Tag Archive | "Bobby Convey"

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Game #6 Preview: San Jose at Philadelphia

Posted on 29 April 2011 by Breton Bonnette

The Union return to action after a welcomed week off when a trip to Real Salt Lake was rescheduled due to the Royals participation in the CONCACAF Champions League (an unfortunate loss). Sebastien Le Toux and the rest of the squad that was around last season will be looking to one-up the visiting San Jose Earthquakes, a team that had their number last year. Fans will remember the late Arturo Alvarez heartbreaker at PPL Park and this weekend’s DOOP day will hopefully be a time for payback.

San Jose Earthquakes (1-3-2) at Philadelphia Union (3-1-1)
Saturday, April 30, 2011
PPL Park, Chester, PA, 4:00PM, 6abc

Philadelphia Union Projected Starting XI

—————————–Mondragon—————————-

Williams———–Califf—————–Valdes———-Harvey

——————-Miglioranzi————Okugo——————-

Mapp———————————————————-Daniel

———————-Le Toux————–Ruiz———————

DOUBTFUL: MF Gabe Farfan (R little toe dislocation); PROBABLE: DF Jordan Harvey (L hamstring strain), MF Brian Carroll (R hamstring strain), MF Justin Mapp (L hamstring strain)

San Jose Earthquakes Projected Starting XI

——————————–Busch———————————

Hernandez———Opara———-McDonald———-Corrales

——————————-Cronin———————————

Stephenson——-Dawkins——–Wondolowski——–Convey

——————————–Sealy———————————–

OUT: MF Andre Luiz (L knee injury); DOUBTFUL: DF Tim Ward (R hamstring strain); QUESTIONABLE: MF Joey Gjertsen (R groin strain), MF Matt Luzunaris (L hip flexor strain)

Game Notes:

The Union will remember Quakes forward Steven Lenhart. a [a part of the Columbus Crew last year, for his showing at PPL Park. The blonde-fro’ed target forward struck twice with his head to lead Columbus to a victory. The Earthquakes also shared similar success against the Union in 2010. At PPL Park, a last gasp Arturo Alvarez gamewinner stunned Union fans and in the return leg, in San Jose, the Union never really threatened in a 1-0 loss. The good news is – the Union are much improved – and Steven Lenhart will likely play the role of super sub or not play at all.

The Quakes are on a four game winless streak (0-2-2) with their last two games being losses to New York and Chivas USA respectively. A players-only meeting was held as coach Frank Yallop threatened to shake up the line-up. Union fans must remember, however that they’re also a team that came only one win away from reaching the MLS Cup final in 2010 so bad form or not, the Union need to take it to them. 2011’s Earthquakes have conceded the most shots in Major League Soccer so far (91) but it’ll mean nothing if the Union can’t create.

Philadelphia native Bobby Convey is coming off of his best season in Major League Soccer since his return State-side after a spell with Reading in England. He has to regain that 2010 form but you can expect, part of a team hungry to right their wrongs, that he’ll be a big part of things on Saturday. It’s hard to believe the Penn Charter product has worked almost 250 competitive matches over a career spanning 11 years now. He was drafted by DC United in 2000, then becoming the youngest player ever signed by Major League Soccer.

The Flyers will be starting their series with the Boston Bruins at 3:00PM on game day. It shouldn’t affect game day attendance too much but you never know.

Brian Carroll, out the last several games with a right hamstring strain, could see time against San Jose but there is no reason to believe that he will start. Amobi Okugo has played well filling in for the vet and as long as he continues to do so, Carroll can make sure he’s 100% ready to return. There’s also the possibility – though not listed in the injury report – that Stefani Miglioranzi may miss the match with a knock taken in the Union’s draw vs. Seattle.

Kerith Gabriel, over at Philly.com, takes an in-depth look at the Union’s league-leading defense and it’s transformation from leaky to impenetrable in just a season.

In case you missed it, Timmy Howard and Everton FC will be visiting PPL Park in late July. Part of the season ticket package!

YSC Sports and the Philadelphia Union recently hosted the last leg of Sueno MLS and the finalists will be announced on Sunday, May 1st on Republica Deportiva. Over 400 youngsters took part in tryouts, assessed by coaches including Reading United AC and Union Reserve coach Brendan Burke, as they fought for one of five spots to earn a trial and a ticket to the “Final Event” held in Dallas.

Just as the Union were surprised by their week off, affiliate club Harrisburg will have to wait a little while before their 2011 home debut. They were scheduled to take on the Rochester Rhinos but flooding has forced the city of Harrisburg to close down City Island. Rescheduled date to be announced.

Predictions for the scoreline this weekend? If both Miglioranzi and Carroll have to sit this weekend or at least come in off the bench, who would you have start?

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All eyes on Convey in opener

Posted on 18 March 2009 by mdiamond

The post-expansion San Jose Earthquakes open their second season of the new era at home facing the New England Revolution Saturday at Buck Shaw Stadium. With their first year under their belt, the Quakes have heavily focused on shoring up last year’s weaknesses, primarily their offense. (See Quakes season preview Quakes Management Makes Big Bets.)

The strength of last year’s team was their back line, which was stingy giving up goals. San Jose lost outside defender James Riley to Seattle in this year’s expansion draft, but acquired a veteran in Chris Leitch from the Red Bulls to shore up the back corner. The Quakes are the third MLS team for the well-traveled Leitch after flip-flopping dual stints with Columbus and the Metrostars/Red Bulls.

A big unknown will be the impact of Bobby Convey, acquired from England’s Championship side Reading. The American played five years there and was a starter when Reading won the League Championship that earned the team a promotion to the Premier League. Convey also saw international competition playing for the US National squad in all three 2006 World Cup games.

Expectations are high for Convey as his experience playing against the world’s best in arguably the best football league should prove invaluable. The Quake’s fans got a taste of thrilling football when Darren Huckerby arrived from Norwich City midseason last year. Huckerby, too, has both Champions and Premier League experience—14 years worth—and at almost 33 years old, is still in his prime. Every time Huckerby touches the ball, he puts defenders on their heels and turns them around, such is his impact. If Convey, who’s only 25, can bring that kind of penetrating skill, the adversary’s defenses will be overmatched. However, Convey joined the team late and has had limited exhibition minutes. In addition, Coach Frank Yallop has penciled him to play central midfield, a change from his left wing spot that he played with Reading.

The Revs field a formidable side anchored by Shalrie Joseph and Steve Ralston in the midfield and the ever-dangerous Taylor Twellman at forward.

Joseph was voted to the MLS Best XI last year, the third time he’s received the honor. His skill at gaining and controlling the ball makes him the team’s focal point and playmaker.

A hard tackle by the Wizard’s Hercules Gomez ended Steve Ralston’s season with a broken leg last October and his potential contribution to the Revs playoff run. Ralston is the career MLS leader in minutes played (31,600), starts (355) and appearances (358). His contribution to the team goes well beyond his experience and leadership. As a winger in 2008 he tied Twellman for the team lead in goals at eight. Ralston, the team captain, was named the team’s MVP for the season.

Twellman has consistently been among the top scorers in MLS. He needs only one more goal to become the youngest player to reach the 100-goal mark in MLS history. His output would be even higher had he not suffered various injuries throughout his career.

New England advanced as far the Conference semifinals in last year’s playoffs and were eliminated by the Chicago Fire as both Ralston and Twellman were sidelined with injuries. It was the first time in seven years that the Revs had not reached the Conference finals. The Revs are probably the most successful team to never have won a MLS Cup.

On the defensive end, Michael Parkhurst left to play in Denmark’s First Division. Parkhurst had played four years with New England winning multiple honors including the 2005 MLS rookie of the year award and 2007 MLS defender of the year award. He had also earned his first cap with the US National Team just after the Revs 2008 season ended.

The back line still has the solid Chris Albright and Jay Heaps, but with the loss of Parkhurst, big questions remain. Costa Rican national Gabriel Badilla will have to step up in central defense, but he’s unproven. Given that the Revs had the league’s second-worst goals-against record at home last year, their prospects seem to have slipped rather than improved. If the Quake’s revamped offense is going to make an impact this year, the Revs are the right team to open against.

After three MLS Cup final appearances and six straight Eastern Conference Championships this decade, New England look to rebuild this year. Much hinges on whether Twellman, Ralston and the rest of the squad can stay healthy. In their last preseason warm up against the Carolina RailHawks this past Saturday, Twellman, Ralston, Badilla, and Mauricio Castro nursed injuries and didn’t suit up. Presumably they were being particularly cautious and will all be available for the opener. If the Revs come with their full-fledged offense, they will be an early test for the Quake’s begrudging defense.

More interesting will be San Jose’s overhauled attack against New England’s reorganized defenders. With the acquisition of Convey and forward Cam Weaver, expectations for the Quake’s offense are high. Their success or lack of it will set the tone for the side as the season gets underway.

Defense has been the Rev’s Achilles heel, and there’s no reason to believe they’ve solved that dilemma. The Quake’s have the aptitude to score, but they may lack the teamwork that only playing time can provide. It will be the untested versus the unproven at one end of the pitch and big guns versus the entrenched at the other.

Defender Chris Albright will be unavailable for the opener as he was red-carded in the final game of the postseason on November 6 when he was shown a second yellow card for a foul on Chicago’s Cuauhtemoc Blanco.

San Jose injury status:
Probable – Bobby Convey (R – quadriceps strain); Ryan Cochrane (L – ankle tendinitis); Ramiro Corrales (flu-like symptoms); Jason Hernandez (L – calf strain); Ryan Johnson (L – Achilles tendinitis); Chris Leitch (R – knee contusion)

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