The Philadelphia Union's new stadium is still months from completion, but Major League Soccer's newest team already has a sponsor ready to spend major money for stadium naming rights.
The Sports Business Journal is reporting that the Union is set to close a 10-year, $20 million stadium naming rights deal with energy company PPL Corp for rights to the team's new stadium, which will be named PPL Park.
The team's 18,500-seat stadium is expected to be completed by the summer, with the Union set to begin its home schedule at Lincoln Financial Field.
Here are some other stories from Monday that you may or may not have missed:
RED BULLS CLOSE OUT SPAIN TRIP WITH WIN
The New York Red Bulls finished their training camp stint in La Manga, Spain unbeaten after beating Norwegian side Stromsgodset IF, 2-1, in exhibition action on Monday. Finnish trialist Toni Kolehmainen scored the game winner off a feed from unsigned Red Bulls academy product Juan Agudelo.
the victory capped a trip to Spain that included matches against CSKA Moscow (1-1) and Lech Poznan (1-0). Midfielder Dane Richards capped a strong trip with another solid performance.
The Red Bulls return to the United States later this week, and will resume pre-season action on Feb. 25 against Houston in the Walt Disney Pro Soccer Classic in Orlando, Florida.
MORENO, KAMARA SIGN NEW DEALS
D.C. United legend Jaime Moreno and Kansas City Wizards forard Kei Kamara signed new deals with their teams on Monday.
Moreno will look to add to his MLS career-record tally of 131 career goals as well as the league record for most minutes played for one team.
“Jaime is a very important player to our club in many ways and we are excited to have him back with us,” said United General Manager Dave Kasper. “When he is on the field, he makes us a better team, and he makes plays that can change a game.”
Kamara re-signed with the Wizards after spending time trialing in Europe. He will re-join a Wizards attack that struggled to score in 2009. Kamara scored one goal in six matches for KC after being acquired from Houston late in the season. He finished 2009 with six goals in 28 matches.
CHIVAS USA ADDS ROMERO
New Chivas USA head coach Martin Vasquez hasn't wasted much time rebuilding the Goats. On Monday, Chivas USA announced the signing of Salvadoran midfielder Osael Romero. A 23-year-old member of El Salvador's national team, Romero joins Chivas USA on loan from Salvadoran club Vista Hermosa.
Chivas USA acquired the rights to Romero from FC Dallas for an undisclosed allocation. FC Dallas held a discovery claim on Romero.
NEEDHAM SIGNS WITH AUSTIN
Defensive midfielder/Defender Jay Needham spent the past year and a half playing for Norwegian second-division club Alta, but is now returning to the United States. Needham ha signed a three-year deal with the Austin Aztex of the USSF Division 2.
A third-round pick of D.C. United in 2007, Needham was named USL-1 defender of the year in 2007 while with the Puerto Rico Islanders.
The 2009 Soccerlens Awards announced its winners on Monday and I'm proud to announce that readers voted me Best Football Writer. Thank you to all the SBI readers (and ESPN Soccernet readers) who cast votes. It is definitely an honor and a humbling award to win, especially considering the quality writers who do such a great job covering the sport both in North America and England. (And for those wondering, Matt Lawton and Henry Winter would share my vote for Best Football Writer of 2009 while Grant Wahl gets my USA vote in 2009 for all his great work, including 'The Beckham Experiment').
What do you think of these stories? Impressed with Philadelphia's stadium rights deal? Starting to believe the Red Bulls could turn things around in 2010? Glad to see Jaime Moreno coming back for another season?
Share your thoughts below.