The Union entered Friday evening's match with some off-the-pitch news, but they looked to get back to their winning ways against DC United. I was lucky enough to be live at Subaru Park for the match coverage!
Harriel, Glesnes, Elliott, Wagner
Bedoya, Martinez, Flach, Gazdag
Pines, Birnbaum, Hines-Ike
Gressel, Skundrich, Durkin, Guediri
First Half Summary
Besides the official transfer of Jack de Vries, the Union made two significant moves to their current roster. Sergio Santos was dealt to Cincy for $300k GAM and another $700k GAM incentives, while Stuart Findlay was sent to Oxford United. Shocking news to say the least in regards to Sergio, and the Union fans, who know this team needs an upgrade in the attack, are waiting for Tanner to make the next move.
The match started with former Union player, Brian Carroll, hitting the drum. The atmosphere was electric to start this match, and despite it being a Friday evening, Subaru Park was nearly filled by the time the first whistle blew.
The Union controlled the ball over the first ten minutes, and their pressure paid off in the 9th! Brujo received the ball at a distance from goal, but he sent an absolutely BEAUTIFUL pass into the box. HIs ball found Ale Bedoya, who some how snuck behind the DC back line. The Captain was patient with his approach and he finished with a wonderful strike passed the keeper. 1-0 Union.
The party was started by Bedoya, but his fellow teammates wanted to join. The Union's next two goals came before the 26th minute. First up, Kai Wagner sent a corner kick toward Jack Elliott, who muffed the volley. Luck was on Philly's side though, as the ball was perfectly placed for a Julian Carranza bicycle. Oh, and by the way, the Union have a $500k GAM purchase option in Julian, per Tom Bogert. Yes, we robbed Miami with the Carranza deal.
Next up, the Union had a chance to make it 3-0, in what was probably the easiest attempt all season. Nathan Harriel made his way to the edge of the DC box, and he was able to cross up the visiting keeper. Nathan had himself a WIDE OPEN goal, but the homegrown unfortunately missed wide left. The crowd groaned in disbelief, as that was a golden chance for Nathan to earn his first MLS goal.
Nathan was picked up by his team soon after. Gazdag had the ball at his feet in the DC box, and he threaded a masterful ball to Leon. Flach cut back with a pass by the goal line, and Julian did just enough to get a touch on the ball and earn a brace.
BUT WAIT, there's more. Another set piece was earned by Philly in the 36th minute. Kai Wagner sent a high cross into the box, but it was just low enough for Bedoya to flick it with his head. The Captain's redirection beat the keeper, and he too now had a brace. I could not believe what I was watching this evening. What a beatdown from Philly.
Just when I thought the half was finally going to come to a close, the Union decided to make it five. I was speaking with Dave Miller and Jose Nunez during the match, and we were chatting about how quiet Uhre had been. Mikael must have heard our chatter, because he would be the next person to score. Gazdag did well to be patient with the ball in attack, and he setup Uhre for an easy move into the box. Mikael went one on one with the DC goalie and he sent a textbook shot into the net. The whistle soon blew, and Philly went into the half with a 5 goal lead. Needless to say, the stadium was in disbelief.
Second Half Summary
The second half started with a bit of a scare. DC had themselves a great chance at net, and a point blank shot caught the face of a diving Blake. The training staff tended to Andre for a few moments, but he remained. Paul Rushing, the training staff member who was given a red card against NYC, was then shown on the big screen. The stadium roared with applause for the new Union hero.
The Union kept themselves quiet until just before the 60th minute. Harriel's cross was hit by a DC defender, but it was able to find the right foot of Uhre. Mikael joined Bedoya and Julian with the brace. Check out the goal below!
The next scoring chance came from a penalty kick. DC had a handball inside the box, and Jose Martinez quickly ran to the ball. He clearly wanted to take the chance, but Julian and Bedoya (both of whom had a brace) convinced Brujo to give Julian the shot. Martinez stormed away, clearly upset, and Carranza took a poor strike at goal. The keeper kept Julian off the board, but not for long...
The Union continued their relentless attack, and a high-sailing pass from the left side of the field found Carranza. Similar to his goal in LA, the Union forward put a left footed shot toward the far corner of the net. Julian earned his hat trick the hard way tonight! I'll say it again, what a steal of a move by Tanner.
The Union used their lead to make a handful of changes. Uhre, Flach, Daniel, Jose, and Bedoya were all replaced by Burke, Craig, Paxten, McGlynn, and Quinn, respectively. A much needed rest for Ale in particular, who has found the fountain of youth this year. Last note here, Craig made his MLS Debut tonight! Well deserved after his great outing for the US Youth National Team. Paxten, Quinn, and McGlynn of course stole the show there, with Paxten earning some hardware along the way.
Philly and their subs did their best to earn the 8th goal, including Carranza who almost had his fourth. Only three minutes of stoppage time were awarded, and the Union closed out the game with a 7-0 beat down of DC United. We've been waiting for a performance like this, but no one could have imagined such a one-sided victory.
- Mike Barrera (mbarrera1323)