PSP looks at the 2013 efforts of the Philadelphia Union players who didn't get major minutes this season but spent most of the year with the Union: Aaron Wheeler, Chris Albright, Mike Lahoud, Leo Gonzales, Roger Torres, Oka Nikolov, and Gilberto Souza.
Editors Note: When I was a young man, that Albright kid from Juaniata (pronounced: june-e-at-ah) was spoken of in hushed and reverent tones.by those "in the know". He wasn't some rich kid from the suburbs claiming Philadelphia as home. He lived in the shadow of the Market Frankford Line, "the El" as we called it.
The off-season has begun for Philadelphia Union. PSP's Dan Walsh looks at the major issues facing the Union this off-season, assesses the team's needs, and evaluates which players will likely stay or depart.
Video and transcript of John Hackworth's weekly press conference. Topics include why no red card appeal, options at right back and left mid, the DC rivalry, Kleberson's role, what ticked Hack off, and more.
The Major League Soccer Player's Union released its second half salary numbers for the league yesterday. Philadelphia Union fans will be happy to learn of their three newest additions' (Fabinho, Oka Nikolov and Gilberto) salaries.
McInerney returns to the Union after being released from US Gold Cup squad. Hackworth suspended for Saturday's game. Le Toux happy to be playmaker, just wants to win. Blatter says Brazil hosting the World Cup may have been a mistake. More.
Philadelphia Union starting XI: (4-1-2-1-2) Zac MacMath; Raymon Gaddis, Jeff Parke, Amobi Okugo, Sheanon Williams; Brian Carroll; Michael Farfan, Danny Cruz; Kleberson; Sebastien Le Toux, Jack McInerney
Philadelphia Union bench: Keon Daniel, Antoinne Hoppenot, Chris Albright, Conor Casey, Chris Konopka, Leo Fernandes, Matt Kassel
Toronto starting XI: (4-4-2) Joe Bendik; Darren O'Dea, Steven Caldwell, Doneil Henry, Ryan Richter; Jeremy Hall, Matias Laba, Bobby Convey, Jonathan Osorio; Robert Earnshaw, Luis Silva
Toronto bench: Gale Agbossoumonde, Jeremy Brockie, Danny Koevermans, Reggie Lambe, Quillan Roberts, Darel Russell, Ashtone Morgan
Prediction: Despite playing like absolute ass against the top teams this year, the Union have actually gotten a lot of good results against weak competition this season.
The Union coaching staff has praised the team's depth but only 16 field players have seen more than 10 minutes in 2013 and 2 of those are no longer on the team. PSP takes a look at the impact Union substitutions have had on games this season.
Philadelphia Union starting XI: (4-4-2) Zac MacMath; Raymon Gaddis, Bakary Soumare, Amobi Okugo, Sheanon Williams; Brian Carroll, Danny Cruz, Kleberson, Michael Farfan; Jack McInerney, Sebastien Le Toux
Philadelphia Union bench: Chris Konopka, Chris Albright, Keon Daniel, Leo Fernandes, Roger Torres, Conor Casey, Antoine Hoppenot
Chicago Fire starting XI: (4-4-2) Sean Johnson; Wells Thompson, Jalil Anibaba, Austin Berry, Gonzalo Segares; Dilly Duka, Logan Pause, Jeff Larentowicz, Joel Lindpere; Patrick Nyarko; Chris Rolfe
Chicago Fire bench: Paolo Tornaghi, Michael Videira, Corben Bone, Brendan King, Alex, Quincy Amerikwa, Sherjill MacDonald
Prediction: The last time these two squads met, the Union won but things could have gone better.
Barring a negotiations breakdown, Kerith Gabriel says to expect a new Union signing this week. The latest in Valdes rumors (now with a Uruguayan theme). USMNT training camp. Blatter does not approve. More news.
Speculation has pointed to the Philadelphia Union's offseason transfer target list focusing upon the acquisition of players with scoring touch, but the newest link for the Union is out of the backline.
The Brotherly Game has learned that veteran defender Jeff Parke is in talks with the Union to bring the out-of-contract defender home to the Philadelphia area.
While he was serviceable in all appearances, and rarely a liability, his lack of speed and athleticism puts his playing future in doubt. His non-physical tools, however, may see his tenure with the Union continue for some time.
Brek Shea joins Geoff Cameron and Maurice Edu in Philly with Stoke. Hack plans to play "a bunch of guys." Gaber says not a question of if MLS expands but when and how much. Holden diagnosed with torn ACL. More.
Last year's record: 10 - 18 - 6 (eight out of 10 in the Eastern Conference, 16 out of 19 in Major League Soccer)
Key additions: Conor Casey, Sebastien Le Toux, Pat Anding
Key losses: Gabriel Gomez, Peter Nowak, Carlos Valdes
Projected starting lineup: (4-3-3 / 4-3-2-1) Zac MacMath / (r-l) Sheanon Williams, Jeff Parke, Bakary Soumare, Gabriel Farfan / Brian Carroll (CDM), Amobi Okugo, Michael Farfan / Le Toux, Jack McInerney / Casey - Bench: Chris Konopka (goalkeeper), Antoine Hoppenot, Roger Torres, Michael Lahoud, Raymon Gaddis, Chris Albright, Danny Cruz