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Brotherly Game Nov 21, 2014

You Be The GM: Should Danny Cruz Stay Or Go?

The You Be The GM series shifts to the backups who may still be around after the MLS Expansion Draft. These are the players with cult followings and niche capabilities. Do they have enough to make the team? Full disclosure: I am currently drinking bourbon as I type. I believe writing on the topic of Danny Cruz commands some blurring of reality. He might just be the most polarizing player on the Philadelphia Union and therefore defies a true singular perspective. When he comes onto the field he tends to be cheered loudly by the crowd; I believe because he is the essence of hustle and effort....
Brotherly Game Nov 20, 2014

Union Academy in College: Tournament Time

Maryland, Michigan State, Georgetown, Virginia and eight other teams with players who played for the Union Academy earn bids to the NCAA tournament. The NCAA tournament field of 48 was unveiled Monday, and as expected the field has plenty of Philadelphia Union Academy connections. A total of twelve teams boast players with academy experience either in their starting lineups or among the reserves. Leading the way in the field are Andrew Herr and Michigan State as the No. 3 seed despite losing to Maryland on penalty kicks in the Big 10 tournament semifinal over the weekend. Maryland, with...
Brotherly Game Nov 19, 2014

You Be The GM: Should Ethan White Stay Or Go?

A good GM is always using the latest information to inform decisions. Given recent comments about the future of Maurice Edu, the fans must take a hard look at the future of Ethan White. Newly anointed Philadelphia Union manager Jim Curtin teased his intention to resign Maurice Edu and pair him with Carlos Valdes at center back. It's an appealing tandem to be sure, but it leaves the future of Ethan White in question, especially as the MLS Expansion Draft looms. When Jim Curtin replaced John Hackworth as interim head coach, Ethan White enjoyed a surprising renaissance. He started twelve of...
Brotherly Game Nov 19, 2014

Maurice Edu's Record At Center Back

Jim Curtin invited us to look at Edu's record as a center back. So we did. In a recent interview with Dave Zeitlin for MLSSoccer.com, Philadelphia Union manager Jim Curtin expressed a desire to bring back Maurice Edu and pair him with Carlos Valdes at center back. He's licking his chops at the thought of the All Star caliber center back tandem shutting down the likes of Kaka and David Villa. Curtin made the comment. "If you look at his record when we played center back, it was successful" Indeed the Union record with Edu at center back looks successful. Under Curtin, Edu played thirteen...
Brotherly Game Nov 19, 2014

Curtin expects Edu to return, Okugo to go

Interview with mlssoccer.com raises more questions than it answers as Philadelphia Union boss Jim Curtin says future is still uncertain for Okugo. In an interview with mlssoccer.com's Dave Zeitlin, Philadelphia Union manager Jim Curtin talks about having Maurice Edu - currently on loan from Stoke City - returning to anchor the back line with Carlos Valdes in 2015, saying that he was "cautiously optimistic" that the Union, Edu, and Stoke would come to an agreement. Edu split his time between central defensive midfielder and center back in 2014, playing in 31 of the club's 34 MLS matches and...
Brotherly Game Nov 18, 2014

Chicago Fire declines to exercise the options on eleven players

Would any of them benefit the Union? The Chicago Fire exercised contract options on six of their players today, which means they also declined to exercise the options on eleven of their players today. As reported by our friends at Hot Time in Old Town earlier this month, there are quite a few recognizable names on the list. Would the Union be able to benefit from this roster purge? Hot Time in Old Town looked at the players whose options were declined, : Bakary Soumare: Baky had a "baffling" stint with the Philadelphia Union. The club acquired Vancouver Whitecaps slot in the allocation...
Brotherly Game Nov 18, 2014

Andre Blake and Jamaica defeats Trinidad and Tobago in shootout to win 2014 Caribbean Cup

Ain't nuthin' but a G thang baby Andre Blake and Jamaica defeated Trinidad and Tobago in a shootout to win the 2014 Caribbean Cup - their sixth overall. Not only did the Reggae Boyz secure their spot in the 2015 Gold Cup, they also punched their ticket to the 2016 Copa América Centenario tournament. Jamaica dominated the match, not allowing Trinidad and Tobago a single shot on goal during the initial 90 minutes. When the match went to penalties, Blake made a save on the first shot he faced from Cardiff City striker Kenwyne Jones. Trinidad goalkeeper Marvin Phillip also made a save, however...
Brotherly Game Nov 17, 2014

Philadelphia Union announce David Seltzer as new investor in the club

Philadelphia area financial advisor joins Jay Sugarman et al as investors in the club. Give credit where credit is due - the much maligned Nick Sakiewicz has always had a bit of a nose for the business side of things (when he's not collecting goalkeepers and playing real-life Football Manager). Today Sakiewicz and the Philadelphia Union announced that Philadelphia-based financial advisor David Seltzer "and family members" have been named as investors in the club. Mr. Seltzer is now listed on the club's ownership page along with the Jay Sugarman, Nick Sakiewicz, other owners. It was not...
Brotherly Game Nov 17, 2014

Andre Blake and Jamaica defeat Haiti, advance to Caribbean Cup Final

Out the gate on the for realla, a thrilla, or a Natural Born Killa Jamaica defeated Haiti 2-0 on Sunday to advance to the 2014 Caribbean Cup Final against Trinidad and Tobago on Tuesday. Philadelphia Union goalkeeper Andre Blake stopped a penalty in the 89th minute to preserve his second straight shutout. The winner of the match will automatically qualify for the Copa América Centenario, and both teams (as well as Haiti and Cuba, who will play for third place on Tuesday)  also qualify for the 2015 Gold Cup. Derby County forward Simon Dawkins scored the Reggae Boyz first goal in the...
Brotherly Game Nov 17, 2014

You Be The GM: Should Pedro Ribeiro be Protected or Not?

The You be the GM series shift gears to focus on the expansion draft and which players are most expendable. With the fans overwhelmingly in Andrew Wenger's camp heading into next year, the Union is running thin on players they can protect. Most people seem to agree that the following ten players should be protected: Maidana, Nogueira, Okugo, Gaddis, Valdes, Le Toux, A goalkeeper, White, Williams and Wenger. The vote was less convincing when it came to Maurice Edu given his salary but he was nevertheless a popular keeper. If Edu is protected there are your 11 players. This is who the...
Brotherly Game Nov 16, 2014

Andre Blake and Jamaica rout Antigua and Barbuda 3-0

It was definitely a Dre Day - understand this my man Dre couldn't be touched The Philadelphia Union's Andre Blake and Jamaica blanked Antigua and Barbuda 3-0 on Friday night to draw themselves level with Haiti in the Group B standings of the 2014 Caribbean Cup tournament. Kemar Lawrence of Harbour View F.C. got the scoring started for the Reggae Boyz with a goal in the 29th minute (Harbour View F.C. is where loanee Brian Brown and Academy prospect Justin McMaster came from), and Darren Mattocks of the Vancouver Whitecaps put Jamaica up 2-0 just before the half. Captain Rodolph Austin of...
Brotherly Game Nov 15, 2014

Off-kilter Quotables and Notables from Jay Sugarman's Press Conference

In which Sakiewicz twitches while Jay Sugarman delivers his quinquennial address. With Philadelphia Union Chairman/Owner Jay Sugarman making his first real appearance of import in five years, big things were perhaps expected of this special announcement.  Sadly it was all a bit of an anti-climax as the big news was merely making the rumors of Muelensteen's 'appointment' a formal reality.  In the face of nothing really exciting to note here are the thoughts that ran through my head upon watching the presser. - There was more than a touch of the Marco Rubios about Sugarman's opening...
Brotherly Game Nov 14, 2014

Philadelphia Union Hire Rene Meulensteen as....Something?

The writing was on the wall for the hiring of some type of techincal or sporting director. Meulensteen will be a consultant instead, which is only good news. The Philadelphia Union had a major announcement just one week after their last major announcement. Much like the previous one, everyone seemed to know what it was about. Yes, it involved Rene Meulensteen. Yes, Jay Sugarman was there speaking for the first time in his life as far as we know it. There wasn't, however, the hire of Meulensteen directly with the club and no, Nick Sakiewicz was not let go of his role. Rene Meulensteen was...
Brotherly Game Nov 14, 2014

Union Academy in College: Maloney named Big 10 Offensive Player of the Year

Thomas Shiiba and Navy outlast Army, Connor Maloney named Big 10 offensive player of the year and Alex Shinsky named to league's first XI. Thomas Shiiba and Navy celebrated a second straight victory over arch rivals Army last Friday night, with a golden goal capping off a wild overtime in front of 10,100 fans at PPL Park. Shiiba started the match in front of his hometown crowd and played 54 minutes for the Midshipmen, but didn't see the field in a dramatic overtime that saw a handball in the box, a saved penalty kick by the Navy keeper, and a player on each team being sent off. Penn State's...
Brotherly Game Nov 13, 2014

Andre Blake and Jamaica tie Martinique 1-1

With all of the talk about Zac and Rais, some people had something to say, but nothing comes out when they move their lips - just a bunch of gibberish because you probably act like you forgot about Dre. Philadelphia Union goalkeeper Andre Blake and Jamaica's Reggae Boyz drew Martinique 1-1 in the opening round of the 2014 Caribbean Cup in Montego Bay, Jamaica last night. Vancouver Whitecaps forward Darren Mattocks scored the opening goal for Jamaica in the thirteenth minute, however Martinique equalized in the 29th minute on a Yoann Arquin goal. The Jamaica Observer put it this way: After...
Brotherly Game Nov 13, 2014
Opposite View - Three questions with Cottage Confidential about René Meulensteen

Opposite View - Three questions with Cottage Confidential about René Meulensteen

In this edition of Opposite View we talk about the Philadelphia Union's newest hire with Andrew Beck of Cottage Confidential- SB Nation's Fulham Football Club blog. tBG) Seventy-five days as a manager is short by anyone's standards. What happened at Fulham with Rene Meulensteen that saw him flame out like that? CC) Something to consider is that Meulensteen was never actually the manager of Fulham. He was hired as the first team coach to work under Martin Jol. If rumors are to be believed, Jol was horrible about running practices and sometimes didn't even show up for them. Meulensteen (at...
Brotherly Game Nov 13, 2014

You Be The GM: Should Andrew Wenger Be Protected or Not?

The You be the GM series shift gears to focus on the expansion draft and which players are most expendable. After looking at the known "free agents", players on loan and the goalkeeping quagmire the focus of the series now turns to the Expansion Draft. The Philadelphia Union will concede talent and get nothing in return, but are allowed to protect eleven players, and a twelfth after the first player is drafted. The question is which talent to protect, and who to potentially give up? The Brotherly Game staff voted on which players they would protect, and here is a chart that shows which...
Brotherly Game Nov 13, 2014
Paid Their Dues: Nowak Got a Job

Paid Their Dues: Nowak Got a Job

Maybe they didn't Google him? Former Philadelphia Union manager Peter Nowak is now the technical director for Antigua & Barbuda. The decision was made late last month. As the technical director, Nowak will not likely be involved with the players on a day-to-day basis, which is great for their sakes. Considering that he was a great player with a sharp soccer mind, Nowak should be successful in growing soccer in the small Caribbean nation. Of course, his only major downfalls as a head coach were his corruption, mental and physical abuse, and general dickbaggery. On a personal level, the move...
Brotherly Game Nov 12, 2014

Union look set to unveil Meulensteen

In Football Manager, everyone knows the first thing you do is hire Rene Meulensteen. The Union waited a bit, but look set to sign Sir Alex Ferguson's ex-assistant nonetheless. Delco Times beat reporter Matthew DeGeorge tweeted out last night that ex-Fulham boss Rene Meulensteen will be added to the Philadelphia Union payroll. Person on Union payroll says Union will add Rene Meulensteen to payroll http://t.co/mEtyE3P42I — Matthew De George (@sportsdoctormd) November 13, 2014 This is most likely the "major announcement" that Jonathan Tannenwald tweeted about earlier in the day. The...
Brotherly Game Nov 11, 2014

The MLS CBA: The Growing Divide Between the MLS Haves and Have Nots

Major League Soccer's parity is often trumpeted as a key to the league's success. But the parity is dangerously fading as the salary divide between the Haves and Have Nots increases. Don Garber needs to earnestly manage this issue carefully as he negotiates the next CBA. I went on a backpacking trip around the Black Forest Trail in Northern Pennsylvania a few years back. I was in the middle of reading Ernest Hemingway's To Have And Have Not and brought it with me on the three night hike. Even though the book would add a little weight to my pack, I had a dream of finding a few moments of...

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    You Be The GM: Which Goalkeepers Should Stay And Go?

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