Union Overcome Early Deficit, Earn One Point in Kansas City

After advancing in the CONCACAF Champion’s Cup on Tuesday. The Philadelphia Union traveled out to Kansas City to face Sporting KC. The last time these two clubs met, the match at Subaru Park ended in a 1-1 draw. With both sides looking for their first win of the MLS regular season, the crowd at Children’s Mercy Park in Kansas City, Kansas was loud and ready to see some action. Philadelphia, with a round of 16 matches in Champion’s Cup play around the corner against Pachuca on Tuesday, sat Daniel Gazdag, Julian Carranza, Mikael Uhre, and Jacob Glesnes to start this match. A proper rotation will be necessary for Philadelphia to secure points on the road.

Kicking It Off

Philadelphia started the match very sluggishly and slowly. Many mistakes in the transitional game left Philadelphia reeling. Kansas City nearly took the lead in the 11th minute on a great shot at the top of the box. Fortunately for Philadelphia, the offside flag was raised, negating the goal by KC and keeping the game level at zero. Kansas City would find their way to the advantage. A well-placed goal by Remi Walter in the 19th minute gave Sporting KC a 1-0 lead. Philadelphia would settle down in the back end of the first half. It was capped off by what could have been Quinn Sullivan’s second goal in as many games, but a foul was called on Jesus Bueno for jumping over his defender at the edge of the box. Philadelphia would enter halftime trailing 1-0 on the road.

Union head coach Jim Curtin would stick to his game plan coming out in the second half. He subbed on Kai Wagner, Daniel Gazdag, and Alejandro Bedoya to begin. Philadelphia’s pressure in the attack would increase as play would start, with Sullivan having a shot miss right of goal in the 47th minute. Sullivan would be involved again in the second half. Damion Lowe would find the Union homegrown on a long pass. He would turn off to Gazdag, whose shot would sail just wide.

HC Making Moves

Curtin would then bolster the attack before the hour mark by subbing Mikael Uhre for Chris Donovan. It looked as if, while the remaining seconds of the added time were ticking away, the Union would be walking away empty-handed regarding points and goals. On a last-chance corner from Kai Wagner, Alejandro Bedoya saw the ball fall right to him as he put the shot away to draw Philadelphia level with Sporting Kansas City. The final whistle would blow, with much protest from KC head coach Peter Vermes, as a 1-1 draw.

The Turn Around

Philadelphia turned the match around in the second half to pull a point on the road. Alejandro Bedoya’s late-game heroics showed. The grit this Philadelphia Union side will need to have as they play through this season. Union goalkeeper Oliver Semmle looked a little shaky in the early stages of the match but seemed to find his confidence as he was tested in many different spots throughout the match. Philadelphia won’t have long to rest, though, as they have to now shift their focus to Tuesday’s Champion’s Cup round of 16 match against Pachuca.

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Austin Hamell
Austin Hamell

Austin is the host of The Attacking Third (Tuesday nights at 9 pm). His passion for soccer started in the early 2000s because of his brother and father’s influence. He is a dedicated fan of all Philly sports and also is a fan of gaming.

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