May 6, 2011
The Union have a narrow focus in preparing for Friday's Major League Soccer game in Portland against the expansion Timbers. Portland's field is among the most narrow in MLS and is made of artificial turf. According to a team official, the dimensions at Jeld-Wen Field are 70 yards by 110 yards. The only other MLS pitch that is as narrow is Toronto's, which is 69 yards by 105 yards. So the Union moved their practices this week to YSC Sports in Wayne, which has an artificial-turf field with dimensions similar to Portland's.
February 1, 2012 |
The Union had their second bombshell announcement in two days by trading star forward Sebastien Le Toux to the Vancouver Whitecaps FC on Tuesday for an undisclosed amount of allocation money. Le Toux has been the face of the franchise, scoring 25 goals and adding 20 assists in the team's first two seasons. He was also the Union's first all-star selection, in 2010. "While this decision wasn't easy, we are confident that the allocation money we receive will provide the flexibility for us to compile the best possible roster for 2012 and beyond," Union manager Peter Nowak said.
September 7, 2011 |
LET'S FACE IT, it's time to stop sugarcoating the obvious: The Union needs a win. With the playoffs looming, ties help little and even with games in hand, a loss still hurts. The Union's last win over a league opponent came against tonight's opponent, New England, on July 17. That's right - July. Out of a possible 18 points in its last six matches, the Union has captured only three. In that time, the club added midfielder Freddy Adu, rid itself of top scorer Carlos Ruiz and was forced to insert backup goalkeeper Zac MacMath.
April 17, 2011 |
For almost the entire second half, it looked as if the Union were en route to a 1-0 win that was just like their other wins this season: a combination of strong defense and an opportunistic goal. But in the closing moments, the Seattle Sounders tore up the script. Alvaro Fernandez's header in traffic deflected off the right post and past Faryd Mondragon in stoppage time of the second half to give the Sounders a 1-1 draw with the Union at a rain-swept PPL Park. Union manager Peter Nowak expressed disappointment that his team couldn't finish off the win. "At some point, we need to not be afraid to score a second goal," Nowak said.
April 2, 2011 |
This is clearly a much different start to the Major League Soccer season for both the Union and the Los Angeles Galaxy. The Union (2-0) visit David Beckham and the Galaxy (1-1-1) in Saturday's 10:30 p.m. game at the Home Depot Center. In their inaugural MLS season, the Union were 1-3 overall and 0-3 on the road before their 3-1 loss in Los Angeles on May 1. The Union lost their first five MLS road games before beating Houston in late May. This season, the Union opened with a 1-0 win at Houston.
March 18, 2011 |
While there is optimism as the Union prepare for their second Major League Soccer season, there also is uncertainty. Has this team progressed enough to be a playoff contender after an 8-15-7 inaugural season? With the addition of veteran goalie Faryd Mondragon, the Union appear to have corrected their biggest weakness. But there are questions about the defense, and the midfield has to be sorted out. The strength of the team should be the offense. Team manager Peter Nowak employs an attacking style, but last year the Union scored 35 goals in 30 games.
August 6, 2011
MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCER Houston Dynamo (6-7-9) at Union (8-5-8) 8 p.m. Saturday at PPL Park. TV: 6ABC. Last MLS game: Houston was a 3-1 winner over visiting Seattle last Saturday. The Union played the host Chicago Fire to a 1-1 draw on Wednesday. Outlook: The Union are 5-1-4 at home while Houston is 0-4-6 on the road. . . . These teams opened their seasons against one another on March 19 with the Union winning, 1-0, at Houston on a goal by defender Danny Califf in the fifth minute.
March 21, 2011 |
HOUSTON - So many times last year, the script was similar, with the Union dominating play but coming up short on the scoreboard. As they finished 8-15-3 in their first season in Major League Soccer, the Union played an entertaining style, one that had them constantly attacking, even if they frequently got burned on counterattacks. So maybe it was a bit of poetic justice that in Saturday's opening, 1-0 win over the Houston Dynamo at Robertson Stadium, the Union were back on their heels instead of attacking.
September 10, 2011 |
Despite another game of dominating possession the Union couldn't snap their winless streak that now stands at eight games. Dominating everywhere but the scoreboard, the Union played the expansion Portland Timbers to a scoreless draw on Saturday before a sellout crowd of 18,504 at PPL Park. The Union (8-7-12, 36 points) are now 0-3-5 in their last eight games. Portland stands at 9-12-6 for 33 points. The Union came closest to scoring in the 88th minute when Kyle Nakazawa one-timed a Justin Mapp cross and hit the crossbar from 16 yards out. "I thought it was in," said Nakazawa, who replaced Veljko Paunovic in the 77th minute.
September 8, 2011 |
The Union had one of their best offensive outputs of the season, and every bit of effort was needed to compensate for a defense that continues to show serious leaks. Trailing 4-1 at halftime, the Union roared back to grab a 4-4 draw on Wednesday against the New England Revolution in a Major League Soccer match before 16,148 at PPL Park in Chester. Sebastien Le Toux earned the equalizer with a volley from close range during second-half stoppage time. "Four goals in a half shouldn't happen and at times we looked like an expansion team," Union team manager Peter Nowak said.