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Philly name celebrates colonial past
by Paul Kennedy, May 12th, 2009 7AM
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[MLS] Philadelphia, MLS's 16th team, will be named the Union. The team name is a reference to the original thirteen colonies, while the colors of navy blue and gold are a throwback to the uniforms of the American Continental Army.

The crest also has roots in American history as the rattlesnake is an allusion to Benjamin Franklin's political cartoons that appeared in several editions of the Pennsylvania Gazette in the 1750s, with thirteen stars also showing along the bottom as another nod to the original colonies.

"We were determined to create an identity that portrays Philadelphia's vital role in the evolution of our nation -- the Union," said Philadelphia Union chief executive officer and operating partner Nick Sakiewicz. "Every element in our crest represents a product of unity. Our fans have proven they possess the type of passion that soccer is known for worldwide, and the culture of our organization will always be to embrace it. There isn't a single better example of the collective strength we are striving to achieve than the inception of the United States of America."

The Union will begin play in 2010 at an 18,500-seat waterfront stadium in suburban Chester. Season tickets officially went on sale today.

"We're pleased to see Major League Soccer add a progressive yet authentic soccer brand with today's unveiling of Philadelphia Union," said MLS Commissioner Don Garber. "We look forward to the club's debut next March and the rivalry with the New York Red Bulls and D.C. United."


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