Featured / Union / Union match reports

Philadelphia Union 0-1 Los Angeles Galaxy

Philadelphia Union fell 1-0 to the Los Angeles Galaxy on Saturday night, failing to equalize despite playing most of the second half one man up.

David Beckham set up the game’s lone goal by sending a free kick into the box that Galaxy defender Leonardo headed home in the 33rd minute.

The match proved a hostile one, with referee Paul Ward handing out 10 bookings to the two teams and calling 33 fouls, 21 of which went against the Union. Galaxy midfielder Chris Birchall was sent off with a straight red card in the 53rd minute after a scrap with Union forward Carlos Ruiz, who drew a yellow card of his own in the altercation.

Union forward Jack McInerney was sent off in stoppage time after reacting to a high, studs-up Chad Barrett tackle that sent McInerney tumbling feet over head. A little pushing between the two — VERY little — led to the surprise red for McInerney, but no card for Barrett in a call that surely will leave Philadelphia angry on the trip home.

The Union’s best opportunities came in the 47th and 50th minutes.

In the 47th, Union midfielder Kyle Nakazawa chipped a nice pass into the box that Sebastien Le Toux ran under in the 47th. Le Toux went down after the defense closed in, but no penalty was called.

In the 50th minute, Union left back Jordan Harvey sent a perfect low cross into the box, but Ruiz failed to connect by inches. Right back Sheanon Williams collected the ball and blasted a shot that went wide of the right post.

Birchall was sent off three minutes later, but the Union failed to capitalize. The Union didn’t put a single shot on goal all game and took only four shots total, compared to nine shots for the Galaxy, with four on goal. The Union also didn’t win a single corner kick.

Union goalkeeper Faryd Mondragon stopped two shots from Beckham and nearly gave up a second goal that bounced off the crossbar shortly after halftime.

Union midfielder Keon Daniel saw his first regular season action for the team, coming on at halftime for Danny Mwanga and slotting in at left midfield.

(Photo: File photo from 2010 season)


  1. the game was gross, I’m starting to think Nowak was talking out of his ass last year about complaining about teams not playing to score and fouling to disrupt the game because this year he has basically put 7 defenders on the field, asked LeToux and Mwanga to play out of position and continually given 90 mins to Ruiz who should be working a little harder and coming off at 70.

    Can we all just agree that LeToux is not a wing, he is a striker, Seattle played him as a wing and he sucked and now we are trying to force him into that position and he sucks. Mwanga is also not a wing because he has no clue what to do out there. If the Union want to continue with no outside players, 3 defensive midfielders and 3 strikers who all want to play the same position they might be better served repainting the sidelines at PPL park about 10 years narrower.

    • Dan Walsh says:

      Good point about Le Toux. The Union didn’t need Ruiz. What they needed was a quality outside midfielder. I get the fact that they don’t grow on trees, but now Mwanga is marginalized by Ruiz.

      They miss Justin Mapp. Roger Torres needs to get more time (and better), because he’s a rare creative presence. Most people say Miglioranzi is a class act, but even so, it’s time for him to give way to a creative player at center mid.

      • They miss Shea Salinas, the one guy who could get wide and stretch a defense with his pace.

  2. Ruiz looked horrible again with his fitness and first touch. Mwanga and Ruiz can not be on the field at the same time they are just to similar. Migiloranzi lost his man on the goal and generally had a bad game with stray passes.

  3. Carlos Ruiz has the first touch of a nine year old. Er, I take that back, his first touch is worst than most nine year olds. His petulance is also growing very tiresome.

  4. can we talk about how this team doesn’t know how to pass the ball forward…

  5. PhillyHotSpur says:

    Completely agree w/ all the posts above……….Especially w/ JohnC’s assessment on Nowak’s formation and corresponding line-up.

    Fat Chooch is clearly not the answer up front……yes, he has scored a game winner and his antics have led to two RCs, but he clearly is doing more harm then good out there…..

    Roll w/ a more traditional line up w/ Letoux and DannyW up front……Pair Torres as CAM and Carroll as CDM in the middle and figure out the best options who can man the wings…….Obvs Mapp is one option.

    While our year was up and down last year, at least we saw alot of positive futbol throughout the campaign……….Thru three games this year, we’ve seen the exact opposite……This falls on Nowak….plain and simple.

    0.0 shots on goal at Home depot center even w/ 45 minutes of 11 v 10……Embarrassing effort.

    In the end, will Nowak have the balls to bench Ruiz ? he better for our sake.

  6. I agree with all the comments above. While we all expected Ruiz to do plenty of diving (and he annoyingly has), does anybody else feel like Le Toux has been letting himself fall too easy when he reaches the box?

    Specifically, in the goal-opportunity listed above, I thought Le Toux took a dive that had little chance of being called rather than try to create chaos and possibly reap rewards.

  7. I liked what Keon Daniels brought- namely width, an ability to link the fullback outlet (Harvey) to move the ball upfield thru quick, short, composed passes, and a lot of energy. S. Williams had a rough day- slow, errant passes, showed no desire to stop Juninho on his run and smash off the post. I wondered whether Novak had experimented w Mwanga out wide during preseason. Certainly he didnt look comfortable there. I dont think three up front works. But im not sure sitting Ruiz is the answer.

  8. Le Toux DEFINITELY could’ve stayed up when he took that ball in the box. At worst he would’ve actually been fouled instead of pretending to be.

  9. I liked Daniels play for his unwillingness to let the oposition take the ball away. He shielded the ball from any LA player that got near him and tried to push forward on a night when everyone else seemed content to move backwards. Other than that I can only sight Torres for attemting some actual offensive play. It was a dismal effort. Nowak had better fix this offense or the Union are going to be in trouble.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *