Daily news roundups

Alberg! Union top Fire, Academy teams getting results at USSDA playoffs, US to face Colombia, more

Photo: Paul Rudderow

Philadelphia Union

Roland Alberg is on fire. And thank goodness for that.

Alberg scored a hat trick in the Union’s unnecessarily close 4-3 win over Chicago on Wednesday night, the first in club history since Sebatien Le Toux’s in the inaugural home opener win over DC United at the Linc way back in 2010. And if the boxscore gods were more generous, the first Union goal against the Fire would be Alberg’s too.

Alberg said after the game, “The feeling is incredible. I’ve never scored a hat trick in my life. This is the first time for me. I’m happy and I want to enjoy tonight.” Alberg has now scored six goals in three games, beginning with last week’s US Open Cup game, including two from the penalty spot.

Chris Pontius said of Alberg taking the penalty kick last night to complete the hat trick, “Let him have it there. He was feeling it. I believe they took the first one away, so that’s for a hat-trick, right? There’s no arguing. That’s his.” Indeed.

With the win, the Union tied the franchise record of ten consecutive unbeaten home games, outscoring opponents 21 goals to 9 over the streak. More importantly, the Union bounced back from last weekend’s disappointing loss at NYCFC, increasing their first place lead in the Eastern Conference to four points.

Now, if they can only get the suddenly leaky defense sorted in time for Saturday’s visit from Vancouver Whitecaps.

Recaps and reports at PSP (recap, postgame), Philadelphia Union (recap, report), Philly.com (recap, report), Delco Times, CSN Philly, Philly VoicePhilly Soccer News, Brotherly Game (recap, analysis), Pattison AveProst AmerikaVavel, Section 215Philly Sports Live, Playing for 90, MLssoccer.com (recap, Union, Fire), Chicago Fire, CSN Chicago, Chicago Fire Confidential, Chicagoland Soccer News (recap, report), Hot Time in Old TownPro Soccer TalkGoal.com, SBI, and the APDelco News Network and USA Today have photo galleries from the game).

At Philly Voice, Kevin Kinkead on how the absence of CJ Sapong affects the Union.

At MLSsoccer.com, Keegan Rosenberry is at the top of the Rookie Rankings: “If your team is leading its conference, and you’ve played a major part in that, then you get to claim No. 1. Good luck fending off the JoMo Express.”

The Union has honored the memory of longtime Philly soccer journalist Frank Bertucci with a plaque in his memory in the press room at Talen Energy Stadium. Philly.com and Philly Soccer News have stories on Bertucci, who passed away in May, 2015.

Philadelphia Union Academy

A goal from Issa Rayyan gave the Union U-16s a 1-0 lead in the 14th minute against RSL-AZ in their opening game in the US Soccer Development Academy playoffs in Frisco, Texas, but RSL would equalize in the 62nd minute and the game game finished as a 11 draw. Next up for the team is Miami’s Kendall SC on Friday at 5 pm.

The Union U-18s began their USSDA playoff run on Wednesday with a 2-0 win over Beachside SC of Connecticut. Byron Josue Monge opened the scoring in the 21st minute, with Joseph DeZart adding another goal in the 33rd minute. Next up is Chicago Fire U-18s on Friday at 7:30 pm.

The U-14s, 1-1-0 in the USSDA Showcase, face Portland Timbers U-14s today at 4 pm.


First place in the Mid-Atlantic Division Reading United lost 1-0 at home to Lehigh Valley United on Wednesday night, Lochlan McLean scoring the lone goal in the 25th minute. With the result, Lehigh Valley United moves from the bottom of the seven-team division table for the first time this season and into sixth place. Recaps at Reading Eagle and Philly Soccer News.

Reading (16 points, 5-2-1) hosts second place Ocean City Nor’easters (15 points, 5-3-0) on Saturday at 7 pm. Lehigh Valley United (10 points, 3-5-1) is on the road to face fourth place Jersey Express (12 points, 4-5-0) on Sunday night at 7 pm.


At Backpage Football, Sean Maslin writes about visiting Philadelphia to take in Copa America games at the Linc, and the Union’s US Open Cup game at Talen Energy Stadium. Along the way, he makes some interesting observations about the difficulty the Union have attracting support in a city that has many soccer fans: “Philadelphia, much like many cities here in the United States, has a passion for the game of football and an appreciation for it that is without question. But its identity is fractured by old divisions between those that love the domestic game and those that espouse the joy of the greats who play abroad.”


The Union’s 4-3 win over last in the Eastern Conference Chicago (11 points, 2-7-5) saw them increase their point total to 26 with a 7-4-5 record, four points ahead of second place NYRB (22 points, 7-8-1), who gave up an early lead on the road to RSL and lost 2-1 on Wednesday night. The win saw third in the Western Conference Salt Lake (27 points, 8-4-3) increase their lead over fourth place LAG (22 points, 5-3-7) to five points. Los Angeles missed an opportunity to narrow the gap on Wednesday night, drawing 0-0 at home with first place Colorado (32 points, 9-2-5).

The Galaxy announced on Wednesday it had signed Jack McBean from LA Galaxy II as a Homegrown Player. McBean originally signed with the Galaxy in 2011 as a Homegrown Player before joining LA Galaxy II in 2015.

Orlando City is auctioning off the game-worn jerseys from last Saturday’s home draw against San Jose in support of the OneOrlando fund, “which is providing financial support to the victims of the Pulse tragedy and their families.”

MLS Commissioner: Miami MLS stadium has new investor

Boston.com follows up on the Boston Globe report we linked to yesterday on a possible new stadium site for New England Revolution with a look at five locations the Krafts have looked at before. Curbed Boston looks at what the new proposed stadium location has going for it. More at Boston Globe and The Sun Chronicle.


Portland Thorns defeated Chicago Red Stars 2-0 on Wednesday night, moving past now second place Chicago into first place.


The US will have a rematch against Colombia, the team that defeated them in the opening game of group play, in Saturday’s Copa America Centenario Third Place Game in Arizona (8 pm, FX) after Colombia was defeated 2-0 Wednesday night’s semifinal by Chile. The Chile-Colombia game was delayed by more than two hours due to heavy rain.

At ESPN, Jeff Carlisle assesses the USMNT’s progress under Klinsmann.

At Fox Soccer, Ryan Rosenblatt wonders where the USMNT’s fight and physicality went in the semifinal against Argentina.

At MLSsoccer.com, Matthew Doyle wonders where the USMNT goes from here.

The headline at Sporting News, “Asking why the U.S. isn’t better at soccer is a really dumb question”.

Soccer America and The AP on the good TV ratings for the USA-Argentina game.

Bloomberg reports, “Univision has sold $135 million in advertising for the Copa America Centenario, almost double the $70 million it paid to broadcast the international tournament.” Juan Carlos Rodriguez, president of Univision Deportes, said, “When the first game started, I cried like a baby. I thought it was never going to happen. It took too many meetings, too many flights and too many lawyers. But the great thing is everything got aligned.”


One can only hope Arnor Traustason’s voice recovers in time for the game against England on Monday:


Goal.com has video of Traustason losing his mind in the press box.

Ireland fans. Best ever? They’re certainly doing things right.

Meanwhile, two Russian hooligans talk to Goal.com about their “strict moral code.” More hooligan news at The Guardian.

This: “A Swedish footballer has hit out after being sent off for breaking wind during a match – with the referee accusing him of ‘deliberate provocation’ and ‘unsportsmanlike behavior'”:

“I had a bad stomach, so I simply let go,” the 25-year-old [Adam Lindin Ljungkvist] told Länstidningen Södertälje. “Then I received two yellow cards and then red. Yes, I was shocked, it’s the strangest thing I have ever experienced in football.

“I asked the referee, ‘What, am I not allowed to break wind a little?’ ‘No,’ he replied … I don’t get it but maybe he thought I farted in my hand and threw the fart at him. But I did not.”


  1. I’m going to spend the weekend trying to learn how to catch farts with my hand and throw them

    • Kako said he had experienced similar incidents before. “Once there was a player who stood and peed next to the pitch. I showed him a yellow card, too.”

  2. Simply Let Go is my new mantra

  3. Sean Doyle says:


    Ha-ha, great moment though.

    • Andy Muenz says:

      While a great moment for the country to win a game in the tournament rather than going into the KO’s with 3 ties, I was also a little disappointed. I was hoping to see Portugal in the same half of the bracket with England, Italy, Spain, Germany, and France.

      • OneManWolfpack says:

        Have to admit it’s cool that one half the Euro bracket is filled with the titans… and the other the minnows. Pretty cool.

  4. From the Backpage article (WELL SAID!):
    The lack of organisation between all parties leading up to this match was curious. Given that U.S. Soccer is the organizer of both the U.S. Open Cup and the Copa America it is strange that there were no signs at Lincoln Financial Field of the Union or the U.S. Open Cup.
    Although MLS has been accused of in the past not caring about the Open Cup, these accusations seem better pointed at U.S. Soccer.
    If this is the football association and it is responsible for promoting their own tournaments then it has failed at both the Copa and U.S. Open Cup. The lack of advertising in host cities for two major tournaments would not be tolerated in any other footballing country.

    • I thought that FIFA was the organizer of this Copa.

      The Union did have a tent in the Fan Zone outside of the stadium

  5. By the way, a very happy birthday to Coach Curtin!

  6. The Iceland call is one of the greatest things I have ever heard…. unbridled joy.

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