- Mike, Audubon, Pa.
Peter Nowak: When we were in the concept of building our team, we felt that experience would be important at certain positions, but with Chris Seitz being with me at the Olympic Games (in Beijing) and on the national team, we believe that Chris has the tools to be a great goalkeeper in the future. Besides, how are you supposed to know that Kevin and Pat would have the season they are having now when you are assembling your team back in October? Simply, in this decision we were thinking long term.
Q: Why would the team waive Brian Perk? He played great against Celtic FC and was a draft pick that they now have nothing to show for. Is it that they want to allow him to catch on elsewhere?
- Jackson, Philadelphia
PN: It wasn't an easy decision, because Brian was a great guy, but to bring other players in, you have to let players go. Now he is L.A. and he's happy.
Q: Why is a player like Jack McInerney not getting a lot more playing time? He's proven he can score goals on the national team level and even in the league (goal against L.A. Galaxy) and with (Alejandro) Moreno seemingly on the mend, can we expect to see more of Jack in the future?
- Stephen, Wynnewood, Pa.
PN: I think Jack has more minutes than any of the four rookies besides (Danny) Mwanga. My message to these youngsters is to not have the mentality of whether or not I am going to play, but to make the most out of the minutes given to you. Regardless of whether it's 90 minutes or 90 seconds, these guys know they have to have the same mentality. And personally, I think we have given him a lot of playing time.
Q: What do you have against getting a designated player? Other teams like New York (Thierry Henry, Rafa Marquez), Los Angeles (David Beckham) and even Columbus when (Guillermo Barros) Schelotto was a DP there have proven that it can make a huge difference in the dynamic of a team's makeup. Are you guys considering it?
- Jaleel, Mayfair
PN: I don't believe one player can change the whole game. You still have 23 other guys with a $2.5 million salary cap and you cannot think the remaining 23 are going to be (Spanish stars) Xabi Alonsos, Gerard Piques and (Andres) Iniestas. I think you can spread around the $10 million you'd spend on a DP much better elsewhere. I think it's a short-term solution, and I'll never fall for that.
Q: How long do you expect it'll take before we sign our own homegrown player? D.C., Dallas and L.A. are all signing good players via that method.
- Jim, Kensington
PN: How easily we forget that 8 months ago the team didn't even exist. And now we are asking to have an academy player? It's easy to speculate when and how, but I won't do that. First, we have to establish a foundation, and we are doing that with many youth teams in the region.
Q: Did you send (Seattle coach) Sigi Schmid a personal greeting card for leaving Le Toux unprotected?
- Neil, Haverford, Pa.
PN: (Laughs) We knew of Sebastien's talent, so it was like Christmas to see his name on the (unprotected) list. You always have a decision to make on which players you'd like to protect; that's the bad side of the expansion draft. But we got him and as you can see it's been great.
Q: What's so great about (Temple product) J.T. Noone? He looked pretty lost in the game against Celtic FC. I know he's a local guy and all, but what has he done to impress the coaching staff?
- Bob, Cherry Hill, N.J.
PN: I think J.T. in general needs to have a little bit more confidence; he's been training with us and showing promise, but we need to see a little bit more from him. He's got the tools, but (whether or not he'll make it in MLS) still remains to be seen.
Q: If healthy, do you plan to reacquire Roger Torres (currently on loan from Colombian club America de Cali) for next season, considering his skill even for his age (19) is far superior to most of the guys on the field?
- Mark, Wilmington, Del.
PN: Yeah, Roger is very good with the ball on his feet, but he's still very young. He's not a pushover by any means, but in some cases he outthinks himself and instead of playing simple he'll try to do too much. This makes the game complicated for other guys to read (what he is going to do). But he is a player we see a lot of good things in the future from and we look to re-sign him as well.
Q: I know there is a learning curve for any expansion team; but how long do we as fans have to wait to see a team that can compete at a high level consistently?
- Amir, Bethlehem
PN: I disagree with this question because to say we haven't competed at a high level is false. Of the 20 games we have played so far, I can think of two where the teams we played were better than us. We have been dominate in 18 of the games we have played, in my opinion. If we eliminated all of the red cards and penalties we have given up this season, it might be an entirely different story. We have never given up and we are never going to give up. So my answer to this is very easy. Our roster is only going to get better. It's never going to get worse, which means as a team we can only get stronger.
Shots on goal
Union (4-11-5, 17 points) at New England (6-11-3, 21 points)
When: Tomorrow, 7:30 p.m.
Where: Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, Mass.
On the web: Streaming video on MLSSoccer.com
For kicks: The Union settled for a 1-1 tie vs. New England at PPL Park on July 31 . . . The Union is looking for just its second road win of the season. The Revolution is coming off consecutive road losses to Chicago and Kansas City . . . Revs rookie forward Zach Schilawski along with forward Marko Perovic are terrors on the attack, but Perovic is nursing a foot injury and is questionable . . . Defensively, Revs goalkeeper Matt Reis has a 1.63 goals against average over eight games since taking over for the injured Preston Burpo . . . Union forward Danny Mwanga (seven goals) is moving in on the all-time goal count for a rookie (11) set by the Chicago Fire's Damani Ralph in 2003.
Out for the Union: Shea Salinas, MF (left fibula fracture); qestionable: Alejandro Moreno, FW (right hamstring strain).
Out for the Revolution: Preston Burpo, GK (right leg fracture); Jason Griffiths, MF (left hamstring strain); Edgaras Jankauskas, FW (left adductor strain); Taylor Twellman, FW (concussion); questionable: Kevin Alston, DF (left hamstring strain); Zak Boggs, FW (concussion); Nico Colaluca, MF (right ankle sprain); Kheli Dube, FW (right knee MCL sprain); Marko Perovic, MF (left foot plantar fasciitis); probable: Cory Gibbs, DF (left ankle sprain).
HE SAID IT
"My right foot? Yeah, it's pretty much good for running, walking and keeping me balanced." - Union midfielder Justin Mapp, on being crafty despite reliance on his favored left foot.
Which nation has been a consistent member of FIFA the longest?
A. United States
By Jamie Clary, author of the First American Soccer Trivia Book, available at: www.soccerprofessor.com
Send search engine-free answer to: email@example.com
Answer will appear in an upcoming Union Meeting. Congrats to Jeff Fritz, who correctly answered Paul Simon and Peter Frampton as partial owners of the defunct Philadelphia Fury.