Maurice Edu proud to be back in the states, leading Union

The Philadelphia Union and Maurice Edu are off to a 1-0-1 start and are looking strong early in the MLS season. Credit: Getty Images
The Philadelphia Union and Maurice Edu are off to a 1-0-1 start and are looking strong early in the MLS season. Credit: Getty Images

It seems more often than not that soccer players growing up in the United States are looking to further their careers internationally. Leagues like the Champions League and various Premier League’s seem to hold the biggest and brightest names in soccer who’re playing on the largest stage.

But after having his shot to play under the bright lights for top clubs like the Glasgow Rangers and Stoke City in Europe, defensive midfielder Maurice Edu saw something growing back in his home country.

After a six-year hiatus, he’s back in the MLS and has helped the Union (1-0-1) start off their 2014 campaign on the right foot.

“It’s really good to be back,” said Edu. “When I left I always had the intention and desire to come back at some point to help further soccer’s popularity in America. While I’ve been gone the league has made tremendous strides in terms of growth, the quality of play and in pretty much every other way you can imagine. I’m hoping to add to that growth and I’m excited for this opportunity.”

Edu spent two seasons with Toronto FC before packing his bags for Europe. He was named the MLS Rookie of the Year in 2007. While in Europe, he won two Scottish Premier League Cups with the Glasgow Rangers in 2010 and 2011.

This season, he’s trying to fill the defensive and leadership void left by captain Jeff Parke who was traded by the Union in the offseason.

“Being in a leadership role is something that I’ve welcomed here with the Union and something that I’m excited about moving forward,” said Edu. “I like to be able to lead by example, but I’ve also worked on being more vocal on the pitch and let guys feed off of the experience I have. I do whatever I can to help this team win.”

Edu, whose also registered 45 appearances for the U.S. National Team, thinks this Union team is built for success. He’s been impressed by his teammates in practice.

“I’ve been very impressed with the work ethic and the desire of the guys on this team,” said Edu. “Most guys are in early and doing the things that they need to do to be better players. Things like this are what’s going to make us achieve our goals. On the pitch we’ll be a lot more competitive and prepared from that extra work that’s put in. That’s what makes a successful team.”

The Union next face the Columbus Crew (1-0-0) Saturday night at 6 p.m. The game will be aired on the Comcast Network.


Sierra Leone Ebola patient, recovered from family, dies…

An Ebola patient whose family sparked a nationwide hunt when they forcefully removed her from a treatment center and took her to a traditional healer has died.


VIDEO: Cop reassigned as NYPD investigates alleged head…

An officer alleged to have stomped on a Brooklyn man's head last week had his gun taken away and placed on modified duty.


New York Times calls for legalization of pot

The New York Times editorial board on Saturday endorsed a repeal of the federal ban on marijuana, becoming the largest paper in the nation to back the idea.


Two injured after cable snaps on Ohio amusement…

(Reuters) - A cable on a large swing ride at an Ohio amusement park snapped and struck two riders as the swing was in motion,…


Newport Folk Festival: Photo gallery of 35 moments…

As has been the tradition since Bob Dylan plugged in a bajillion years ago, the Newport Folk Festival embraces more musical genres than its name implies.


MKTO: Behind the bromance

MKTO's Malcolm Kelley and Tony Oller talk about the American Dream tour, Demi Lovato and getting turned down by girls.


James Earl Jones and Rose Byrne head to…

Two-time Tony winner James Earl Jones returns to the New York stage next month as an eccentric grandfather in a revival of the 1930s comedy…


Box office: Scarlett Johansson wins battle of brains…

Scarlett Johansson's "Lucy" handily dispatched with Dwayne Johnson's "Hercules" over the weekend.


Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.


Joe Torre: I'm in Hall of Fame because…

Joe Torre spent 18 years putting together a near Hall of Fame career as a player. But it was the 12 years he spent as…


Yankees GM Brian Cashman breaks down art of…

The action frequently accelerates as the non-waiver trade deadline approaches, as it will on Thursday.

Auto racing

Jeff Gordon captures fifth title at Brickyard 400

Jeff Gordon captures fifth title at Brickyard 400


This Week In Health: Friends share similar DNA,…

Friends share similar DNA, study finds Location: U.S. Study subjects: Nearly 2,000 people Results: When it comes to our social networks, it seems that birds of…


Are liberal arts colleges turning away from the…

Bryn Mawr College, a small women's college located just outside of Philadelphia, announced last week that it would be making standardized tests like the SAT…


Recent grads discover school superintendent plagiarized parts of…

  Two recent high school graduates made a surprising discovery about the commencement speech their school superintendent delivered at their graduation: portions of it was copied…


Feeling stuck? Get out of the entry-level job…

Television and movies may be littered with 20-something characters who seem directionless when it comes to their careers, but author Mary Traina says she finds…