Sons of Ben

The Sons of Ben is a 501(c) (3) Pennsylvania based non-profit, membership organization.

The Sons of Ben, founded in January 2007, exists to support and develop the Delaware Valley soccer community. Through active, grassroots support, the Sons of Ben helped establish the momentum leading to the creation of the Philadelphia Union of Major League Soccer (MLS) and the Philadelphia Independence of the Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) league. In forging a relationship with Chester City, Delaware County and Pennsylvania State political leaders along with Major League Soccer, the vocal support of the group directly influenced the decision to award Philadelphia with an MLS franchise.

The Sons of Ben have provided a social outlet for soccer supporters to share common interests and be part of a larger community of sports fans in the 4th largest American media market. The organization has grown to include over 5,000 members throughout Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, and around the world. The Sons of Ben have also grown to oversee the Delaware Valley Infantry, a US Soccer supporters group based in Philadelphia region, and the Daughters of Betsy, a Philadelphia Independence (WPS) supporters group.
Charitable and philanthropic efforts have been central to the Sons of Ben since its founding, as evidenced by annual initiatives supporting the Bernardine Center in Chester, PA through its Help Kick Hunger campaign and ongoing efforts to support various other organizations close to the Delaware Valley soccer community.

The coming months will start a new chapter in the organizations noteworthy story with many historical events marking the arrival of the Philadelphia Union, Philadelphia Independence and the Sons of Ben into the national spotlight.

Red Devils 1 - 0 Union

Keith Hickey is a Philadelphia Union correspondent for Goal.com, and a writer for Match Fit USA.  ||  Photo Courtesy: Paul Rudderow via Flickr


They may be the newest top-division club in the world, but the Philadelphia Union held their own against the grand old master of English soccer, Manchester United FC, Wednesday night. Blessed with stars who make more in a week than many Union players earn in an entire year, the "visitors", a team of such stature that they can command a home crowd in any corner of the globe, came out to entertain the forty-four thousand fans who came to see them at Lincoln Financial Field.

Man United began the game at a high tempo, with many of the inexperienced Union players struggling to find their feet in the early minutes. Danny Welbeck and Federico Macheda both went close in the opening, and Welbeck would trouble the Union all night.

Eventually, Philadelphia managed to claw their way back into the game and before too long, were looking just as lethal as as their vaunted opposition. The combination of Danny Mwanga and Sebastien Le Toux, so effective in MLS this season, came close several times. Mwanga especially, impressed, showing a confidence and silky first touch beyond his tender years.

But it was the visitors who took the game, with the effervescent Welbeck using his astonishing pace to latch onto a long pass, dart inside, and put the ball onto the feet of an onrushing Gabriel Obertan in the 76th minute. Obertan slotted coolly past rookie keeper Brian Perk to give Man U the win.

Despite the result, the Union played well enough to earn the plaudits of legendary Man United manager Sir Alex Ferguson, a lift they can take into next Saturday's game against the New England Revolution.

© copyright 2014, Sons of Ben.  Main image by Earl Gardner.