Daily news roundups

News roundup: Et tu U2?, Blake resurgence, WC2026 bid, Pizarro, and more

Photo: Rob Simmons

Philadelphia Union

Was the defense the reason Andre Blake had a down year in 2019?

There was a shakeup in the Union’s USL coaching staff. Sven Gartung is now head coach.

Apparently the Union lost to FC Cincinnati in yesterday’s closed-door scrimmage. Details are… sparse.


The city’s 2026 World Cup bid just got a $2M bump from the city’s hospitality industry.

Major League Soccer

Rodolfo Pizarro is finally headed to Inter Miami from Monterrey. The transfer reportedly cost $12 million.

Bruce Arena is old, grumpy, and wrong.

Don’t publicly finance stadiums, St. Louis.

U.S. Soccer

The USWNT will take on Brazil and Australia in friendlies this spring.


  1. WORLD CUP IN PHILLY!!!!!!!!!!!
    *clap* *clap* *clap clap clap*
    WORLD CUP IN PHILLY!!!!!!!!!!!
    *clap* *clap* *clap clap clap*
    Make it happen!!!

    • Yeah no thanks. I’m not really into making FIFA richer while bankrupting Philadelphia.

    • OneManWolfpack says:

      I’m all for it. 2026 is gonna be nuts in this city. World Cup. MLS All Star game. And don’t be surprised when they announce the NHL and NBA All Star games too. PLUS – the Semiquincentennial (250th) Birthday of America celebrations as well!

  2. Every starter save Sergio Santos can be seen in the video highlights on the club’s website.
    Michee Ngalina can be positively identified as playing during both halves of the match.
    Same comment for Kacper Przybylko. Blake in the second half is only probably as lighting issues might have altered Bendik’s or Freese’s facial skin tone, but I really don’t think so.
    The injury list per Jim Curtin in a story somewhere yesterday, together with Mbaizo being positively IDed at RB in the 2nd 1/2 suggests Real may have gone 90 at LB.
    The other mystery is whether McKenzie went 90 at LCB. Collin was not seen on the pitch and not positively IDed in either the warm-up segment of the video or the two bench shots in the 1st 1/2. The bald back of the head seen in the warm-up has the wrong skull shape and ears IMO.
    Monteiro definitely was the AM in the 1st 1/2.
    Creavalle was not on the pitch in any of the video segments — his hair, eyebrows and beard are distinctive.
    de Vries, Fontana, Ilsinho, and “El Brujo” Martinez were all positively IDed in the midfield in the second half.
    The above is based on evidence that would meet the “clear and convincing” standard used by the American legal system, in my considered opinion.

  3. Did I read correctly that the UNION gave a $1MM GRANT to the World Cup Committee?

    The whole idea of hosting a major sporting event like that is open to debate as to whether it is worthwhile for a city. (As I write this I don’t recall if it was Soccernomics, Freakonomics or How Soccer Explains the World, where the issue was addressed in depth.) The thing that is NOT open to question is whether the team on the pitch could have been helped by the expenditure of those funds for a player or more right now. I see how the idea that a worldwide tournament right here could be seen as helping the local team’s visibility, but these are national teams, not MLS teams. There wasn’t enough of a bounce from the USWNT World Cup win in 1999 to sustain the WUSA, and there couldn’t possibly be enough of a local bounce from a local World Cup to make the Union into a top four local sports contender. Hell, use those funds to pave the parking lot and you get more bang for the buck than giving the grant to the local committee to bring the tournament here.

    The infrastructure is not present in the Philadelphia area to get the Cup here for a solely local endeavor, and it is much more likely that there will be a regional award of those games. This team should be using their funds to work on this team, not some fanciful ego driven enterprise like this.

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