Union right back Keegan Rosenberry has been suspended by manager Jim Curtin for Sunday's season finale against Orlando City due to a tweet Rosenberry posted Sunday afternoon that appeared to complain about his lack of playing time.
Rosenberry, an All-Star and Rookie of the Year runner-up last year, posted a photo of himself seated on the Union's bench at Talen Energy Stadium in Chester, seemingly in a bad mood. Young centerback Richie Marquez was seated near Rosenberry looking contemplative.
Rosenberry posted a few emojis that resembled his and Marquez's poses, then wrote: "(need some caption help)".
The tweet was posted around an hour and a half before kickoff of last Sunday's 3-2 loss at the Chicago Fire, in which Rosenberry did not play.
He has made just 14 appearances this year after playing every minute of every regular season game in 2016, plus 84 in the team's playoff game that followed.
Rosenberry's tweet has since been deleted. A team spokesman confirmed that this was the original version:
"His activity on social media prior to kickoff was inappropriate, and something that won't be tolerated," Curtin said. "A decision that he made, one that he'll be held accountable for. Unprofessional, and also disrespectful to the guys in the locker room. He's a great young player that I think will learn from this, but as professionals, we're held to a standard, and to do that right before kickoff is not something Earnie [Stewart] and I will tolerate."
Rosenberry won't be the only young Union player of consequence who isn't on the field Sunday. Curtin backed up remarks from Bethlehem Steel coach Brendan Burke to the Inquirer and Daily News on Tuesday about Steel getting a full complement of Union prospects and reserves for the team's first ever playoff game, which will take place Friday night at Louisville City.
"I think it's best for a lot of the guys that were there a lot of the season to have the opportunity to win a playoff game on the road," Curtin said.
Curtin specifically named defender Auston Trusty and midfielder Derrick Jones as Union players who will be with Bethlehem.
"While people want to see them on this field [in Chester] for 90 minutes, Earnie and I feel that their trajectory right now is exactly on schedule, and on point to move forward and then affect the first team next year." But this game, for them, is really important in their development. I know that they can go there and get a result, and I think they'll learn from it."
Rosenberry will not be in Bethlehem, though not because of his suspension. MLS players are required to make five appearances with their clubs' USL affiliates in order to be eligible for the playoffs. Rosenberry has not done that.