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The Philadelphia Independence was an American professional soccer club that was based in the Philadelphia suburb of Chester, Pennsylvania. The team joined Women's Professional Soccer as an expansion team in 2010 and played its home games at West Chester University's John A. Farrell Stadium. The team played at Widener University's Leslie Quick Stadium in 2011. The Women's Professional Soccer league folded on May 18, 2012, after an earlier announcement that the 2012 season would be suspended.

Philadelphia Independence
Philly ind primary.PNG
Full namePhiladelphia Independence
Founded2009
Dissolved2012
GroundLeslie Quick Stadium
Chester, Pennsylvania
Capacity4,500
OwnerTeam Dynamics, LLC
Head CoachPaul Riley
LeagueWomen's Professional Soccer

Contents

HistoryEdit

Women's Professional Soccer formally announced the Philadelphia market as its eighth franchise on March 17, 2009.[1] Two months later, the Independence formally unveiled its name and colors at the Franklin Institute in Center City. The "Independence" name referred to the Declaration of Independence, adopted at Independence Hall on July 4, 1776. The official motto was "We the People", referring to the Preamble to the United States Constitution.[2] The Independence succeeded the former Philadelphia Charge of the defunct Women's United Soccer Association.

2010 seasonEdit

In the inaugural season, the Independence finished the regular season as the league's three seed, then won two playoff games in overtime to advance to the WPS Championship. The Independence defeated Washington Freedom at home in the Quarterfinal, then won at Boston in the WPS Super Semifinal. In the championship, the Independence were defeated by FC Gold Pride.

2011 seasonEdit

In the 2011 season, the Independence finished the regular season as the league's two seed, then won the WPS Super Semifinal 2-0 over the magicJack to advance to the WPS Championship. Goals were scored by Tasha Kai 46' and Amy Rodriguez 81'. The Independence faced the Western New York Flash for the WPS Championship where they lost by penalty shootout 1(5) - 1(4).

Colors and badgeEdit

The Independence's colors were steel grey, alluding to the city’s industrial history; pearl blue, derived from the civic flag of Philadelphia and further symbolizing the city’s blue-collar heritage; and blazing yellow, representing the Swedish immigrants who first came to the city in 1638.[3] The Independence unveiled its brand on July 4, 2009, to commemorate American Independence Day. The primary logo's contour was a stylized keystone, an architectural shape that referred to Pennsylvania's official nickname, "The Keystone State." This nickname alluded to the commonwealth's economic, social, and political relevance in the original Thirteen Colonies. An eighteenth-century war flag, featuring the team's name and motto, is superimposed across the shield.[4]

StadiumEdit

 
Talen Energy Stadium before semi-final game between Philadelphia Independence and magicJack in 2010--the Independence's final home game ever.

For the 2010 season, the club played at West Chester University's John A. Farrell Stadium. For 2011, it played its home games at Widener University's Leslie Quick Stadium in Chester, Pennsylvania. The Independence elected to utilize PPL Park to host playoff games in 2011.[5][6] The Independence practiced and held preseason games at their training home, United Sports, in West Bradford Township, Pennsylvania.

Season Stadium Location Capacity Notes
2010 John A. Farrell Stadium West Chester, Pennsylvania 7,500[7] Regular season home
United Sports West Bradford Township, Pennsylvania 1,200[8] Preseason scrimmages
2011 Leslie Quick Stadium Chester, Pennsylvania 4,000[9] Regular season home
PPL Park 18,500[10] Playoff home
United Sports West Bradford Township, Pennsylvania 1,200[8] Preseason scrimmages

SupportersEdit

Grassroots support was instrumental in bringing top-tier women's professional soccer back to the Philadelphia area. The Philadelphia Independence masterfully cultivated relationships with Philadelphia-area girls' travel soccer teams, offering workshops all over the region with Independence players at reasonable costs, sending emails about games, inviting teams to have a formal relationship with the Independence, having local girls' teams on the field for the teams' introductions at every game, and having all players on the field for an extensive post-game autograph and conversation time after every game. It is unknown, however, if there was a formal grassroots support group for the Independence.

For men's soccer, this backing came in the form of a supporters' association known as the Sons of Ben, named for Founding Father and Philadelphia icon Benjamin Franklin, founded in January 2007. The Sons of Ben petitioned the men's Major League Soccer league to expand to the Philadelphia market until the official expansion announcement of the men's team, later named the Philadelphia Union, was made in January 2008.

PlayersEdit

2012 rosterEdit

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
0   FW Tasha Kai
4   MF Jen Buczkowski
7   DF Leigh Ann Robinson
14   MF Sinead Farrelly
16   DF Kia McNeill
21   FW Verónica Boquete
24   DF Estelle Johnson
17   MF Lori Chalupny
26   MF Hólmfríður Magnúsdóttir
No. Position Player
  FW Lauren Cheney
21   FW Meghan Lenczyk
  MF Katrín Ómarsdóttir
  FW Sarah Hagen (2012 draft pick)
  DF CoCo Goodson (2012 draft pick)
  FW Toni Pressley (2012 draft pick)
  GK Bianca Henninger (2012 draft pick)
  FW Danielle Foxhoven (2012 draft pick)
  FW Jasmyne Spencer (2012 draft pick)

Free agentsEdit

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1   GK Valerie Henderson
3   DF Allison Falk
6   MF Lori Lindsey
8   FW Amy Rodriguez
9   FW Danesha Adams
10   FW Lianne Sanderson
No. Position Player
13   FW Laura del Río
15   DF Nikki Krzysik
17   MF Joanna Lohman
20   FW Gina DiMartino
21   FW Veronica Boquete
22   DF Lauren Barnes
23   GK Nicole Barnhart

Coaching staffEdit

As of April 7, 2009.[11]
Position Name Nationality
Head coach Paul Riley   ENG
Assistant coach Steven Fraser   ENG
Assistant coach Paul Royal   USA
Assistant coach Skip Thorp   USA

Paul Riley, Steven Fraser and Skip Thorp were selected as coaches for the 2010 WPS All-Star game held in Atlanta.[12]

Paul Riley was voted the WPS Coach of the Year in 2010 for his team's third place regular season performance as an expansion franchise and subsequent playoff berth.[13]

Year-by-yearEdit

Year League Regular Season P W D L Pts Playoffs Top Scorer Avg. Attendance
2010 WPS 3rd Place 24 10 10 4 34 Runners-up   Amy Rodriguez (12) 3,050
2011 WPS 2nd Place 24 10 5 9 35 Runners-up   Tasha Kai (9) 2,774

OwnershipEdit

The Philadelphia Independence was owned and operated by David and Linda Halstead. The Halsteads purchased the franchise from WPS in March 2009 and orchestrated the team's success in both 2010 and 2011 seasons with the team's award-winning coach, Paul Riley. With the decision to stop WPS league play in 2012, the Halsteads made the decision that the name, identity, or brand of the Independence would not be affiliated with other professional, minor league, or amateur women's soccer teams.

League suspensionEdit

On January 30, 2012, Women's Professional Soccer announced suspension of the 2012 season, citing several internal organization struggles as the primary cause. Some of these included an ongoing legal battle with an ex-franchise owner and the lack of resources invested into the league.[14][15]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "WPS Welcomes Philadelphia Independence". 19 May 2009. Retrieved 27 February 2018.
  2. ^ Kerith Gabriel (May 16, 2009). "Philly women's team to be called Independence". Philly Daily News. Retrieved May 18, 2009.[dead link]
  3. ^ John George (May 18, 2009). "May 18th Philadelphia women's soccer team to be called the Independence". Philadelphia Business Journal. Retrieved May 18, 2009.
  4. ^ "Philadelphia Independence unveils logo". Philadelphia Business Journal. July 4, 2009. Archived from the original on July 8, 2009. Retrieved July 4, 2009.
  5. ^ "Independence Playoff Tickets On Sale Friday". Archived from the original on 2011-08-21.
  6. ^ Ed Farnsworth (28 July 2011). "Independence at PPL Park?". Philly Soccer Page. Retrieved 25 February 2018.
  7. ^ "John A. Farrell Stadium". www.wcupagoldenrams.com. Retrieved 25 February 2018.
  8. ^ a b "United Sports Facilities | Field #1". www.unitedsports.net. Retrieved 25 February 2018.
  9. ^ "Widener University Pride | Facilities". widenerpride.com. Retrieved 25 February 2018.
  10. ^ "About Talen Energy Stadium". www.philadelphiaunion.com. Retrieved 25 February 2018.
  11. ^ "Coaching Staff". womensprosoccer.com. Archived from the original on 2010-04-12. Retrieved 2010-04-07.
  12. ^ "Abby XI, Marta XI Rosters Selected for 2010 WPS All-Star Game". www.oursportscentral.com. 28 June 2010. Retrieved 25 February 2018.
  13. ^ Marc Narducci (17 September 2010). "Independence's Riley named WPS coach of the year". The Inquirer. Retrieved 25 February 2018.
  14. ^ "WPS suspends 2012 season". ESPN. Retrieved 14 November 2012.
  15. ^ "Suspended season brings uncertainty". ESPN. Retrieved 14 November 2012.

External linksEdit

  Media related to Philadelphia Independence at Wikimedia Commons