John Hackworth wanted to cancel this week's presser, but due to Union law he couldn't avoid it. His night sweats had increased in volume as he was haunted by the chants calling for his head. A mysterious man wielding a pitchfork donned in light blue and gold chased him in his dreams. As Hackworth sat down for the presser, he cringed. Much to his surprise the first question wasn't yelled at him and it wasn't even about the match on Saturday.
California, knows how to party.
The two games at the Home Depot... I'm sorry, the Stubhub Center over the next two weekends posed a travel snafu for Philadelphia. Hackworth was more than happy to admit some good news regarding his team confirming that they would be staying in California in between games to avoid flight mileage. Hackworth remains convinced that the Union can further develop unity on the trip, having forgotten to almost three months into the season.
John Hackworth saw the advantages in playing the LA Galaxy on Sunday, but still views them a tough team to beat. The absences of Landon Donovan and Omar Gonzalez hurt the team, but the Galaxy are still a threat, Hackworth admitted. Also playing into the Union's hands is the match tonight between LA and FC Dallas. A chance to spy on LA is a huge benefit for Hackworth as he needs all the help he can get having just been brutally steamrolled by New England Revolution just a few days ago.
Hackworth went on to talk about the Home Depot...I mean the Stubhub Center (I keep doing that) and how it affects the Union. The large field gives Philadelphia a better chance to establish itself, possibly the reason they were able to win in their previous visit. The game, however, will be without Chaco Maidana. Johnny suggested that the team's newfound depth will cover via the likes of Leo Fernandes, Zach Pfeffer, Sebastien Le Toux, or even Corben "Bone Saw" Bone.
Explaining the Theory of Uniontivity.
Several questions pertained to the struggles of Philadelphia this season and where those questions weren't met with the happy go lucky responses typically issued by Hackworth, they were answered without twitching. The team moved forward from Saturdays scalping looking at the positives not only from their win in Kansas City, but they're performances from earlier in the season. Despite, maybe perhaps in spite, of their results John Hackworth's men believe they are a good team.
Given the pick of the litter, Hackworth was asked to identify the Union's troubles. The problem was labeled as non-tactical, but rather a lack of execution. The team's mentality had wavered in key moments where they needed it most. Individual execution cost the team on chances that could have been prevented had there been proper communication. Hackworth was quick to spin it positively acknowledging that the Union were not happy with the result, but there was a strong belief in the team. The team may be lacking on the field, but they are also lacking locker room issues and any dysfunction as a unit.
The team's support of him was brought up after Danny Cruz's goal against SKC, but Hackworth was stern in his response that the pressure was something to not be focused on. He did not want the team concerned about the pressure on his shoulder and reassured the press that he was as motivated as ever to improve the results of his team.
The Penthouse and the Doghouse
Two players in contrasting positions are Amobi Okugo and Ethan White. On one end of the spectrum Amobi can do no wrong and on the other Ethan doesn't know was right is. With his two recent forays in the midfield, John Hackworth said that questions are being asked as to whether Amobi should move into the midfield for good. His performances received praise but, much like a TSA officer denying entry into a foreign country, John denied Okugo's passage up the pitch. Okugo is needed in the back for stability and I don't think many of us would disagree.
Ethan White was a troubling thing for Hackworth to him consider. When asked about the young center back, John seemed to magically lose control of his speech center looking for the words to describe his situation. One step away from saying White was about as worthless as a wet slice of bread, Hack merely said he was beneath the players ahead of him (Thanks, Sherlock). If his answer continued any longer, with the way his stammer was occurring, I was going to call a speech pathologist.
Summer time, where the weather is fine.
John Hackworth's statement on the summer transfer window was a profound statement. The usually coy Hackworth made no bones about it: The Union NEED a striker. The way it was said really spoke volumes about the struggles of the team and the pressure on our head coach. In a surprisingly human moment from the often content-sounding manager, Hackworth dissected the fact that the team was going out and actively searching for a striker to bring in.
The nature of the question called to explain how the striker would be acquired and Hackworth gave everyone the birds and the bees about the nature of the business. Hackworth really fell short of saying a trade to free up space to acquire a player was imminent, but certainly wanted to prepare the Union faithful about a possible shake up coming in the next few months
- Williams and Okugo were suggested as being paired at center back, and the questioner was given the oral history of the two in the back together by storyteller John Hackworth.
- Maurice Edu was almost given a no-go for the Chivas USA game depending on how USMNT Coach Jurgen Klinsmann decided to name his roster.
- John Hackworth said the word "baffle" in today's presser, much to my delight.
INJURY REPORT: No one! Yay! Celebrate good times come on! There's a party going on right here, a celebration could last throughout the year. So bring your good times! And your laughter too....Ok, I'm sorry I'll stop.