In case you were wondering how Philadelphia Union fans might react to yet another favorite being traded away for seemingly pennies on the dollar, Brotherly Game has your answer: They're upset. As much as they loved Danny Califf for his willingness to interact with fans, there are perfectly legitimate soccer reasons to be upset, too:
By the way, Nowak's rationalization of wanting to make the defense faster, and accompanying plan to play Sheanon Williams at center back is so stupid as to defy ridicule. Williams is one of the best young right backs in the league, and his speed and long throws down the right side make him as close as the Union can claim right now to a dangerous counterattacking player. So...we're going to take him out of a role in which he excels, and put him in a position where his lack of size is going to be a serious handicap? Ray Gaddis has been very good so far this season, but if Williams and whoever fills that hole at fullback are better than Califf and Williams, I will open-mouth kiss Michael Orozco Fiscal. And if you were going to make over the defense, wouldn't it have been better to do so in the offseason?
The Union did receive some amount of allocation in return as well, but the black-ops nature of that money keeps the amount a state secret, which only adds to the frustration.
It's not hard to understand Union fans' frustrations. At the end of last year, the Union were a promising team that had tons of young players that were on the right side of their development. The good news is that most of those young players are still around. The bad news is that they are basically all that's left.
As promising as their young players may be, they lack any kind of guidance. The older players that are around have almost no MLS experience and the only players remaining from the original Union team were all rookies at the time and largely remain inexperienced.
Peter Nowak may have a larger plan, but he's given outsiders absolutely no reason to believe that's the case.