We’ll get to the goal in a minute here, but let’s talk a bit about this transformation.
Usually offseason plot lines revolve around new players or returning veterans and sure, the Philadelphia Union have that in spades. English number nine who is an aerial threat so far in preseason? Check. Dutch full back prodigy who has family ties to a huge club in England and used to play for AZ? Check. A pair of ex-USMNT members who could be either huge assets or big holes in the roster? Got it. Even a USMNT snub who got to watch the midfielder turned right back who replaced him get burned for a whole game by Jamaica? Yeah, got it here too.
That being said the biggest plot line of the offseason is the name change/25 pound weight loss of Ilson Jr. formally known to us as Ilsinho. We all know what he can do on the ball, and even when he was a bit uhh, husky last year there was flashes of almost unparalleled skill on the ball. Unfortunately for the rest of MLS defenses the Brazilian winger dropped a ton of weight and also found his shot this offseason.
I’ll stop being a tease and just show you the goods.
There you have it folks. Ilson Jr with the goal of the Union preseason so far. Might also be worth mentioning that not one but two forwards (Jay Simpson and CJ Sapong) found the net for the Union in a 3-3 draw today.