Although Marco Fabián hasn’t played a game for the Union in more than two weeks, he hasn’t lacked for things to do.
His red card in his second game and subsequent suspension didn’t stop him from being a full participant in practice sessions, of course, and he even went to Sunday’s Bethlehem Steel game to spend some time with the Union’s prospects.
“I was there to meet all the young [players], the coaches,” Fabián said. “I could enjoy a little of the game, and I stayed inside [the locker room] with the team, with the young players, because I wanted to know everything. I know I am a little old, maybe, right now, but I can say a lot of things and they can learn a little bit from me.”
The 29-year-old Mexican playmaker was quite impressed by what his teammates did without him last weekend, trouncing the Columbus Crew, 3-0. Both teams were shorthanded, but Columbus still had star playmaker Federico Higuaín. The Union’s defense held him to two chances created and zero shots, and the attack was clinical.
“They can take a lot of the ball and really find the space," Fabián said. “Now we need to continue like this, to train really hard and show the same things and much better in the next game.”
That next game will come Saturday, when the Union make their first trip to expansion team FC Cincinnati (7:30 p.m., PHL17). Fabián will be back in the lineup, and said he’ll be ready to step up after a less-than-ideal start to his time in Philadelphia.
“I am really calm, because it’s the start of the season. I know what I can show for the next games, and I feel good,” he said. “I think when I have a rhythm, I can show people who Marco Fabián is, because I know me, and after two or three games, I feel good and I can play really well.”
Fabián might not be the only Union player seeking to make a statement on Saturday. If FIFA finally clears Jamiro Monteiro’s international transfer certificate — and it’s a mystery as to why the governing body hasn’t — the Cape Verdean midfielder could make his debut. A midfield quartet of Monteiro, Brenden Aaronson, Alejandro Bedoya and Fabián could play some attractive soccer.