Through all the ups and downs in the Union’s inaugural season, team unity was never an issue.
In a tight-knit locker room, all the players got along with each other. All the players supported each other. All the players pulled for each other, no matter who was starting.
They still have that same attitude.
Since the regular season concluded, the players have continued to train at the Healthplex in Springfield as well as PPL Park. As the MLS playoffs are ongoing, the Union are looking ahead to next season.
“In this league, a number of teams do this with training after the season,” said midfielder Shea Salinas. “Here, on this club, the guys have stuck together all season. We have been close from the first day. I think we’re all a little disappointed that we didn’t make the playoffs, and we’re already targeting next season for all of us who will still be here. I think that getting along is a major thing. We’re focused on next season and have big plans.”
Getting motivated for training while the playoffs are taking place in other cities is far from easy.
It’s not where the Union want to be. But this is a process and the players are prepared to follow through with each step.
“I think we all knew this was never going to be easy,” said defender Danny Califf. “We were never naïve about our situation, but we all believed we had the talent to make the playoffs in our first season. That confidence won’t change next season. As we’re training now, it’s a good start as we get ready for an exciting second season. I think we’ll be stronger mentally and physically and these training sessions now will only help us as we move forward."
Sebastien Le Toux was laughing and joking with some teammates after a recent training session. That was after showing his patented hustle during a lighthearted scrimmage. His attitude is clearly infectious and always will be.
“We have a great club here with these guys,” Le Toux said. “I am proud to be here, and I’m very excited about next season. We will come back very strong."
“We won eight games and could have won a bunch more,” added Califf. “We hurt ourselves in a number of games. I think with a year’s experience under our belts, we’ll be that much better for it. Those games that got away from us hopefully we’ll be able to get next season. The work for next season starts now.”