Hi Union fans! It’s Video Game Week at SB Nation and I’m here to bring you a Union starting XI made up of video game characters. The lineup I’ll be using will be a diamond 4-4-2. I’ve tried to find a key attribute that each characters shares with their Union counterpart (click on the video game character’s name to see what I mean), I think you’ll see that if this was a real team, it’d be a force to reckon with. Let’s get started.
Goalkeeper: Andre Blake is Link from The Legend of Zelda
Many consider The Legend of Zelda series to be some of the best video games of all time. Link is a classic hero with his sword and shield combo, and every game in the series sees him saving the world. Andre Blake has saved the Union in countless games since they originally drafted in 2014, to be successful in this league, you’re going to need a hero at the keeper position.
Left Back: Kai Wagner is Simon Belmont from Castlevania
The Castlevania series involves Simon Belmont travailing to Count Dracula’s castle to defeat the famous vampire. In Simon’s quest to defeat the Count, he uses many weapons, among them a whip and a cross that he throws at his foes. Compare this to Kai Wagner, he whips crosses into the box to help the Union defeat their foes.
Left Center Back: Jack Elliott is Luigi from Super Mario Bros.
Jack much like Luigi does not get the same praise that his usually more famous/hyped counterpart. Whether that’s compared to his more famous brother Mario, or a Union Homegrown like Mark McKenzie or Auston Trusty, both Jack and Luigi are always right where they need to be, and they’re both someone you can depended on, plus they’re both tall and skinny.
Right Center Back: Jakob Glesnes is Eivor from Assassin's Creed Valhalla
This was my first comparison when I came up with this list. As an Assassin, Eivor’s main weapon is his hidden wrist blade, a weapon that can strike at any moment and always catches the foe off guard. Compare this to Glesnes’s free kick against LAFC, nobody saw that coming either.
Right Back: Ray Gaddis is Pong
Pong, it’s the world’s first video. It’s simple to pick up and play, but despite it’s simplicity, it has stood the test of time. If you and a friend are playing Pong, you’re gonna have a good time. Ray Gaddis holds numerous Union records including games and minutes played, and he’s been around forever, but despite his age he’s held on to his spot in the Union starting lineup, and he’s done a solid job.
Defensive Midfield: Alejandro Bedoya is Mario from Super Mario Bros.
When you think of video games, most people are going to think of Mario from Super Mario Bros. He’s the most famous video game character there is, and he’s stared in countless video games since the ‘80s. When you think of the Union, you think of their captain, Alejandro Bedoya. Much like Mario, who’s been a doctor, a golfer, a race car driver, and even a soccer player himself, Bedoya can do anything the Union needs him to do on the field.
Left Central Midfield: Jamiro Monteiro is Scorpion from Mortal Kombat
Scorpion’s famous catchphrase is “GET OVER HERE!” The Union and their fans this off season were saying “GET OVER HERE!” to Monteiro until he signed with the Union in January.
Right Central Midfield: Brenden Aaronson is Pikachu from Pokemon
Underestimate both at your own risk, while they are both small, they both pack a punch and can destroy before you even know what hits you. Pikechu is also an electric Pokemon, which compares well to Aaronson’s electric runs and passing ability in the Union attack.
Attacking Midfield: Ilsinho is Raiden from Mortal Kombat
Both elder statesmen, both harness the power of electricity. While Ilsinho uses his electric feet to nutmeg and juke past defenders, Raiden can literally shoot lighting from his eyes. He’s also been known to save his friends in crucial moments, just like Ilsinho subbing on at the 60th minute.
Left Striker: Sergio Santos is Sonic from Sonic the Hedgehog
According to this article from MLS.com, Sergio Santos was the forth fastest MLS player last year in terms of top speed when a player makes a run. Speed is the name of the game when it comes to Sonic, so this is a perfect fit.
Right Striker: Kacper Przybylko is B.J. Blazkowicz from Wolfenstein
Blazkowicz has many tools at his disposal when it comes to taking down the Nazi regime in the various Wolfenstein games that he’s appeared in. Pryzylko is just as adapt at using his left, right, and even his head to score goals for the Union. With both men being of Polish background, and both known for their smiles, a more perfect strike combination with Sonic there could not be.
That’s my Union starting XI of video game characters. Got any suggestions of your own, anyone I miss? Leave your thoughts in the comment section.