Daily news roundups

Union bits, Ocean City host PDL semis on Saturday, more

Photo: Earl Gardner

Philadelphia Union

The Union were off on Monday and are off today before returning to training on Wednesday to prepare for Sunday’s home game against Salt Lake.

In the meanwhile, Andre Blake and Keegan Rosenberry are in San Jose preparing for Thursday’s All-Star Game against Arsenal, who announced their roster for the game on Monday.

At ESPN, a post looking at possible ways to change the All-Star Game format considers what a side made up of American MLS players versus a side of foreign MLS players might look like. Rosenberry and Chris Pontius make the All-US Best XI, Blake the World XI.

In the midseason awards at the Seattle Times, Blake is named Goalkeeper of the Year. Blake makes a highlight reel at MLSsoccer.com of the best saves of the season so far.

Rosenberry remains at the top of MLSsoccer.com’s Rookie Rankings: “Keegan Rosenberry hangs onto the top spot despite being part of a Philadelphia Union team that lost 5-1 in Montreal. It was by far Philly’s worst loss of the season, but Rosenberry’s entire body of work this year helps him remain No. 1.”

In the latest Inside Doop at CSN Philly, Dave Zeitlin notes Maurice Edu has returned to training with the club and wonders, “Could we see him get on the field, perhaps off the bench, in Sunday’s game?” Zeitlin acknowledges fitness is a concern but “there’s no question his return would give the team a big boost at a time when such a thing is needed.”

Power rankings! At SI, the Union drop one spot to No. 8: “Are the wheels coming off the Union bandwagon? Jim Curtin’s side enjoyed a strong start to the season and a nice lead in the East, but a 5-1 loss to Montreal is just the latest in a bad run for Philly (which was also dumped from the U.S. Open Cup on PKs mid-week). If it’s just a bad run of form, they’ll be hoping to snap out of it soon.” At ESPN, the Union plummet five spots to No. 12: “After humbling defeat in Montreal, the danger now is that things could spiral out of control for the Union. Maybe Jim Curtin has the right idea when he says they’ll tear up the tape and move on.”

At American Soccer Analysis, Jared Young debuts a new “Expected Pass Completion Model.” A Union player does not appear until quite deep in the rankings and that player is now a former Union player, Vincent Nogueira. The next five highest Union players in descending order are Roland Alberg, Josh Yaro, Warren Creavalle, Chris Pontius, and Ilsinho.

At Brotherly Game, Jared Young is concerned Earnie Stewart’s vision of a Union team playing in a style that reflects what Philadelphia is “about” may not be a good idea.

At Section 215, Chuck Booth says the Union’s recent string of poor performances means the team needs a “shakeup” and hopes players arrive in the transfer window to make that happen.

At Brotherly Game, Matt Ralph notes, “Former Union Academy teammates John Schroeder, Zach Perez, and Mo Conde will be playing for a U19 national title this week in Frisco, Texas, with the Palm Beach, Florida-based club FC Florida.” The trio were teammates on the 2014-15 Union Academy U-18 team.

Remember James McFadden? He’s been appointed assistant manager of Scottish Premier League side Motherwell.

Bethlehem Steel FC

Brotherly Game has a recap from Sunday’s 1-1 home draw with Rochester Rhinos.

City Islanders

Barril trialed with the Union in 2014 before signing with Harrisburg.


Ocean City Nor’easters, who defeated Reading United 4-1 on Sunday in the PDL Eastern Conference championship game, will host the Western Conference champions Calgary Foothills FC in the semifinals of the PDL national championship on Saturday. Kickoff at the Tennessee Avenue Soccer Complex is at 5 pm. Central Conference champions Michigan Bucks will host the Southern Conference champions Midland/Odessa Sockers at 7:30 pm on Saturday. The league championship game will be played on August 6, location and time to be determined.

More on Sunday’s victory over Reading at Ocean City Patch.


The Guardian looks at William Cox, the owner of the Philadelphia Phillies in 1943 (before he was banned for betting on the team) and his role in the modern professional game in the US through the creation of the International Soccer League (1960-65), “a 10-team round-robin summer competition that included mostly foreign sides. The ISL begat the National Professional Soccer League, which merged with the United Soccer Association into the [original] North American Soccer League.”


League commissioner Don Garber will be holding a Q&A on the MLS Facebook page today beginning at 11:30 am.

Portland defender Nat Borchers is out for the rest of the season after suffering a ruptured left Achilles tendon.

Reports of an expected move by FC Dallas attacker Fabian Castillo to Turkish side have been circulating for a few days. SI reports:

The deal could be finalized on Tuesday and is not a straightforward transfer, SI.com understands. Trabzonspor will pay around $2 million to secure Castillo’s services for the next six months. It then must pay another $2 million before or during January 2017 to seal a permanent move. If that second check isn’t written, Castillo’s rights would remain with Dallas. The transaction is a transfer at heart–that’s the intention and understanding on both sides–but in practice it’s a loan until the entire fee is paid.

FCD will keep two-thirds of the transfer fee, according to MLS rules. The rest goes into the league’s account.

Goal.com reported on Sunday that Olympiakos has made a $3 million offer for Dom Dwyer. Sporting Kansas City head coach Peter Vermes tells the Kansas City Star the offer has been rejected: “There’s a lot of different moving parts in these deals — both for the club and the player. Everybody has to be comfortable with that. I would say right now, we’re not (comfortable) — neither of us are. So it’s simple: Based on what the structure and situation is, we’re not considering it at the moment…When a transfer or deal is offered on a player, we’re always going to consider it in conjunction with the player. I’ve always maintained that with all the players at the club, so there’s nothing different with Dom. So did we listen? Sure. But it doesn’t mean we’re going to act on it.”

Soccer America notes, “At the All-Star break, MLS clubs are averaging 21,429 fans a game, almost unchanged (down 0.6 percent) from last year’s record average attendance of 21,574.”

Washington Business Journal reports, “D.C. United has awarded a $150 million contract to Turner Construction Co. to build its Buzzard Point soccer stadium, an important step toward the Major League Soccer team’s goal of starting the 2018 season in the Capitol Riverfront.”

NASL-side Tampa Bay Rowdies believe their poor record is largely the result of poor officiating and have released a highlight reel of bad calls from the 2016 season to make their case.


At US Soccer, a post highlighting players on the US women’s Olympic squad who will be making their Olympic debuts.

SI talks to one of those rookies, Crystal Dunn, about going from missing the cut for the 2015 US Women’s World Cup team to being expected to play a major role in the 2016 US Olympic team.


  1. Interesting piece on the All-Star format. The stating XIs for the World vs American team shows why that’s no the answer – world team crushes US team. If there’s no chance the league would just fold the competition all together, an East vs West competition probably makes the most sense. At east it gets more MLS players in the match.

  2. Last year, when Garber named Lampard and Gerrard to the team despite the fact that they had barely started playing in MLS, I swore off the All-Star game for good. I think the concept has gotten ridiculous. And in a sport that plays this many matches, which already get interrupted for international breaks, friendlies, and the US Open Cup, the last thing needed is one more match intrusion.

    Having said that, I will probably break my pledge and watch the first half so I can see Andre and Keegan against international competition.

    • I’m not against All Star Games. Think of it like you were 8 years old. An exhibition seeing all of your favorite players together on the field at the same time.
      It is a trifle but a harmless one.

      • It’s like what my friends and I use to do with our favorite musicians – put them into all sorts of supergroup combinations and imagine what they’d sound like

    • We don’t know yet if they are starting . . .
      Kinnear gets to make the final decision, which is just another reason to hate the whole fiasco. His goalkeeper is the other one on the roster and it’s being played in his stadium. So my gut feeling tells me Bingham is going to get the start in net. Rosenberry should be lock to start at RB though.
      So may only see Blake against the Arsenal backups

    • Jim Presti says:

      The best part about the MLS All Star match is that if a player refuses to play in the match, the are suspended for the next league match. Bush league by MLS… again.

      • OneManWolfpack says:

        Wow. That is the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard. And MLS has said/done some AMAZINGLY dumb things.

  3. Andy Muenz says:

    All star games are stupid in soccer. We already have them, they are called national team games. The US played 6 of them last month across the country.

    • el Pachyderm says:

      The more MLS blinds with gimmick the further from authentic we are.
      Here’s my version of an all star game. Build a proper pyramid. Have a real Champions League.

      • Jim Presti says:

        But that means SUM may lose their expected cash flow. Denied.

      • el Pachyderm says:

        Trying to stick a world game as big as a watermelon into the corner pocket of a pool table.
        Truly niche unique and misguided.
        But I’m the elitist.
        I’d rather watch Wynalda Coby Jones Lalas and a bunch of other old timers smattered with Dempsey and Howard and half a dozen other players play in a game against each other. Think Zidane and friends.

    • i’ll counter this with recognizing the players in the league, rather than for their countries. some of these guys will only get the acclaim in this league, never get on their national team and never make the playoffs.

      also, if anyone is a hockey fan, i dig what the NHL did to their format last season. three games of 10-minute halves each, with four All-Star teams (based on the league’s four divisions). something could be done in the Extra Time sense of 30 mins (two 15s) games.

      now, supporting my counterpoint, what they did to John Scott initially was BS, but he was celebrated at the game and it made for a great night. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Scott_(ice_hockey)

  4. OneManWolfpack says:

    AS someone pointed out yesterday in the comments of a post – the radio silence on potential transfers is beginning to get quite stressful.
    Anyone at PSP, or anywhere else, have ANYTHING AT ALL?!?

  5. Genuinely, I wonder whether Mark Geiger just wants to go home. Not calling a single thing for the Union. 18,271 paid attendance tonight.

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