Archive for the ‘MLS Critique’ Category

Reaction, and Subsequent Rant of the Le Toux Trade (Le Toux Gate)

February 1, 2012 1 comment

I first want to start off with a little personal note.  I am a casual soccer fan by trade.  I know the very big names in EPL, and maybe some in La Liga, and that’s about it.  When I found soccer on TV I could easily watch it, and not have to root for anyone.  I enjoyed watching it.  This started in 2006 when watching the world cup.  Needless to say, being that this is America, I never really watched that much soccer on TV in between then and 2010.  When I heard that Philadelphia was getting a team, I was excited.  For starters, this was a sport I enjoyed and wanted to play (goalkeeper) when I was young, and the idea of a brand new team when I’m fully able to watch from the beginning excited me.

I was not an original season ticket holder.  Didn’t have the money, and generally never had that ‘drive’ to invest in something as such.  Naturally, the 2010 season changed that mind.  Maybe it helped with the World Cup being on and watching every single game, while at work, and at a bar on weekends, helped carry it over.  Meeting some Sons of Ben at the bars (specifically Tommy Roletter, fellow la salle alumn during a viewing of USA vs Australia pre world cup) helped peek my interest.  The team itself showed promise in its first year – aside from a multitude of mistakes and divots, and it was invigorating.  I saw 3 games that year, once from 101, another from 121, and another in the river end.  All were exciting and convinced me, mostly due to the atmosphere created by THE FANS, to purchase season tickets for 2011.  It even got me started in writing a blog which I (or my coworker Nick, I forget which one of us started the idea) took to a coworker who also enjoyed watching the Union (and all Philly sports) and started towards the end of the 2010 season.  I had also went out on a limb by myself, fronting for 3 tickets, only one claimed for – mine.  Everyone I had brought enjoyed themselves and wanted to come again.   And 2011 was a great year, and during this off season – even with a plethora of rumors – next season showed more potential than Adu at 15 years old.

Now though?  There’s a dark cloud hanging over the Union, and we all know why.

There’s no need to get into the whole Le Toux thing… by now, if you follow anything Union oriented on Twitter you know that he was trialing at Bolton – we didn’t know why.  Many of us assumed he got a call and wanted to play in the EPL.  More power to him.  Then, suddenly, we get rumors on Monday (yesterday, or as I’m writing after midnight 2 days ago) that he is going to Vancouver.  Bolton fans, Bolton management, and someone in Vancouver stating this.  Needless to say Monday night we were confused.  Then, confusion became a sudden convulsion as to why when Le Toux himself confirmed it in a tweet, before either team or MLS of the transfer.  This confusion turned into outrage to the point where we were all just repeating ourselves.  It didn’t make sense.  How could it.  For what could we possibly be getting for not only our franchise, not only our sponsor (and league wide face for said sponsor), but our star player?  Money and an international spot?  Draft picks?  Money and draft picks?  Someone else?

Only money.  Undisclosed, as the norm for MLS (needless to say Union as well).

Okay, we’ll give Nowak the benefit of the doubt.  He’s proven us wrong on many occasions (except for Migz)… maybe we will put this to good use.

They changed their player profile for their facebook page before any announcement.  Okay… well…  After the announcement, another announcement saying we purchased Torres’ contract and he’s no longer on loan.  That’s a plus, but we should have gotten much more for Le Toux than that, one would think (or hope).

And then this was reported during or after (I’m actually not sure) his farewell party at Kildare’s in West Chester.  Chris Vito reports the interview with Le Toux for The DelCo Times Herald, which can be found here <<< hyperlink.  Here are some snippets of Le Toux’s quotes (who is the most humble philadelphian player and probably wouldn’t say this if still contracted) if you haven’t seen it, cried, and ripped your Union posters in rage.  Queue the worst PR move in Union history.  Like, this really ranks up there with New England Revolution and DTF (defend the fort for those who don’t know).

  • “I wanted to stay in Philly. I didn’t care about the money.”
  • The only thing they wanted is the money,” Le Toux said. “Being with this team and being a guy, not to build around, but to help this team, was what I wanted. … They must have wanted to sell me for money because they needed money. We don’t have a nice practice facility and that is something they promised since I am here. It’s terrible.
  • “That’s why they pushed me to Bolton — money.”
  • “I told them I would consider (Bolton), but I knew it wasn’t good for me,” Le Toux said. “I was out of shape. I hadn’t kicked a ball in five weeks. I didn’t want to go over there and injure myself in cold weather. What good is that for me or (the Union)?”
  • “I asked Peter (Monday at YSC) what was going on and he didn’t let me talk,” Le Toux said. “He started to get mad at me, telling me that I was very not respectful to leave Bolton early. I told him, ‘First, I respect myself.’ But I always did everything they asked me to do.

And the kicker quote of the night – “I would be happy to just retire than play for Peter again,”

I take it from twitter and some comments that some more information was divulged at Kildare’s that makes the situation even less satisfying.  Yes, this is apparently possible.

All things considered – yes, this is a business.  It is a team.  It is a fledgling league still, and a fledgling team.  Most businesses never make profit in their first 3 to 5 years.  It happens.  Normally, within an organization you should be up front about things – especially to the employee you are going to use as a bartering chip.  But again, many things just don’t add up.

Why be pissed off at someone, who is loyal to your cause and the team and the franchise, when all he wants is to stay there?
Why not tell him straightforward that you have no use for him other than trying to make a trade for money?
Why try to sell him when you are wasting 500k salary on someone you don’t use.  And even less than that on a first round draft pick in 2010 that…again.. YOU DON”T FUCKING USE?
Why treat someone who is a fan favorite with as much respect as we treat any “Philly Villain” when they enter our domain?

Do you have no tact?  No scruples?  Do you not realize this is going to bite you in the fucking ass!?

I get on many fans cases when they bring up the point that this team is only here because of  the fans primarily because we only showed there was a market.  Once the team came, we generally have no more say in the goings on of the team such as personnel.  BUT, the one thing that is never really a point to mention that I damn well agree with, is when there is no faith in the management of said team.  And frankly, this situation has finally come.

So I ask, Peter Nowak – does your ego know no bounds?  Are you so strapped for cash that you, in your “soccer experience” can’t see what is plainly obvious to the common fan?  How do you get off treating someone who gave it all for you like he expects it all without doing anything?

I ask of you Nowak, Hackworth, Sakiewicz – is there not a brain among you?  Do you not know what we as a fan base from Philadelphia could do to you?

I’m certain you’ll come on board with some overblown, piece of shit response to fan outrage saying “It is not like that” and “Media is blowing it out of proportion. Doesn’t know what they are saying.” and all the like, creating more of a PR shit storm separating yourselves from us.  Do you really think that behind your iron curtain of no information and fluff pieces and fake smiles you can really prevent the truth from us?

If your money problems are really that true (considering you’re also getting 3 million a year from Bimbo ($12/4 years, please correct if wrong)) then I hope to god you have a good season, because otherwise, we will hurt you where it’s obvious where you care about.




– Thank you Chris Vito for giving me permission to take quotes from his article…  sorry I took more than I thought I would take.


YSA Report-Featuring the Co-Bloggers of Unholy Union

Dan K. and Nick Y. joined Murph of The Union Dues.  Thanks are owed to Earl Gardner for hosting the 3 of us, and for all of his production work.  We both look forward to being invited back to the YSA Report again in the near future.

Welcome Houston Dynamo

January 28, 2011 Leave a comment

To what, I dont know.

As the MLS have just released today, and anyone with an ear for soccer (basically noone associated with this blog) have heard that the Houston Dynamo are now in the Eastern Conference

Now to refer back to my “To what” comment.  This isn’t news, at least for anyone who truely realizes the errors of American sports concepts with poorly run leagues.  Conferences are set up, normally, to create a diversity and depth to the playoff pictures in other leagues.  4 to 6 teams from each conference enter the playoffs, and play their own people in the playoffs, and come to the inevitable conclusion of “The best of each side” in the final.  Well, that’s not what the MLS does.  To avoid seeming too foreign, they created a 2 conference league, have everyone play eachother the same amount of times, and ultimately give the top 8 teams a playoff picture.  As of now, since they may change this…who knows… the top 2 from each conference are guaranteed in the playoffs.  Ok, much like any other league.  Then there are 4 wild card spots.  How are these spots decided?  Best record overall in the entire league.  Not split by conferences.

As we know, last year’s “Eastern championship” was won by a western team.  If there’s any dumbing down of a sport standings to americanize something, it makes it pretty damn hard to explain why that happened. 

So my welcome to the Houston Dynamo, basically means nothing.  It’s just to say “Hello, you are now considered East in the United States.  Nothing has changed for you.  Move along.”

I would have hoped my most recent post would be one of some substance, but instead, nothing new has been released or changed, or even in sight.

On another note, they actually released the contract with the changes to roster rules and explained them in a little more detail with the re-entry draft process and the home grown player acts… These, in other words, are nothing new.  The one thing that is new is that Canadian teams are require to have at least 3 Canucks involved, and that American players are considered domestic.

Can the next big announcement just be the regular season schedule… I’m getting tired of waiting.