Midfielder Derrick Jones and defender Auston Trusty have returned to the Union after competing for the United States in the FIFA U-20 World Cup, and both said the experience was highly beneficial as they resume their Major League Soccer careers.
Jones, 20, played extensively. Trusty, who will turn 19 in August, saw limited action, but he did score in a 6-0 win over New Zealand.
The United States was eliminated Sunday by Venezuela in the quarterfinals, 2-1 in extra time, in the tournament in South Korea.
"I got to play against some great players and it was a great experience," Jones said after a training Thursday.
Jones saw considerable action after midfielder Gedion Zelalem suffered a knee injury that put him out of the tournament in the first U.S. game, a 3-3 draw with Ecuador.
Entering the game in the 34th minute, Jones was pretty much a mainstay. Jones played start to finish in the next two contests, a 1-0 win over Senegal and 1-1 draw with Saudi Arabia. In the Saudi Arabia game he received his second yellow card of the tournament, causing him to sit out the next game, the victory over New Zealand.
He then played the entire game in the quarterfinal loss to Venezuela.
The U.S. played five games, going 2-1-2.
Trusty entered in the 76th minute against New Zealand, the game in which he scored his goal. He also entered in the 120th minute in the quarterfinal. Trusty did not play in the other three games.
This was Trusty's second World Cup - he played for the U-17 team that competed in Chile.
"I took a lot out of this, being here for my second time," Trusty said. ". . . As you get older and become a professional, you are able to enjoy the experience a lot more while performing at the same time."
Union coach Jim Curtin said he got positive feedback about Jones and Trusty on a voicemail from U-20 coach Tab Ramos.
"I know Derrick turned a lot of heads, both in our country and abroad," Curtin said. "Anytime on a big stage like that it is important to show well and I think they represented the Philadelphia Union in a positive manner."
Now it's back to attempting to earn playing time. Jones started the Union's first five games, sat the next one out, and was a reserve in the next three before joining the U.S. team. Trusty has yet to appear in an MLS game, but said he would keep working hard.
- Curtin said that center back Oguchi Onyewu, who had cleared an on-field concussion test after getting hurt in a 2-1 loss Saturday at New York City FC, had a headache the next day and will still go through the concussion protocol.
- Midfielder Warren Creavalle tweaked a hamstring and is likely out for the home U.S. Open Cup game Wednesday with the Harrisburg Islanders
- Danny Barbir, the 19-year-old center back from Macungie, a suburb of Allentown, who was recently released by West Bromwich Albion in England, trained Thursday with the Union. Curtin said not to read anything into it. "This is something where he is trying to stay in shape and he has been around the team a bunch," Curtin said. "He is a good young player, but at this time it is strictly to train."