Daily news roundups

Picault signed, Bedoya/Pontius vs Blake in USA-JAM friendly tonight, league news, more

Photo: Via Hamburger Abendblatt

Philadelphia Union

As expected, the Union has announced the signing of winger Fabrice “Fafa” Picault. PSP, Philadelphia Union (announcement, video, highlights), Philly.com, Delco Times, CSN Philly, Brotherly GamePhiladelphia Sports NationMLSsoccer.com, ESPN, and Goal.com.

At the Union website, Matt Bodiford notes Andre Blake will be facing off against Union teammates Alejandro Bedoya and Chris Pontius in tonight’s USA-Jamaica friendly (7:30 pm, FS1, Fox Soccer 2Go, UniMás, Univision Deportes, Univision Now). More at Philly Sports Network.

Section 215 says Haris Medunjanin is great but fans shouldn’t expect him to be Vincent Nogueira. More on Medunjanin at Philly Sports Network.

SBI on Oguchi Onyewu signing with the Union.

ASN projects Auston Trusty will make the US U-20 MNT roster for the CONCACAF U-20 World Cup qualification tournament.

At the Union website, a recap of Thursday’s training session in Clearwater.

Philly Sports Network reviews Jim Curtin’s comments at last week’s open practice on what preseason training in Florida will entail.

Former Union man Antoine Hoppenot has signed with USL side Reno 1868.

Bethlehem Steel FC

At the Steel website, a look at the opening of preseason training.

Section 215 on new Steel signing Santi Moar, who was initially selected by the Union in this year’s SuperDraft.


Atlanta have signed 23-year-old Venezuelan forward Josef Martínez “on loan as a Designated Player…The loan deal includes a club option to purchase.”

Portland have signed 28-year-old Argentinian winger Sebastián Blanco “as a Designated Player.” The announcement notes, “Portland acquired the Right of First Refusal to Blanco from Seattle Sounders FC in exchange for $75,000 of General Allocation Money.”

San Jose have announced to arrivals: Targeted Allocation Money has been used to acquire Dutch forward Danny Hoesen on a season-long loan “with an option to buy,” while German defender/midfielder Florian Jungwirth has been signed using Targeted Allocation Money.

San Jose also signed Albania international midfielder Jahmir Hyka “to a multi-year contract using Targeted Allocation Money.”

Toronto have re-signed Canadian international forward Tosaint Ricketts.

At Orlando Sentinel, Orlando head coach Jason Kreis says Young Designated Player Bryan Rochez, defender David Mateos, and midfielder Devron Garcia will not be returning to the team this season.

At ASN: “What are so many MLS teams signing Costa Ricans?”

At MLSsoccer.com, a full transcript of MLS president and deputy commissioner Mark Abbott’s teleconference with reporters earlier this week on the topic of expansion.

At FourFourTwo, a look at how attendance and marketing standards are being set by the league’s newest teams

At FiftyFiveOne, a good read on what happens with all those owners and cities looking to launch teams after MLS has completed expansion: “[W]hat will become of those clubs left on the outside? Rich owners have swept into some of these markets, promising stadiums and the highest level of soccer. Will they simply walk away from their clubs when they find themselves stuck in the USL? Will NASL become a haven for these disgruntled owners, leading to another era of seeking to challenge MLS to force a merger?”

The NASL has joined the USL in counting Canadian players as domestic players. More from The Canadian Press.

At FourFourTwo, how the new political climate in the US, as embodied most recently in the Trump travel ban, is affecting soccer in the US: “In MLS circles, last week’s hastily enacted and chaotically enforced travel ban may be the first of a series of policies whose consequences have to be worked out on the run. Union reps, agents, league officials and players are already sorting out the implications for players currently or potentially affected by this ban, as well as trying to anticipate scenarios future presidential orders might present.”


At the NWSL website, details on the league’s new three-year partnership with A + E Networks. More at New York TimesFourFourTwo, and Excelle Sports.


At ESPN, head coach Bruce Arena discusses some of the lineup changes we can expect for tonight’s game. Arena says, “We’ll have a different look in the midfield, with a number of different players.” Could Pontius get the start? Previews at US Soccer (preview, five things to know), Times Free Press, Jamaica Gleaner, MLSsoccer.comSISoccer America, Pro Soccer Talk, ans Stars and Stripes FC.

Fox Sports notes this will be the first time the USMNT has played a home friendly on artificial turf since 1994.

ESPN has a Q&A with Arena on how the team looks ahead of the March qualifiers.

At SI, a good read from Grant Wahl on Arena, who says,

The last four or five years [under Klinsmann], I just didn’t feel a connection to the program. There were too many swings up and down along the way that didn’t show the same culture that was developed after ’98. Right or wrong, Jurgen marketed a concept that never got there—about how good they were going to be and the style of play. We [coaches] don’t have a lot of control over that. If you want us to play like one of the great countries in the world, it’s not likely to happen in the short term. That doesn’t mean [our style is] wrong or bad—that means we’re playing the cards that are dealt to us.

Nevertheless, Arena praises Klinsmann: “He brought enhanced visibility to the program and he convinced U.S. Soccer that the national team demands a certain level of support it never had before. I remember going to Europe [on scouting trips] and having to buy a cellphone and a SIM card because they wouldn’t give me a global phone. I know I step into a position that is greatly supported.” More from Arena on the positive impact Klinsmann had at ESPN.

Arena has spoken out against the Trump travel ban:

I think it’s sad because one thing we do in our sport is that we are a global sport. We travel the world. We meet all kinds of people. And we conclude at the end that they are all beautiful people.

We have bad people in the world, we have bad people in our country, but clearly a large majority of people are good. It’s fabulous when we can give them an opportunity to be part of our country.

Trump supporter Geoff Cameron has spoken out in support of the travel ban:

I believe it’s important to support our President whether he was your candidate or not. I am pleased he is making security of all Americans one of his top priorities. Our enemies have stated—and in Europe they have proven—they will take advantage of lax immigration procedures for the purposes of staging attacks. A temporary pause on immigration for the purpose of evaluating and improving vetting procedures makes sense. The United States is one of the most generous and compassionate nations. Our ability to care for and support countries and refugees in need resides in our own sense of security. If we don’t feel safe, how can we protect others?

USWNT captain Becky Sauerbrunn has spoken out against the ban:

Soccer, more often than not, helps to unite the world, what this Muslim ban is doing is dividing it. Separating “Us” and “Them” to another degree, adding more division to a country that already struggles with race, religion, sexual orientation, and gender. When I represent my country on the field I do so with heartfelt gratitude to the people who fight for and defend our fundamental freedoms—to believe in whatever I want, to love whoever I want, and to be a valued member of society while doing so. That’s the America I play for.

I play for the America that embraces refugees from war-torn nations, for the America that welcomes all people who want the chance to experience the American Dream, for the America that appreciates the contributions from all the people it shelters. This Muslim ban is un-American—a betrayal of the values that make this country great. We can, we must be, we are better than this.

The AP reports, “Contract talks between the women’s national team and the U.S. Soccer Federation have resumed after the players’ union retained a new lawyer.” The article quotes Sunil Gulati, “The tone is just completely different, and everyone wants to get a deal done. The players want to play. We want to have a fair CBA, so I have no doubt we’ll get a deal done.” More on the resumption of negotiations at New York Times, ESPNW, and The Equalizer.


The Times reports, “The results of tests of video referees have proved so promising that FIFA is keen to have the option of using the system at next year’s World Cup, it can be revealed.” More at ESPN.

The AP reports, “FIFA is closing its match-fixing detection division, deciding to outsource the work of discovering betting irregularities in world football. The investigations that FIFA’s Early Warning System had been carrying out for a decade will now be run by data services company Sportradar.”

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

And with that, I want to say thank you to all of you dear readers for your support over the last seven years as today I am stepping down as managing editor of PSP so I can focus on completing two book projects on Philadelphia soccer history. I’ll still be contributing occasional articles to PSP but my daily involvement with the site is now at an end.

I do not have the words to express how deeply rewarding it has been helping to grow PSP since we launched the site in November of 2009 and how grateful I am to have had the opportunity to work with the writers and photographers who have volunteered their talent and time over the years, many of whom I now count as among my dearest friends. I would also like to thank the professional writers at other outlets who cover Philadelphia Union, and also those at the team — both players and staff — who so generously took this amateur enthusiast seriously, some of whom have become friends along the way.

PSP is one of the greatest things I will ever do in my life.

Thank you to all — I’ll see you at the game.


  1. Thank you, Ed, you will be missed on a daily basis. I appreciate all your work helping make PSP the great site that it is.

  2. Roger Allaway says:

    I’ll miss reading your writing at PSP, Ed, but I look forward to reading it elsewhere.

  3. Thank you Ed! All the best in your new endeavors and I think we will all be on the lookout for those occasional articles in the future.

  4. Dan C (formerly of 103) says:

    Ed, Thanks for all of the writing and newsy bits throughout the years! You will be missed.

  5. Ed, thanks for connecting us to the soccer world every morning. I, literally, look forward to reading it every morning with my tea. Some of my favorite reads were when Blatter was imploding FIFA.

    All the best to you. Will look forward to buying your books.


  6. Thanks for all your hard work, Ed! PSP has been a daily routine of mine for years and I appreciate all you’ve done for all of us following the soccer scene in Philly.

  7. Thanks, Ed – best of luck in new adventure.

  8. John O'Donnell Jr says:

    Thanks Ed, I appreciate that you have given us Philadelphia soccer junkies a place to come and get a daily fix of the beautiful game. Good luck with the book!

  9. Aw damn. good luck in the future.

  10. You are my daily 10:00AM reading. Every day. You will be missed.
    Hopefully, you can find a replacement who is even half as good. We’ll be lucky to have even that.

  11. I will not moan, because we were lucky to have you running and writing for this site as long as we had. It will probably take 2 people to replace you.

  12. Thanks, Ed! We’ll miss you. Forever grateful for PSP and your efforts.

  13. Don’t be a stranger.
    I know some nights you shook your head and said, “Why do I do this?” Thank you from one of the people for whom you did it.

  14. Thanks Ed! You will be missed

  15. Thanks Ed!!

    Looking forward to the books!

  16. Thanks, Ed. You’ve been providing me something to look forward to during lunch every weekday for about 5 of those 7 years (since I found PSP).

  17. Thank you Ed! I look forward to reading your books!

  18. I Am Citizen Insane says:

    Peace out Ed~~~ and in honor of you, and of the news –which never stops or slows no matter what…..
    ….Let’s get on with it. Have to say, while I do not completely agree with Geoff Cameron, I recognize his position and ‘we’ bandy and praise Michael Bradley for speaking out against something and call him a leader— yet, Geoff Cameron is getting killed on Twitter and in other circles for speaking his mind as well, which is contrary to the general narrative and sentiment of the populace- so he should ‘go and die.’
    This place of: either or, us and them, right or wrong is unfortunate. This country. The world. needs more Ken Wilber.
    “America America…Do you know the way to Santa Fe?”

    • Agree 100%. Cameron has every right to voice his opinion. Tell him you disagree. Tell him why. don’t tell him to ‘go and die.’ You have to have to be able to have debate without threats and ad hominem attacks. All the people doing that to Cameron do nothing but reinforce their ideological opponents’ narrative that they’re intolerant.

    • There is very little room in this society for the rational moderate anymore. Listen and communicate with both opinions. The louder you shout, the less people listen.
      I don’t share his opinion, but he is free to express it and continue the dialog.

    • Love and peace says:

      This is our “new” freedom of speech in this country. You free to speak as long you agree with me. America slowly becoming a joke of freedom and democracy.

    • John O'Donnell Jr says:

      “People fail to get along because they fear each other; they fear each other because they don’t know each other; they don’t know each other because they have not communicated with each other.” Martin Luther King

      “What I’ve found is, if you go to far left or to far right…you’ve just gone to far”
      Richard Jeni

    • I agree he can speak his mind and should be prepared for resistance but not threats. That is completely against American values. But he is supporting an action that literally did tell the refugees who went through the long and difficult procedure to get here legally, to just ‘go and die’.
      He is also saying it’s an immigration ban and it’s not. It’s a travel ban full stop. So if he wants to continue the dialog, I suggest he get his facts in line.

      • Love and peace says:

        I didn’t see any protests when thousands of bombs were dropped on those emigrants and their families

      • You weren’t looking then. Were they even comparable to the anger and demonstrations now? No even in the same universe. But the people have been shaken and now are willing to speak up more and the younger generation is starting to find their voice. Also, just because bad things happened in the past under the rule of the other side does not mean we can use that to excuse what is happening now.

      • Love and peace says:

        you sure 200 organizations funded by soros had nothing to do with anger and demonstrations?

  19. Thank you, Ed, for all the amazing content over the years. I can’t wait for your books!

  20. Thanks for all the great work Ed. Was required reading every morning. One stop shop for all you’d need to know. Looking forward to reading your future work.

  21. Atomic Spartan says:

    Ed, many thanks.Proof that amateurs – those who love what they do – can shine brighter than the pros.

  22. 700 Chopper says:

    Ed the football scene in Philly wouldn’t be what it is without you I am going to miss your fine writing. Go Union Doop Doop

  23. The Little Fish says:

    Thank you for all the hard work you put into PSP Ed. It showed in the product. I love what you’ve done here and will faithfully keep on reading. Best of luck with your projects, I very much look forward to reading them!

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