We’re under two weeks to the start of the 2020 MLS season! In this edition of Doop Roundup, we look at the Union’s new deal with stadium sponsor Subaru, the last week of preseason play, and also the reminder that we have a new podcast!
On Tuesday, the Union held a press conference revealing their partnership with Subaru as their new stadium sponsor! This sponsorship is a huge upgrade from the energy providers they had as the sponsors in the past.
It’s clear the Union want to be more mainstream, partnering with Subaru allows for areas of growth for both the Union and Subaru of America.This deal is the first kind that Subaru has ever made, as this is the first time their name will be on a sports stadium. This deal was big enough to warrant facetime form the Union’s Majority owner, Jay Sugarman, and MLS commissioner, Don Garber! The importance of this moment was put into words by Philadelphia Union President, Tim McDermott:
“Today is the start of a historic new chapter for the Philadelphia Union, both with the inauguration of our 2020 season at Subaru Park and in the official beginning of our relationship with Subaru of America, a partner that shares in our vision for a better future for our fans and surrounding community, Subaru of America has consistently exemplified a passionate commitment to the community and bringing people together, which is a core value upon which our club was founded. We are committed to working hand-in-hand to give back and create a better world for our fans and the people of the Greater Philadelphia area.”Tim McDermott, Philadelphia Union President
This partnership looks to be one that will strengthen the greater Philadelphia community as the Union and Subaru have shown they want to use their influence to give back to communities. Thomas J. Doll, President, and CEO, Subaru of America, Inc showed why this is so important for Subaru:
“When organizations unite for the greater good, everyone wins, which is why we at Subaru of America are excited to come together with our local professional soccer team, the Philadelphia Union, under a shared goal to do good and strive for the betterment of our local communities. This partnership extends the reach of our commitments to improve the lives of people in our community. Subaru of America, along with our retailers and the Philadelphia Union, will develop community programs that will directly tie to our Subaru Love Promise initiatives.”Thomas J. Doll, President, and CEO, Subaru of America,
This initiative is great as Subaru is trying to create a sustainable environment, help the underserved, create a culture of caring for all people and sheltered animals alike! The Union partnering with Subaru will help this initiative!
Subaru’s stadium partnership with Philadelphia is already providing stadium updates. A new “state-of-the-art” video board is being installed in the stadium, two new parking lots have been acquired, and the Tunnel Club will be open for the 2020 season! For more takeaways, check out what PSN’s own El Parcero Philly experienced at the stadium naming press conference:
Okay, enough about the stadium name, let’s look at how the club is preparing for the 2020 MLS season!
Who is going to be in the starting 11 when the season kicks off?
This past week the Union played two closed-door preseason scrimmages. The first was a 1-0 loss to FC Cincinnati, and the second was a 2-1 win over Inter Miami. While there is little information out there on the ins, and outs of the match, we have been able to take some things away from them.
No, this has nothing to do about how about the play on the field, this has to do with how the team has lined up in both of the last two preseason matches. The team has lined up in their 4-4-2 diamond shape.
Pryzblyko and Santos paired up top as starting strikers. These two looks to be building off their success in 2019 and should be the two to start the season in a week and a half!
Captain Bedoya has been on the right of the diamond from the start of both matches, and Aaronson and Montiero have been on either the other side of him or at the 10 position to start both matches. Pencil these three in to start the season!
Matej Oravec started against Cincinnati at the six spot, and came off the bench in this role against Miami and scored the game-winner. Cole Turner and Jose Martinez have played in this role as well in the past week, but I feel Oravec has all but sealed up the starting six position to start the season.
Along the backline, Matt Real started at left-back against FC Cincy as Kai Wagner is still injured and Ray Gaddis started at right-back. This was different than what happened against Miami as Gaddis moved to the left and Oliver Mbaizo came in on the right. With the way, the Union is preparing for the season, and a limited explanation of Wagner’s injury, it looks like the Union is looking at picking tow of these three to start the season. I’d assume to see Real on the left and Gaddis on the right.
In the center of the defense, Jack Elliot and Mark McKenzie paired against Cincinnati, while McKenzie and Glesnes paired from the start against Inter Miami. These three could all be potential starters in MLS, so this competition will be heated in this last 1o days of preparation. I think we’ll see Elliot and McKenzie resume their roles from 2019 to start the season.
Andre Blake has started both preseason matches and is the starter he looks to be in great form!
The Union plays two more preseason matches, one today against FC Dallas, and the last on Saturday against DC United!
This mornings match does have a stream, but it is geo-locked to the Philadelphia and Dallas areas; if you can, check out the match here:
There’s one last bit of business to talk about!
The Doop by the River Podcast, Episode 1
If you want to hear our PSN Union team talk about the offseason to fill the time before the start of the season, check out our Doop by the River podcast!
Our first pod is up now! we’ll record new episodes every week to keep you up to date on everything Philadelphia Union!
Be sure to come back to Philly Sports Network for more Philadelphia Union, Union II, and other soccer content!
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Peace out Union fans!
Mandatory Credit: Philadelphia Union