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Archive for January, 2010

In addition to their closed winter tryout in December, the Hounds are holding an open Pro-Combine from February 23rd-25th. The tryout does require fees and pre-registration but it is open to professionals, college players, and amatuers alike. You can find more information here on the team website.

Have you ever attended a pro-tryout? Philly Soccer Page wants to know. Drop us a line in the comments portion and we would love to feature local players trying to make it professionally.

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With all of the news items having to do with Philadelphia soccer over the last few weeks, one might expect things to cool down until the season starts. Not likely. Though the Superdraft is over, and the Union roster a step closer to completion with USMNT Defender Michael Orozco on-board, things are just heating up. The Union players and staff are off to Greensboro, North Carolina in the coming days to open camp and Union supporters are selecting their seats in Chester Stadium. Recent estimates of season tickets sold are just over 9,000, with a jump in sales expected after the full schedule is announced. Expect MLS to come out with the full-season schedule shortly and we will hopefully see a resolution on the pending Collective Bargaining Agreement in the near future as well. We may also expect news on single-game tickets and maybe even a shirt sponsor in the next few weeks – its an exciting time to be a Philadelphia soccer fan.

Need something to get you ready for this news-heavy week?

If you missed it in the jumble, The Philadelphia Daily News reports they have an exclusive source about a sponsorship deal over in Chester. The source reveals that Pennsylvania Power and Light, or PPL, is closing in on a deal for the naming rights to Union Field. Supporters are already speculating on the formal name of the stadium, but I’m partial to “The Lighthouse” or the iconic “Stadium of Power and Light”. Sounds like something straight out of a superhero comic.

Should be an entertaining week in domestic soccer. Stay tuned.

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Michael Orozco

Philadelphia Union has acquired defender Michael Orozco on loan from Mexican team San Luis FC, the team confirmed today.

Orozco, who played for the U.S. Olympic team in 2008, moves to Philadelphia courtesy of a deal between the Union and the New York Red Bulls, who had first crack at Orozco. New York gave the Union the top spot in the allocation order for claiming U.S. national team members moving to MLS. In exchange, Philadelphia gave up an undisclosed amount of allocation money. It’s unclear whether the Red Bulls will also get the Union’s slot in the allocation order.

Orozco played for Union manager Peter Nowak at the Olympics, so the two are familiar with each other. He is 23 years old and has historically played left back and center back.

“We hope to have him as an anchor at the back of our defense for a long time to come,” Nowak said.

(more…)

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Barcelona Baby

It's what all of the cool babies will be wearing this spring.

Barcelona fans had much to celebrate the first week of May in 2009. First, on May 2nd, they kicked the bejesus out of Real Madrid 6-2, effectively ending any questions as to who would be La Liga champs. Then, on May 6th, Andres Iniesta scored a screamer of a goal in the last seconds of stoppage time against Chelsea, thus advancing to the Champions League final where they then thoroughly dismantled Manchester United.

Celebrations for many no doubt went on long into the night. For most, the after effect was probably no more than a hoarse throat and lingering hangover. For some, it seems, the celebration of these momentous events will be more lasting.

According to the results of a survey by Barcelona radio station ComRadio of local hospitals and clinics, requests for beds at maternity hospitals have gone through the roof. Births this week, and those expected for next week, are 45% above average.

The El Mundo newspaper quoted Mercedes Rodriguez of the city’s Quiron Clinic as saying, “When we notice some sort of surge we look for the reason and it’s evident that the cause of the increase this week is the euphoria of Barca fans thanks to the huge win (against Real) and Iniesta’s goal.”

According to the paper, in Barcelona the baby boom is popularly referred as “the Iniesta generation.”

No word yet on whether there has been a spike in naming babies “Andres” or “Andrea.”

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The players and league extend their negotiating to Feb. 12, so the expiration of the collective bargaining agreement on Feb. 1 is no longer the drop-dead date.  The AP has a quick summary.

U.S. forward Kenny Cooper moves to Plymouth Argyle on loan.

The Los Angeles Sol of Women’s Professional Soccer have folded. They were the best team in the league last year and had the best player, Marta, who will now be drafted to another team.

Egypt and Ghana will meet in the final of the African Cup of Nations.

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In a semifinal featuring an intense regional rivalry — as is the case with yesterday’s other semi between Algeria and Egypt, which promised to be full of vitriol and ended up a blowout — both squads were sadly depleted, with the result being a match of far lesser quality than what one would expect of a derby featuring two World Cup contenders.

The Black Stars seemed lost throughout the match without the injured Essien (possible MCL tear) to lend his rock-solid composure at mid.  And with Stephen Appiah missing from mid as well, many a through ball went awry as Ghana either failed to move through central effectively or to connect in the final third and put any consistent pressure on Enyeama.   (more…)

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The Philadelphia Union announced today that it has entered into a partnership with local ABC affiliate channel 6. In a press release the Union said that “the commitment is for as many Philadelphia Union games as possible to be carried live on 6abc, and all games will re-broadcast on 6abc’s digital channel – 6.2 (also known as the Live Well HD Network).”

Union president Tom Veit said, “This is truly a landmark day for Philadelphia Union . . . The opportunity to partner with not only one of the best television stations in the nation, but one of the most respected brands in the Delaware Valley, is something very special and meaningful to us as an organization. We know our fans will show their appreciation by tuning in and supporting WPVI, much like they have already shown their commitment to us.”

Bernie Prazenica, President & General Manager of 6abc spoke of the “buzz” around the new MLS team. “We believe the MLS will be a great success in the Delaware Valley, both on the field and in the community, and we’re excited to present this new team to our loyal viewers.”

I forgot to mention when I first posted this that my personal online chat representative at Comcast, “Gladys,” has confirmed that Fox Soccer Plus, the new soccer channel from FSC that will begin broadcasting on March 1st and will feature the games that Setanta USA (due to go off air on February 28th) used to carry will be included as part of the Sports Entertainment package that includes Fox Soccer Channel and GolTV at no extra cost. “Gladys” has never been wrong before. Of course, I’ve never “chatted” with her before either. My fingers are crossed.

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