Union

Philadelphia Union's new stadium name is a huge upgrade

usa-021820-philadelphia-union-mls-subaru-park.jpg
USA Today Sports Images

Philadelphia Union's new stadium name is a huge upgrade

The Philadelphia Union announced Tuesday a multi-year partnership with Subaru of America, which means Talen Energy Stadium in Chester is now Subaru Park.

I cannot emphasize this enough: what a huge improvement.

Talen Energy Stadium wasn't a miserable name, but it wasn't... good. The sponsor name itself was pretty clunky, and "stadium" is probably my least-favorite designator for a sports arena. Field, park, center (or centre) are all better than "stadium" or "arena", and it's not close.

By switching back from "stadium" to "park", an homage to the original PPL Park name, the Union's home pitch sounds so much more fun. "Let's head to the park for the game" is very inviting. "What a time we'll have down at the park!"

It's good.

Also, "Subaru Park" lends itself to the time-honored tradition of shortening sports arena names. Eagles fans once did it with The Vet and now do it with The Linc; Phillies fans do it with The Bank; Sixers and Flyers fans can either use The Center or The Farg.

Talen Energy Stadium offered no such opportunities, but Subaru Park does. You can call it The Roo, or you can call it The Soob. Both are short, concise, self-contained. Either way, it's fun and good and gives the park an identity.

Between the new field name and the Union's new home kits, 2020 is shaping up to be a very enjoyable season for Philadelphia's soccer fans.

Philadelphia Union player tests positive for COVID-19

usa-021820-philadelphia-union-mls-subaru-park.jpg
USA Today Sports Images

Philadelphia Union player tests positive for COVID-19

A Philadelphia Union player has tested positive for COVID-19, the team announced Wednesday afternoon.

The team did not specify which player tested positive.

The player experienced "mild symptoms", according to the team, and is currently feeling well and is in good spirits. The player has been isolated, according to the team, and no other players have cases or symptoms as of Wednesday.

The Union said the team's medical staff has been in consultation with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as well as local medical officials:

Based upon guidance from Crozer-Keystone Health System medical officials, infectious disease specialists and Major League Soccer health officials, this case does not present a risk to our fans, our most recent opponent, LAFC, or any of the other Union players, staff, or personnel do not need to be tested as the team is outside of the 14-day window where anyone with team related interactions with the player would have reported symptoms. 

The announcement is believed to be the first confirmed case of COVID-19 from a Major League Soccer player. A member of the Seattle Sounders support staff tested positive for COVID-19 in mid-March.

The Union said it will provide more information as it becomes available.

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Flyers, Sixers and Phillies games easily on your device.

Premier League reschedules soccer fan festival in Philly amidst coronavirus concerns

premier-league-nbc-sports-fan-festival.png
NBC Sports/YouTube

Premier League reschedules soccer fan festival in Philly amidst coronavirus concerns

UPDATE, March 12: NBC Sports announced Thursday its Premier League Mornings Live fan festival has been rescheduled for the fall amidst the ongoing coronavirus pandemic:

ORIGINAL STORY, Feb. 24: Soccer fans in Philadelphia are getting as close to the Premier League as they can without hopping on a plane.

NBC Sports announced Monday its Premier League Mornings Live fan festival is coming to Philly on April 4 and April 5, setting up at Dilworth Park for a jam-packed weekend of soccer.

The festival, which will be free for fans to attend, will feature a live broadcast of NBC Sports's Premier League morning show from outside City Hall, meet-and-greets with club mascots, and of course live broadcasts of matches: the weekend features a marquee matchup on Sunday, April 5, between top-of-table Liverpool and second-place Manchester City.

In College GameDay-like fashion, the live broadcasts begin bright and early at 7 a.m. on April 4, and fans are advised to arrive early to guarantee entry. You can RSVP here for your chance at free entry to the fan festivals.

Philly is the third of three Premier League Mornings Live destinations during the 2019-20 campaign, after Austin, Texas and Miami Beach. New York, Washington D.C., and Boston all received the fan festival treatment during the 2018-19 campaign.

"It seems only fitting that we round off our Premier League Mornings Live events for the 2019/20 season by bringing soccer fans together in the city famed for brotherly love, Philadelphia," Premier League chief executive Richard Masters said in a release Monday.

"The event at Dilworth Park will be another exciting chance for NBC Sports and us to bring Premier League action direct to supporters in the US and will be the first time at a Mornings Live Fan Festival where we have hosted an esports final. We hope that this and the other great free activities available to fans will encourage them to come down and get involved."

Soccer fans from across the country will be able to interact with the event by sharing their #MyPLMorning on social media, from wherever they are watching. Select viewer photos will be featured on air throughout the weekend.