Philadelphia Union today announced that the club will complete its 2011 preseason training in Heraklion, Crete, February 23rd-March 10th, 2011. The second leg of training is sponsored by Colonial Marble & Granite and features matches against Greek Third Division team Hersonisos F.C. and Super League team Ergotelis F.C. "Colonial Marble and Granite is excited to support and play a small part in the growth of professional soccer and the Union in the Philadelphia market," said Nikos Papadopoulos, President of Colonial Marble & Granite. "I truly believe that this team, the organization, PPL Park, and its leadership are on the right track to building a strong foundation for soccer and its fans. We are proud to sponsor the Union's training camp in Greece this season and hope our team brings another amazing year of soccer to fans."
Philadelphia Union will train and play at Pancretan Stadium, home of Ergotelis, F.C. The 26,240 seat stadium is part of a larger sports complex that includes an eight-lane athletic track, an indoor swimming facility and a training center.
"It is our mission to not only become the most admired American soccer brand but also to grow the Philadelphia Union brand on a global level," said Philadelphia Union CEO & Operating Partner Nick Sakiewicz. "Traveling to Europe and training in one of the most historic and picturesque cities in the world will help us to do just that. We are very grateful for Colonial Marble & Granite's and Ergotelis F.C.'s hospitality." The Union have spent the first part of training in Orlando, Fla., posting a 1-1 draw against the U-17 U.S. Men's National Team on February 6th, followed by a 2-0 win against the University of South Florida and a 1-0 victory over University of Central Florida on February 10th and 13th, respectively. The final contest this Saturday pits the Union against USL-Pro club Orlando City S.C. at the Florida Citrus Bowl. Philadelphia Union's Preseason Game Calendar in Crete:
Date Opponent Venue Time 2/28/11 Hersonisos F.C. Pancretan Stadium TBD 3/2/11 Ergotelis F.C. Pancretan Stadium TBD
Philadelphia Union's first game of Major League Soccer's 16th season will take place on March 19 against the Houston Dynamo at Robertson Stadium. PPL Park will re-open its gates on March 26 when the Union host the expansion Vancouver Whitecaps.
(Copyright 2010 Philadelphia Union. Reprinted by permission)