2020 Crystal Balls Predictions

Discussion in 'Philadelphia Union' started by ScottyMac26, Feb 26, 2020.

  1. ScottyMac26

    ScottyMac26 Member+

    Jan 13, 2012
    Philadelphia Union
    Me, I'm a part of your circle of friends
    And we notice you don't come around
    Me, I think it all depends on you
    Touching ground with us but -
    apologies to Edie (she was the OG Lisa Loeb) and the boys, but I haven't been following the U as I had been. Mostly work travel, but I definitely was getting burned out watching this club over the years and after the first season where I didn't attend a single Union match (but did get to a WWC match in PSGs arena), I'm ready to pay attention again. That means a commitment to snarky statements and "Sugarman Out" chants(the piper cub is warming up now).

    So....what the hell is going to happen in this ...checks notes.... 65 team league?

    1. ATL - Arty and crew will spend it and get back to the top. Don't be surprised to see an early season slump due to CCL.
    2. NYCFC - I'd love to buy off that the CL games at RBNY will be some lingering drag, but that home field advantage of playing in the closet that is Yankee Stadium will get them to a home playoff game.
    3. TFC - Jozy. He's annoying. He can also be good. Mostly annoying though.
    4. UNION - Expect the antiCCL seasonal arc of success. Early sprint out to the top, a fanbase believing this is the year, a late summer swoon enough for the conference pack to catch up, a playoff win (yay!) followed by a playoff loss (oh noes!).
    5. CBus - The Crew may be able to permanently borrow "no one likes us and we don't care", as an afterthought in the league, dodged the moving van, theyve got a good little team.
    6. NERevs - Arena may be the most annoying guy in the East, but they've given him a little more to work with, and that's probably enough to get our rivals back to the playoffs.
    7. InterBeckhamUnited - Usually expansion teams struggle, but there's reportedly so much money there it may overcome newbie stupidity.
    8. DCU - I'm kind of a coin flip on these guys. They could be sneaky good. They could also play like every other Ben Olsen team and try to win the league 1-1 draw after another.
    9. MTL - Just always hovering around mediocrity, with just enough flair to make a run at a playoff spot.
    10. RBNY - Yeah, I'm calling it now. This team craters.
    11. CHI - The vast emptiness of Soldier Field beckons. When they get that new arena, call me.
    12. OCSC - Such a weird club, you see them making all the same mistakes the U did early on and they just bumble about. Great stadium and they've got money, this is just incompetence.
    13. FCC - Starting the preseason off with a racial scandal and firing the coach rarely translates into on-field success.

    Go West
    1. LAFC - Kings of the Regular Season Hill
    2. SEA - Cause playoffs are different
    3. RSL - no one is talking about a really good team, no marketing sparkle like the others out west, but they're good.
    4. LAG - MARKETING SPARKLE! Chiccccccharito! More importantly, they've been working on the back line.
    5. Minny - I know right?! But the Drab Grays make a playoff run.
    6. PTFC - RCTID, a first round playoff loss BUT they win the Cascadia Cup, which sometimes seems like all they care about
    7. FCD - The kids are alright, but no one goes.
    8. COL - Insert shrug emoji
    9. SKC - Last year was like the first time they missed the postseason in a decade. We can rag on Vermes driving challenges, but the man can win. Still feels like a piece or two missing, but don't be shocked if they run up to 6th.
    10. SJE - Season ends with Wondo missing an open net from inside the 6
    11. HOU - Honestly, they could be anywhere from 8th-12th. They're just that meh.
    12.Smashville FC - This is a low key fun town. THey'll win some games by just outsweating everyone.
    13. YVR - I used the airport code because I forgot how they abbreviate their team. You won't remember much about them in 2020 either.

    EC Champ - Columnbus
    WC Champ - LAFC

    League Cup Thingy - TeamFromMexico FC
    Best MLS FInisher - Union

    USOC - Atlanta

    Golden Boot - Chicharito
  2. aztec21bas

    aztec21bas BigSoccer Supporter

    Jun 24, 2009
    Mullica Hill, NJ
    Philadelphia Union
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Nice job with this! Welcome back to being interested. So what is your take on the Union beyond your short analysis? I think 4th is probably a solid guess, but could see them anywhere from 4 to 6. Columbus concerns me a bit, they could be the team that snatches a higher spot from the U. Do you think we are over/under last season's 55 pts? My hope is for a similar 16 win season with less losses for maybe 58 pts. My expectation is a small step backward, maybe like 52 pts and a 5th place finish.
  3. jaykoz3

    jaykoz3 Member+

    Dec 25, 2010
    Conshohocken, PA
    Philadelphia Union
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I'll give it a go:


    1.) LAG - Pavon will have a huge season, and the backline has been shored up
    2.) LAX - The backline needs some work, but they will still be at or near the top
    3.) SEA - The core is still there, though they do have to replace some key players
    4.) MNU - The Loons won't be surprising anyone this season. If Opara gets injured......
    5.) POR - Biggest question is where the goals will come from
    6.) COL - The Rapids started to play very well after they fired their coach. This team will be tough to beat and fun to watch with all of their young talent
    7.) FCD - Will still be good, really depends on how much the kids mature this season
    8.) SKC - Pulido will score a lot of goals. Will the aging midfield and backline be able to keep enough goals out though?
    9.) SJE - This team could finish anywhere from 3-10.
    10.) HOU - Tab has his work cut out for him.
    11.) RSL - Young, but lost a lot of talent, and hasn't replaced it yet. Who will score the goals?
    12.) VAN - Will be improved, but still a long ways to go
    13.) NSH - Will be a tough opponent, just not enough goals

    Spots 5-10 will be a battle. The top 4 baring injuries are just more complete teams.


    1.) NYC - Returns nearly everyone. Massive home field advantage. Consistently good every game.
    2.) ATL - FDB has mostly his guys in place now. Pity & Josef cover up a lot of mistakes. Team has some questions, but talent will eventually win out.
    3.) TFC - When Jozy is healthy, this team is a cup contender. Roster is solid
    4.) NER = Probably too high, but Arena can coach, and mask deficiencies. Big questions in Defense and central MF though.
    5.) PHL - Going all in on the press. Will the defense improve? Can Blake bounce back? Will Aaronson take a step forward? If those answers are yes, they can challenge
    6.) CBS - Made a lot of moves. Look good on paper. Where are the goals going to come from? I see a lot of draws.
    7.) NYR - No Robles or BWP. Who will fill the leadership void? Where are the goals going to come from? They will struggle at times
    8.) DCU - Losing Arriola really hurts this team. Otherwise they'd be higher up this list.
    9.) MIA - Lots of money can cover over the expansion holes. Wouldn't be a shock if they make the playoffs
    10.) ORL - They'll be better. Might slip into the playoffs too, just a lot of questions
    11.) MTL - An enigma. Henry makes them interesting. Will the young Argentine be able to replace Piatti?
    12.) FCC - Talent has definitely been upgraded. Off field and coaching turmoil still hang heavy over this organization.
    13.) CHI - Lost a lot of talent, not convinced that they replaced it.

    The top 3 are clearly above the rest. After that places 4-10 are a toss up.

    Supporters Shield: NYC
    EC Champ: NYC
    WC Champ: SEA
    Leagues Cup: Liga MX Team
    Best MLS Finisher: MNU

    Golden Boot: Heber
    ScottyMac26 repped this.
  4. ScottyMac26

    ScottyMac26 Member+

    Jan 13, 2012
    Philadelphia Union
    I think there’s a real risk to regress, but that’s mostly because I don’t believe in the next man up. The talent is a knife edge drop in a few spots. I don’t believe in Santos but I see a lot of folks on twitter penciling him in for a lot of goals. The bench for when the U are down at half is Ilsinho and pray, they need to address that. Where for art thou Wooten? Distribution at the top of the diamond is a 19yo who gets bodied off the ball easily. He’s a baller but he keeps looking for calls he hasn’t earned yet. I just checked and apparently Ray Gaddis is still an inked in starter on this team and everyone’s ok with that. ‍Like wouldn’t it be cool to have a RB who overlaps and threatens to cross a ball into the box?
  5. EdBacon

    EdBacon Member+

    Apr 6, 2015
    Philadelphia Union
    It's basically the exact same team as last year?
  6. ScottyMac26

    ScottyMac26 Member+

    Jan 13, 2012
    Philadelphia Union
    Yes and no.

    Haris, Marco Fabian, Fafa, Auston Trusty, Cory Burke, David Accam (!!!) all departed either during the season or after. Whatever you may think of them, they represented 19 goals and 17 assists. Haris, Trusty and Marco combined for 6500 minutes.

    We always talk about the lag time for new arrivals to adjust. Will Oravec step right in and perform? Maybe? Can Mark McKenzie, he of 24 career starts and a few injuries, grind out 34? Will a full season of Santos/Wooten replace the goals? THe last time Santos scored double digit goals in a season was never.

    5.5 shots per game left the team. Aaronson will need to find some confidence and fire away a lot more. If either Santos or Wooten get hurt, they'll need to consider shifting back to the trademark 4231 because they just don't have the forward/winger depth. You could point to Ngalina, but he's played a grand total of 9 minutes at this level, penciling him in for production seems aspirational.

    All that said, I think they can make 4th, which is more about my doubts for the rest of the conference and they're just good enough.

    As for the starting money lines, I haven't looked deeply if the pricing for the states where sports betting is legal are basically offering appealing hometown discounts. I dont think Vegas thinks the Union are actually favorites, but they may be counting on you to do so.
    drewuke and jaykoz3 repped this.
  7. ScottyMac26

    ScottyMac26 Member+

    Jan 13, 2012
    Philadelphia Union
    The prophecy has come to pass
    DoctorD repped this.
  8. mattylip

    mattylip Member+

    Philadelphia Union
    Jul 22, 2011
    Cherry Hill (127, D)
    Philadelphia Union
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    sentrido repped this.
  9. ScottyMac26

    ScottyMac26 Member+

    Jan 13, 2012
    Philadelphia Union
    Good stuff Matty. I don’t play MLS fantasy but as both a fellow blogger (travel) and I help lead a 240 team fantasy hockey league, I dig writing on the topic and quality analysis.
    Don't take it the wrong way, but you’ve got some typos and verb tense issues in that breakdown.

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