Although getting permission to show the game wasn't exactly a free kick, Saturday's U.S.-England World Cup match will be telecast at the Philadelphia Union's brand-new Chester stadium as part of an open house for season ticket-holders.

The World Cup governing body, the International Federation of Association Football (FIFA), had concerns about sponsorship issues, said Tom Veit, the Union's president.

But about a month after the Union had applied for permission to televise the game, Veit said today that all the issues had been resolved and that the showing would go on.

Veit said 4,500 to 5,000 season ticket-holders had responded to invitations to attend the open house at PPL Park.

Federation officials did not respond to a request for comment, but their balking at the Union's application wouldn't be surprising, said Wayne McDonnell, a sports-business expert at New York University.

Soccer may be on the perimeter of the U.S. consciousness, but it as at the center of the rest of the sporting world's, and a giant international economic force.

The soccer federation is as protective of the World Cup as the National Football League is of the Super Bowl, said McDonnell, and is particularly sensitive to sponsorship.

"When you're paying billions and billions of dollars for global sponsorship, you're going to protect those right at all costs," said McDonnell.

"They're probably being protective of the people with whom they entered business relationships."

One of the Union's sponsors is Panasonic. The official World Cup sponsor is Sony.

Asked how Union officials dealt with the federation's concerns, Veit said: "We took the sign down."

Contact Anthony R. Wood at 610-313-8210 or twood@phillynews.com