Player Ratings: Happy Holidays from the Philadelphia Union

This is a busy time of year for everyone. There are gifts to buy, stockings to stuff, and many travel quite far to see loved ones in the festive holiday season. The soccer world isn’t spared from this wonderful chaos so there’s not much news to talk about for the Union, MLS, or even the game at large. But into this news vacuum, the Union have dropped this present into our laps:

It’s fluff in the best possible way. It’s meant to make you chuckle and is designed to be completely enjoyable even if you only have a cursory knowledge of the team and it’s players. We’re clearly not supposed to do much with this, other than share it to help the Union’s social media metrics.

But, what if we extrapolated wildly from the limited information presented here? What if we looked at these musical performances the way we look at in-game performances? And what if we then issued ratings for these players?

Auston Trusty — 8

Very exciting debut from the Union Homegrown. The performance was very raw and there’s clearly a lot of work to be done on that voice, but the confidence and commitment shown by the young defender is very inspiring. Of concern, though, around the eight second mark it becomes clear he doesn’t know his teammate’s names. This is less than ideal.

C.J. Sapong — 7

Early on his intensity felt a little out of place in a Christmas video, but once his saxophone solo started, it was clear C.J. was just getting in the headspace needed for peak performance.

Marcus Epps — 8

Epps brought festive happiness early in the video, a perfect compliment to his chosen instrument of jingle bells.

Haris Medunjanin — 7

He’s usually controlling the tempo of the game, so it’s unsurprising he wound up in the rhythm section. The first cymbal hit in particular was spectacularly timed.

Alejandro Bedoya — 7

Putting his Colombian heritage to work on the guacharaca‘s cousin, the güiro, the Union captain delivered a reliable performance.

John McCarthy — 7

A fine performance. John was easily among the most enthusiastic players in this video. But the maracas seem an odd choice, considering the asset his larger-than-average finger span could have been on other instruments. The brief appearance on clarinet was an improvement, though all too brief. Hopefully the Union video team learns to better utilize the Philly local.

Andre Blake – 9

It almost seems unfair that Andre Blake is the best at this too, but did you see that xylophone work? We should stop worrying about losing the Jamaican international to Europe, and start worrying he’ll leave us to study at Berklee.

Jack Elliott – 8

Only a brief appearance from the Brit, but how he showed the spirit of the season would make Charles Dickens proud.


  1. Chris Gibbons says:

    Lots of potential from Trusty, but an 8 is wayyy too high. He needs to spend some time in the studio, really do some diaphragm breathing work, and focus on pitch control. The desire is there, though, which is promising.

  2. Actual players would have been a better present. Alas, they are the Union.

  3. What no Geiger counter? If he were in the video then he would have clearly missed several key high notes and could not keep up with the rhythm and tempo of the music.

  4. Wonder if Keegs was petulantly tweeting about the lineup for this video?

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