May 8, 2014 |
THERE IS a basic tenet in soccer: If you can't score goals, you can't win matches. You can get a draw, which on some levels can be considered a positive result, but you can't win. The Philadelphia Union can't score goals, and in the four-plus seasons the franchise has existed in Major League Soccer, it has never scored goals consistently enough to move into the upper echelon. Since its inaugural season in 2010, the Union has played 142 MLS matches, including last weekend at Seattle.
May 4, 2014 |
The Union have not won a game in more than a month. They have not scored a goal from the run of play in their last three games. They have fallen from playoff position in the Eastern Conference. These are the facts facing the Union as they travel to Seattle for a meeting Saturday with the Sounders, the hottest club in Major League Soccer, and Union manager John Hackworth does not deny any of it. He just refuses to buy into the panic that has surfaced in some corners this week. "We feel unlucky up to this point that we are not in a much better spot," Hackworth said.
March 28, 2014 |
UNION MIDFIELDER Maurice Edu was one of 22 players included on the U.S. men's national team roster for next Wednesday's friendly match against Mexico at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz. Set to start at 11 p.m. local time, the game will be broadcast live on ESPN. Edu, in his first season with Philadelphia (1-1-1), will still play in the Union's game against the Montreal Impact on Saturday at 4 p.m. at PPL Park. He will leave Sunday to join the national team and rejoin the Union after the friendly.
March 8, 2014 |
Midfielder Maurice Edu has returned to the United States, to Major League Soccer, and to what he hopes is his former dominant self. Of all the acquisitions the Union made in preparation for their fifth MLS season, none is expected to have a bigger impact than Edu, who turns 28 on April 18. Nobody expects more from Edu than he does of himself. "I do want to make an impact," he said. "I want to come and do well and win. " While winning is his No. 1 priority, Edu clearly has his eye on reemerging on the national stage.
March 7, 2014 |
IT WAS a tough ending for manager John Hackworth and the Union, who fell out of MLS Cup playoff contention in the final weeks of the 2013 regular season. But that is all in the past now. With key offseason additions, Hackworth believes it is time to move on and focus on the bright road ahead for the youngest team in Major League Soccer, beginning with tomorrow night's opening game at Portland (10:30, Comcast SportsNet). "When you look at the core group of guys that are returning to our team, we clearly needed more veteran guys, guys that are a little older with a little more experience and guys that we think are still in their prime," Hackworth said.
January 18, 2014 |
Major League Soccer commissioner Don Garber wasn't a popular figure when he was introduced to kick off the SuperDraft festivities at the Convention Center. With a large contingent of Union supporters from the Sons of Ben fan club, Garber was booed when introduced and it had to do with the stalled negotiations of midfielder Maurice Edu. There were reports that the Union were ready to sign the 27-year-old Edu to a one-year deal, but that MLS wasn't happy with how much he was being offered, a reported $1.2 million.
January 16, 2014 |
The Union traded central defender Jeff Parke, who starred at Downingtown West and Drexel, after his lone year with the club. Parke, 31, who made 31 starts, was sent Tuesday to D.C. United for defender Ethan White. The Union also received United's No. 1 ranking in the Major League Soccer allocation order, and United got the Union's No. 6 allocation ranking. The allocation process is for players who come to MLS outside the SuperDraft, who are not "discovered," or who are not designated players, according to Todd Durbin, MLS executive vice president of player relations and competition.
January 15, 2014 |
THE CURRENT perception of the Union is something CEO Nick Sakiewicz is well aware of. He knows about the narrative floating on Twitter and other social-media sites regarding his franchise - that the organization does not want to spend the money necessary to take it to the next level of competition in Major League Soccer. Never one to hold back his feelings, Sakiewicz bristles at the suggestions. "I kind of chuckle at the idea," Sakiewicz said the other day as he was about to board a flight to Europe.
December 14, 2013 |
New Mexico's Kyle Venter had a reaction similar to that of most amateur and professional soccer players seeing PPL Park for the first time. Venter, a senior defender, and his teammates had a walk-through on a chilly Thursday morning in preparation for Friday's College Cup soccer semifinals at the stadium in Chester. In the 5 p.m. game, New Mexico (14-5-2) will face Notre Dame (15-1-6). Atlantic Coast Conference rivals Maryland (16-3-5) and Virginia (13-5-5) will meet in the 7:30 p.m. semifinal.
October 11, 2013 |
Since the firing of Peter Laviolette as Flyers coach, a lot has been made of Eagles coach Chip Kelly's being the longest-tenured Philadelphia coach among the four "major" sports teams in Philadelphia after only five games. This news, which has been reported frequently, has the Union of Major League Soccer taking exception. John Hackworth was named the Union's interim manager (which in soccer is head coach) on June 13, 2012, replacing the fired Peter Nowak. Hackworth had the interim tag removed on Aug. 30, 2012.