Union II News Roundup: New Captains and a New Signing

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Union, Union II
Mandatory Credit: Philadelphia Union

The MLS Next Pro season kicks off this coming weekend and Union II will be in action against Toronto II at home on Sunday 17th at 3 pm. Marlon LeBlanc’s side will be looking to kick off their campaign with a win and with the announcement of a new signing, and the team’s captain and vice-captain for the 2024 campaign, they look set on making their way to lifting the MLS Next Pro trophy.

Union, Union II
Mandatory Credit: Philadelphia Union

Union II Announce 2024 Team Captains 

On Tuesday, Marlon LeBlanc and Union II announced that midfielder, Kyle Tucker, would serve as the captain of UII for the 2024 season, and defender, Frank Westfield, would serve as the vice-captain of the team during the 2024 season. 

Tucker and Westfield are both locals of Philadelphia and know what it means to be from the city and how the city wants to be represented. They’ll both be able to easily bring in the culture to the team and show off their leadership abilities throughout the season. 

Tucker joined Union II last season and made 12 appearances for Marlon LeBlanc’s side. The 24-year-old midfielder will be looking to have a breakout year in MLS Next Pro, as he showed glimpses of his potential last season. Tucker has enjoyed a good pre-season so far and with the fact he’s one of the oldest in the UII squad, it makes a lot of sense as to why Marlon LeBlanc chose him to be the captain. 

Frank Westfield is a name Union fans will be more familiar with. Frank has been a mainstay in the UII side ever since the first-ever season of MLS Next Pro, he’s been constantly playing for the side, as both a left and right back, and it makes a lot of sense to put him into a leadership role, given his vast experience at this level as an 18-year-old. 

Westfield joined Union’s senior team for their pre-season camp and even scored in a pre-season game during his time with the senior squad. Jim Curtin mentioned how impressed he was with Frank and so, with another impressive year, Frank could find himself fighting for a senior squad place in the future. 

Westfield has come through every single level of the academy in Philadelphia and so he’s one of the most suited and familiar with how Union wants to play. Westfield has impressed me a lot over time, and I wrote more about him as a player last month, during my pieces surrounding the Union’s academy.

Union, Union II
Mandatory Credit: Philadelphia Union

Union II Announce New Signing Giovanny Sequera 

Just days before they start their 2024 MLS Next Pro campaign, Union II announced today, the loan signing of young Venezuelan midfielder Giovanny Sequera from Metropolitanos FC. 

Sequera is a box-to-box midfielder, with great speed and dribbling ability, he’s someone who will bring the ball forward and help transition Union II from defending to attacking as quickly as possible. Sequera is a workhorse too, he’ll always track back and help defensively while helping to hold the high-pressing line that Philly loves to deploy. 

Sequera adds needed midfield depth to Marlon LeBlanc’s side, and in that role of box-to-box to, which is crucial as most of the midfielders Union II has, are all attacking midfielders. Union II also has the option to make the move permanent if Sequera impresses during his time with the team. 

Sequera has played four times for Metropolitanos FC in the top league in Venezuela, and played twice in the Copa Libertadores. Sequera has also represented his country 10 times at the U17 level, with the majority coming in the South American Championship, and some of the others at the 2023 U17’s World Cup, where he registered an assist.

Mandatory Credit: Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire

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Mandatory Credit: Philadelphia Union