This weekend, Street Soccer USA’s third annual Union Square Cup will take place in San Francisco’s Union Square and a familiar face for Quakes fans will be there showing his support and putting on his own match to back the organization that helps at-risk youth and young adults.
As the National Ambassador for Street Soccer USA, SSUSA, San Jose Earthquakes forward Chris Wondolowski will host the Soccer for Social Change Celebrity Match, sponsored by the San Jose Earthquakes, in conjunction with the Union Square Cup. Fans are invited to attend the match and cheer on the players and coaches as they compete in the friendly match.
From 1-3:30 p.m. on Sunday, an invitation is extended to fans to accompany Wondolowski along with Quakes teammates David Bingham and Tommy Thompson, former Sharks player Owen Nolan, MLS veterans Chris Dangerfield and Tim Hanley as well as local television and radio personalities to cheer on the participating teams. Kickoff is scheduled for 2:15 p.m. and following the match, an autograph session will take place enabling fans to interact with the celebrity guests.
“I am very excited for it,” Wondowlowski said. “It is always fun time. You always get to enjoy some good people and hopefully some good soccer as well.”
Since 2011, Wondolowski has served as the national ambassador for SSUSA, a national program that uses community-based sports programs to help at-risk youth and homeless young adults achieve bigger goals in terms of education and employment. Through programs in 16 U.S. cities, SSUSA enables participants to come together to compete and in the process, gain self-respect and support.
Since its foundation in 2007, Street Soccer USA has helped more than 4,000 people attain housing and services such as substance-abuse rehabilitation and medical care.
The third annual Union Square Cup will also take place Saturday and Sunday in Union Square. In 2015, the tournament saw 64 coed, amateur adult teams compete in four-a-side games. Outstanding players were chosen to represent Street Soccer USA at the Homeless World Cup in Amsterdam last September.
“It’s a great cause,” Wondolowski said. “I love being involved with it and love being able to see the people and the changes that it makes for them day in and day out.”