News Roundups are posted every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday morning with quick hits on what you may have missed and what is still to come in The Beautiful Game.
Here’s what you may have missed over the weekend and what is still to come, helping to bring you, the fan, up to speed, Ahead of the Game, and most importantly, get you through another Monday morning.
Jim Curtin Inducted Into Villanova’s Varsity Club HoF
On Friday, Philadelphia Union head coach and former Villanova University Men’s Soccer standout Jim Curtin was announced as one of seven inductees into the university’s Varsity Club Hall of Fame Class of 2017.
— Villanova Athletics (@NovaAthletics) March 2, 2018
Curtin, who graduated from Villanova in 2001, played for the Wildcats from 1997-2000. In that time, Curtin received BIG EAST Rookie of the Year honors in 1997 and was a All-Big East selection in both 1997 and 2000.
The Oreland, PA native became the first Wildcat to be drafted to Major League Soccer when he was chosen by the Chicago Fire in the 2001 MLS SuperDraft. Curtin went on to make over 200 appearances for Chicago.
Philadelphia Defeats New England 2-0 in Season, Home Opener
Up two men, the Union defeated the visiting New England Revolution 2-0 Saturday night in their home and season opener. Saturday night marked the beginning of the Union’s Youth Revolution, also.
Anthony Fontana, 18, and Auston Trusty, 19, may not be old enough to legally drink a beer, but on Saturday night they showed a maturity and comfortability beyond their years.
Fontana and Trusty, the Union’s Homegrown duo, certainly looked and played the part on their Union and MLS debuts, grabbing a goal and ensuring a shutout for their hometown club, respectively.
Former Union Defender Signs For Penn FC
On Friday, USL’s newest side Penn FC (formerly Harrisburg City Islanders) announced the signing of former Drexel University and Philadelphia Union center-back Ken Tribbett.
Tribbett, who briefly played for Penn FC (then Harrisburg) in 2015, returns to Pennsylvania’s capital, after spending the last two years playing for the Union and their USL affiliate Bethlehem Steel FC.
Tribbett will join Penn FC for its inaugural season, pending USL and USSF approval.
Major League Soccer
MLS Returns: Houston, Columbus Stun Atlanta, Toronto
On Saturday, the 22nd season of Major League Soccer kicked off with several high-profile matches. And, if you thought the parity in MLS could not grow any more than it already has shown over the years, think again.
First, the Columbus Crew, whose fans are embroiled in a campaign to keep the club from relocating to Austin, Texas, traveled North to Toronto, where they blanked last season’s MLS Champion two to nil.
Shortly after, Wilmer Cabrera’s Houston Dynamo routed visiting Tata Martino’s explosive Atlanta United side, four to nil.
Former Union winger Andrew Wenger was on the scoresheet for Houston, and at one point led the MLS Golden Boot race. You never know quite what to expect from MLS, especially on Opening Day.
LAFC Win First Ever Match in Seattle
MLS’s newest expansion side, LAFC, won their first ever match as a club, defeating Seattle Sounders one to nil at Century Link Field on Sunday.
It was LAFC’s young Designated Player, Diego Rossi, who scored the club’s first ever goal. Rossi finished off a brilliant bit of interplay with Mexican international Carlos Vela by splitting the Seattle backline and curling his shot past Stefan Frei.
LAFC netted its first goal in franchise history, courtesy of Diego Rossi: pic.twitter.com/7tUdvrNUmE
— ESPN (@espn) March 4, 2018
Serie A Matches Postponed
Sunday’s matches were postponed in Italy, after the tragic and sudden death of Fiorentina and Italian international defender Davide Astori.
La Fiorentina profondamente sconvolta si trova costretta a comunicare che e' scomparso il suo capitano Davide Astori, colto da improvviso malore.
Per la terribile e delicata situazione, e soprattutto per rispetto della sua famiglia si fa appello alla sensibilità di tutti. pic.twitter.com/bFGnkReWEC
— ACF Fiorentina (@acffiorentina) March 4, 2018
Astori, 31, was taken to Santa Maria della Misericordia Hospital for an autopsy, which determined that the defender died of a cardiac arrest by natural causes while sleeping in his hotel room before Fiorentina’s match versus Udinese.
Astori’s club confirmed the tragic news Sunday morning, in a statement posted to the club’s website.
Genoa’s match against Cagliari, which was set to kick off at 12:30 P.M. (local time), was postponed after both sides’ players were informed of the news during their respective warm-ups. Players were reportedly shaken leaving the field.
An announcement was made to fans inside the Stadio Luigi Ferraris explaining the postponement and a picture of Astori was applauded as it was placed on the big screens inside the stadium.
Rest in Peace, Davide.
Messi Scores 600th Goal in Win Over Atletico
Lionel Messi bagged his 600th career goal for FC Barcelona, in a vital top of the table clash against rival Atletico Madrid on Sunday.
— beIN SPORTS USA (@beINSPORTSUSA) March 4, 2018
The Argentine scored a sensational free-kick past Atletico’s Jan Oblak in the 26th minute, which helped Messi reach his latest milestone and distance the Blaugrana from Atleti at the top of La Liga.
Barcelona currently sit eight points clear of second place Atletico.
McTominay Chooses Scotland Over England
Sources tell ESPN FC that highly touted Manchester United midfielder Scott McTominay has chosen to represent Scotland, rather than England, at the international level.
According to sources, the English Football Association, who has held talks with the 21-year-old’s representatives for several months, attempted to beat Scotland to McTominay. Sources say the English FA was considering calling up the United midfielder for next month’s U-21 internationals against Romania and Ukraine.
McTominay has been a revelation for the Red Devils this season, having started each of United’s last three matches and made an appearances in 16 matches in all competitions.
Thanks for reading Monday’s News Roundup. Check back here, on Wednesday morning, for the latest happening in The Beautiful Game. Cheers.