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Brotherly Game Daily Links: Kai Wagner looks to be sticking with Union despite European interest

Curtin’s press conference, Champions League groups drawn, and more in today’s links

MLS: Philadelphia Union at FC Dallas Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Philadelphia Union News

Pressing Points | Returning to the Fortress
After another big bounce back win against D.C. United, the Boys in Blue return home this weekend to face the Colorado Rapids for the first time since 2019. With only eight matches left, Jim Curtin and his squad look to secure home-field advantage as the playoff race heats up.

It looks like Kai Wagner will stay with the Union for the rest of the season
That doesn’t mean he’ll be here after Sept. 1, when the window for teams in England and other big countries shuts. But while there’s definitely still foreign interest in Wagner, the odds of him leaving before the season ends seem to be decreasing.

Union’s ‘second nature’ chemistry in attack keeps paying off
The Union need a goal per game the rest of the way to break the franchise record for goals scored in a season (58 in 2019). The franchise record for goals per game, though, comes from the 2020 Supporters’ Shield team, which scored 44 in 23 games, an average of 1.91 per. Matching that pace over 34 games would require the Union to score 65 goals, or two per game the rest of the way.

MLS News

LAFC transfer Brian Rodriguez to Club América
Across four seasons, he made 55 league appearances, scoring eight goals and 12 assists in regular season play. For a young player, and for a player who has played effectively three half-seasons and the improvised COVID-ravaged 2020 campaign, those numbers aren’t terrible, but his production largely came in fits and starts, not consistently.

Revolution sign Matt Polster to a three-year extension
Polster arrived in New England from Scottish Premiership-side Rangers on July 8th, 2020. Since joining the Revolution, Polster has appeared in seventy-five matches across MLS, CCL, and US Open Cup contests, where he’s notched four goals and three assists over 5,136 minutes.

Rest of the World News

UCL draw: Robert Lewandowski, Barcelona to meet Bayern Munich in group stage; Erling Haaland returns to face Dortmund
This season’s Champions League group stage will be played over a shorter period — nine weeks rather than typical 12 weeks — due to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, which begins in November.

Arsenal, Man United seeded in Europa League group stage draw
Next year’s final will be held in the Fortuna Arena, in Prague, Czech Republic, with the winners earning a place in the 2023-24 Champions League group stage.