Real Madrid Confirmed to Play Union at Linc in July

Real Madrid Confirmed to Play Union at Linc in July

Exciting news for soccer junkies as Real Madrid has been confirmed to play the Union at Lincoln Financial Field on July 23rd in Philadelphia. The game will be part of Real Madrid's trip to the United States during which they'll play two other matches. [Daily News]

In two seasons of existence, the Union will have played two of the pre-eminent programs in the world—Manchester United last year at the Linc and Real Madrid this summer. Plus, they also play Everton at PPL Park, where they previously hosted Celtic FC.

Adding games midseason puts some more miles on the tires to be sure. The Everton friendly is on Wednesday of that same week (7/20), which begins with a Sunday (7/17) match in New England. And although the Madrid game will be in Philly, it bumps a previously scheduled Union game in Seattle to October 8th.

But looking at the big picture, these are outstanding global opportunities to put your brand, players, and let's be honest, advertisers in a whole new spotlight. With or without their star talent, bringing Real Madrid to Philly is a score for the city as well, continuing the trend we saw in a soccer-filled summer of 2010.

AP Photos, composite by The700Level.com

The Phillies season in one video: 'Phanatic tries to comfort crying baby'

The Phillies season in one video: 'Phanatic tries to comfort crying baby'

What is there to say about the Philadelphia Phillies?

In doing my usual postgame perusal of the Internet after their 7-2 loss on Wednesday night, I visited Phillies.com to see what kind of "highlights" they could have possibly posted from another crushing defeat at the hands of the Colorado Rockies.

Thankfully, the first thing that caught my eye was a video titled, "Phanatic tries to comfort crying baby."

It was not Larry Andersen in the Phanatic's arms. Nor me.

And that's the Phillies season in a nutshell.

"You gotta question the parenting skills here," John Kruk said on the telecast. And he's right! What kind of parent would raise their kid to be a Philly sports fan?!?

The Phillies now have the worst record in all of baseball. They're 4-20 in their last 24 games. It's their worst start to a season since 1960.

Even the Phanatic doesn't have enough popcorn to mask all the pain.

If you want to read about the upbeat approach Pete Mackanin is taking, go give this a gander.

"In a long season, these things sometimes happen," Mackanin told reporters. "I remember Atlanta, the first half last year, was terrible. They had a real good second half. I believe we just need to get something going. We're going to put something together. I believe that."

That makes one of us.

Highly ranked 2018 recruit Brandon Slater verbally commits to Villanova

Highly ranked 2018 recruit Brandon Slater verbally commits to Villanova

The future of Villanova basketball just got brighter.

Brandon Slater, a 6-foot-6 wing and highly touted 2018 recruit, told Scout.com on Wednesday night that he has verbally committed to the Wildcats.

He later made the announcement on Twitter.

Among the 2018 recruiting class, Slater, a product of Paul VI Catholic High School in Fairfax, Virginia, is ranked in the top 30 by Scout.com and top 50 by ESPN.com. He's slated as a four-star talent by both media outlets.

Per ESPN, Slater had offers from Louisville, Maryland, Miami, Syracuse, USC and Virginia Tech. He is Villanova's first commitment for 2018.

"Going up there it just feels like a second home," Slater said, via Evan Daniels of Scout.com. "It gives me a good vibe. It's nothing like all the other schools. I just feel like a Villanova guy. It feels like PVI. It's already home."

Slater and Villanova head coach Jay Wright expressed their excitement on Twitter.