for anyone you know.

Asked how the team would replace Nogueira, Stewart pointed first to the team’s depth before acknowledging the team could look for a replacement in the summer transfer window: “This is very fresh. We didn’t expect this. We weren’t looking in this direction. We have enough depth so we can find a solution — that’s not going to be a problem. But we’re going to look further, yes.”

More on this sad, stunning news (I’m still having a hard time processing this) at PSP (report, commentary), Philadelphia Union, Philly.com, Press Of Atlantic CityCSN Philly, Union Tally, Philly Voice, Brotherly Game (report, commentary), Prost Amerika, Vavel, Section 215MLSsoccer.com (announcement, report), ESPN, and Goal.com.

So, yeah, the Union return to league play on Saturday when they face NYCFC at Yankee Stadium (1 pm: TCN, MLS Live, Direct Kick). Previews at PSPMLSsoccer.com, and MLSGB.

MLSsoccer.com on what NYCFC needs to do to start getting results.

The draw for the next round of the US Open Cup took place on Thursday and the Union will host New York Red Bulls on June 29. If they win, they will be on the road to face the winner of New York Cosmos-New England Revolution in the quarterfinals on July 20 (although if they face the Cosmos, it won’t be at Cosmos’ home stadium). More on the draw at Philadelphia Union, US Soccer, MLSsoccer.com, Philly.com, Brotherly Game, Big Apple SoccerOnce a Metro, Metro Soccer Nation, and SI. More on Wednesday night’s win at TheCup.us.

Vote Richie Marquez for the All-Star Game!

MLS Multiplex chooses Keegan Rosenberry as the best outside back in MLS.

Just the Phacts says the Union “have the elements of a championship team.”

Pivot Today notes the Union home game against Chicago on Wednesday will be the seventh annual Delaware County Night.

Bethlehem Steel FC

Bethlehem continues their stretch of road games tonight at 7 pm against Wilmington Hammerheads (PSP, Bethlehem Steel (print, video), Unauthorized Bethlehem Steel FC BlogBrotherly Game, USLsoccer.com, and Wilmington Hammerheads.

City Islanders

Harrisburg is on the road on Saturday to South Carolina to face Charleston Battery (7:30 pm, YouTube).

PDL

All three area PDL teams are coming off of losses heading into this weekend’s games.

Second in the Mid Atlantic Division Reading United (13 points, 4-1-1) hosts fourth place Jersey Express (9 points, 3-3-0) on Saturday at 7 pm.

Fifth in the Mid Atlantic Division Ocean City Nor’easters (9 points, 3-3-0) host sixth place Evergreen FC (8 points, 2-4-2) on Saturday at 7 pm. Preview at Ocean City Nor’easters.

Last place Lehigh Valley United Sonic (4 points, 1-5-1) hosts fourth Jersey Express on Sunday at 7 pm.

MLS

Orlando City is dedicating Saturday’s game against San Jose to the 49 victims of Sunday’s mass shooting. The game will also be halted at the 49th minute for 30 seconds of silence.

Orlando City also announced that a commemorative section of Saturday’s match will be blocked out and dedicated to each victim and that they will be the title sponsor for Orlando Pride Week this October.

The club will also honor the victims with a permanent commemorative memorial at their new stadium, which is scheduled to open in 2017. The memorial will be placed in Section 12 at the new stadium, where the club will install rainbow seats for each of the victims.

At MLSsoccer.com, five storylines to watch as league play resumes this weekend.

Columbus Crew has announced Federico Higuain will be out five to seven weeks after successfully undergoing surgery for a sports hernia. Midfielder Mohammed Saeid will also be out with a fractured vertebra suffered in the loss to the Union on June 1.

Vice Sports on MLS’ 2022 problem.

The Copa America is fanning MLS aspirations in Arizona.

US

On to the semis!

The US topped Ecuador 2-1 on Thursday night in Seattle to advance to the Copa America semifinals.

Clint Dempsey said after the game, “We’re going to give it everything we can. We’re trying to get to the final. We’re going to try to win it. You don’t get a lot of opportunities in a major competition to go all the way. That’s what we’re going to try to do.”

Recaps and reports at PSP, US Soccer (recap, report), The Seattle Times (recap, report), The Oregonian, Los Angeles TimesWashington Post, New York Times, Wall Street JournalNew York Post, New York Daily News, USA TodayThe Guardian, ESPN (recap, report, report, analysiscommentary, player ratings), Fox Soccer (report, analysis), SI (report, analysis), MLSsoccer.com (recap, report, analysis, player ratings), ASN (recap, analysis, player ratings), Soccer America (report, analysisplayer ratings), Pro Soccer Talk (recapreport, analysis, player ratings), Goal.com (recap, report, player ratings), SBI (recap, analysis), Yahoo SportsPA Sport, and the AP.

Klinsmann said of his team’s opponent in the semifinals, which will be the winner of Saturday night’s Argentina-Venezuela quarterfinal game,

Well we’ll take it the way it kind of comes along. We don’t need to talk Argentina any bigger than they are. We had two years ago [Cristiano] Ronaldo coming to Manaus, [with Portugal]; big game too. We had them down there 2-1 until the 96th minute. So we’ll give everything we have with all the respect for the opponent. We’ll talk about the opponent the same as Colombia, Ecuador, and Paraguay because they’re all wonderful teams. But we’ve come so far now and we get even hungrier for the next now, even if we totally understand it’s a big one.

Now, what to do what with Jermaine Jones, Alejandro Bedoya, and Bobby Wood all suspended for the semifinal? Klinsmann said of Jones’ red card, and the yellow card accumulations of Bedoya and Wood,

Unfortunately we lost Jermaine for that incident which is an absolute joke, because I was right there and the fourth official made that decision, not the referee. The referee didn’t see it. He followed the advice of the fourth official out there and it’s a disgrace, a decision like that.

Obviously we’re going to miss Ale and we’re going to miss Bobby for the semifinal. Not easy, but I think it’s a team that has so much desire to grind it out.

At least the yellow cards John Brooks, Michael Bradley, Fabian Johnson, and Michael Orozco were carrying are now gone and DeAndre Yedlin will be back. So there’s that. More at Fox Soccer, Goal.com, Soccer America, and MLSsoccer.com.

Kudos to Michael Bradley for the rainbow flag captain’s armband.

Good on ya, Jordan Morris.

USA Today on how soccer’s popularity in the US grows with each US victory in the Copa America.

USA Panini bling!

Elsewhere

Check out the latest Footy on the Telly for listings of live soccer on TV, online, and on satellite radio for the upcoming week.

CONCACAF and CONMEBOL have issued a joint statement saying the confederations “take any chants or actions that are derogatory or offensive during our matches very seriously. This behavior does not reflect the true spirit of football and must be stopped.” Reuters notes, “Centenary Copa America officials say homophobic chanting at international matches ‘must stop’ but they have opted not to take action against offending teams.”

The “chants and actions” refers to the “puto” chant. ESPN reports, “Porto and Mexico midfielder Hector Herrera is concerned about the chant El Tri fans direct at opposition goalkeepers during goal kicks, but said Thursday he isn’t bothered by it.”

The New York Times reports, “More than 300 people have been arrested in France since the Euro 2016 soccer tournament began last week, and 24 are being deported after violent clashes between fans, the French authorities said Thursday. The violence has marred the start of the event and heightened security concerns in a country that is still under high alert for terrorist threats.”

Reuters reports, “The head of a Russian soccer supporters’ association, Alexander Shprygin, is among 20 Russian fans who will be expelled from France in the coming days after violence flared at their Euro 2016 match against England, a police source said on Thursday.”

ESPN reports,

A group of Russian hooligans has been arrested in the German city of Cologne after they attacked Spanish tourists, local police have said.

On Thursday evening, five Russian hooligans travelling back from the European Championship in France were taken into custody after plainclothes officers witnessed an “extremely aggressive and brutal” assault on three Spanish tourists, Cologne police said in a media release. A sixth person, who managed to escape at the time, was also later apprehended.

The BBC reports, “A male referee has been banned from all football-related activities until 2019 after posing as female officials on a dating app. Connor Mayes set up fake accounts on Tinder, pretending to be Women’s FA Cup final officials Lucy Oliver, Amy Robinson and Paula Wyatt.”

15 Comments

  1. Obviously this is a huge blow for the team, but first and foremost I hope that Vince is OK. Reading between the lines of what Earnie was saying, it sounds like he is dealing with depression or another mental health issue, something that is still all too rarely discussed or addressed in pro sports. Obviously that’s just speculation at this point, but regardless, he deserves all of our support, and also our gratitude for what he brought to the team as arguably the best player the Union ever had.

    • Well said. Thanks for your time with the Union Vince!

    • Béla Guttmann of Love says:

      Well said and with many fond memories of his play in mind, may he find well-being first and foremost. He had elegance and helped bring the U to a new level. Vincent should know this fan has nothing but appreciation for all he has given. Knowing what a sense of guilt can do when you aren’t feeling at your best, I hope the organization has communicated to him that he should feel no guilt–personal well-being is essential and should be paramount in life, let alone sports.

    • My immediate instinct was the same… he hasn’t looked the same for a while..observing from afar.

      • Man that rocket of a half volley goal, a few years back at home, is still picking up speed. Best goal from the run of play in Union history. Wish you the best Nogs… you will be missed.

  2. Andy Muenz says:

    I was thinking about how much different this seems from the last time a player of Nogueira’s impact suddenly departed (and yes it has happened before). That was Mondragon’s sudden departure in 2012 which we later learned was the start of the Peter Novak’s unraveling.
    .
    I don’t think this is the start of the same thing with Curtin or Stewart.

  3. Andy Muenz says:

    One correction on the Argentina-Venezuela semifinal. It’s tomorrow night. The Peru-Colombia game is tonight. That means the US has 2 extra days of rest over their next opponent.

  4. I wish for the absolute best for Vincent and his family. He has been a savior for this team and has single handily made this team what it is today. He will truly be missed.

  5. The “chants and actions” refers to the “puto” chant. ESPN reports, “Porto and Mexico midfielder Hector Herrera is concerned about the chant El Tri fans direct at opposition goalkeepers during goal kicks, but said Thursday he isn’t bothered by it.”
    .
    So, I guess I need some help. Google Translate tells me “puto” translates from Spanish to English as “fucking.” I can see how that could be labelled “offensive” (obviously), but how is it derogatory and/or homophobic? My guess is Google is… *gasp* wrong. So… what’s the chant mean?

    • Dan C (formerly of 103) says:

      You have to remember that Spanish words can mean very different things depending on the country that they are spoken in. The word would loosely translate to the English (as in England) word for a cigarette.

      Stay classy El Tri!

    • It’s actual meaning is slang for a different, homophobic F word.

    • Béla Guttmann of Love says:

      Without starting a reddit-esque deep dive into the sociolinguistics of it all, Dan C is on the money. As I understand it as a non-Mexican layperson, puto is a homophobic slur generated by a stridently patriarchal culture where the performance of masculinity can be everything for males.

      In the context of a soccer match, the chant is intended to call the target’s masculinity into question and thereby make mockery of him for being less than a “Man” and therefore unsuitable for athletic endeavor.

      At best it’s as sexist as yelling “bitch” which is still inexcusable. At worst,… well I’m prone to miserabilia and could wax polemic all weekend, so i’ll leave you to explore that abyss if you so choose.

    • John Ling says:

      Thanks, all.

    • It means B**CH! Check the urban slang dictionary! I’ve had an angry Mexican on the pitch tell me in Spanglish…”I’ll make you my puto” Lol! Ahh talking guff on the pitch………..miss that stuff!

      • I played with a few Spaniards in college and they would always yell “puta madre” when they were pissed at someone or themselves……slightly different meaning, still pretty derogatory………and, at least on the pitch, funny!

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