Union match reports

Match Report: Philadelphia Union 2-2 FC Dallas

Photo: Paul Rudderow

FC Dallas scored a stoppage time goal while playing a man down to earn a late 2-2 draw Saturday against Philadelphia Union.

Aaron Wheeler looked to have snatched all three points for the home side with his 87th minute goal, but Blas Perez scored in the 7th minute of injury time after having a seemingly good goal waved off only minutes before.

Dallas opened strongly against a Union side that threw four attackers forward, conceding space to speedy wingers Jackson and Fabian Castillo.

Fullbacks Sheanon Williams and Ray Gaddis brought the Union into the game with their physical play, and the Union struck first when Amobi Okugo headed home a long throw from Williams in the 20th minute. They did not hold the lead for long though, with Walker Zimmerman heading home the equalizer four minutes later.

From there, both sides looked to find an advantage. In the 68th minute, referee Allen Chapman handed it to the Union when he sent off Je-Vaughn Watson for his second caution after he dove in the box. Despite the man advantage, the Union failed to create clear-cut chances until Wheeler nodded home a well-struck delivery from Williams in the 87th minute.

Dallas nearly equalized early in stoppage time when Jeff Parke’s mistimed leap sent his header back toward his own goal. Perez pounced and easily beat MacMath. The ball appeared to cross the line before Williams’ clearance, but no goal was awarded.

Still, Perez would have the final word in the 97th minute, when he made the most of a goal mouth scramble to head home the late equalizer after MacMath spilled the ball.

First half

With Keon Daniel away on international duty, Union manager John Hackworth made only one change to the side that demolished the Red Bulls a week ago. Michael Farfan joined Brian Carroll in center midfield, with Sebastien Le Toux and Danny Cruz out wide.

Farfan’s quick move nearly had the Union in behind in the 2nd minute, but Fabian Castillo dragged down Farfanand earned the first of nine cautions issued by Chapman.

Dallas quickly found their legs and challenged the Union’s back line, meeting little resistance through the midfield. First Watson and then Castillo got behind Okugo, though the Union defender recovered well to deflect the latter’s shot away from goal.

But with Dallas lacking quality in their final ball, the Union began to create chances of their own. In the 13th minute, the Union broke on the counterattack with Jack McInerney sending Le Toux up the wing. Finding Conor Casey roaring in from the left, Le Toux ultimately had his tight angle shot saved after Casey failed to get a shot off and returned the ball.

Next it was McInerney who got in behind, though he could not direct his first time volley of Farfan’s service on target. McInerney, playing in his final match before joining the US National Team for the Gold Cup, continued his set up play, exchanging passes with Casey before former Union midfielder Andrew Jacobson slid the ball out of the field of play.

On the ensuing throw, Williams launched the ball into the box where Okugo beat his mark and powered a header passed Raul Fernandez. But the lead was short-lived. Four minutes later, rookie Walker Zimmerman out-muscled Gaddis to nod Michel’s delivery inside the back post.

With both teams pressing high and foregoing the midfield in favor of direct, long balls, play went end to end. Williams nearly delivered another assist in the 36th minute, but his cross just eluded both McInerney and Casey.

While teams were happy to play for the half time whistle, both Jackson and Watson earned yellow cards of their own before it blew.

Second half

The Union started brighter in the second half, with Carroll sending Cruz up the left flank in the 49th minute. Casey arrived in the box to receive the cutback but was unable to hit the ball first time and skewed a weak effort at Fernandez.

David Ferreira entered the match for Jackson in the 56th minute, as FC Dallas head coach Schellas Hyndman looked to take over the center of the park. Minutes later, Le Toux nearly set the table for the Union to grab the lead. Picking off a soft back pass from Castillo, Le Toux skipped past Michel into the box. There he found Casey, but the big striker saw his shot deflected wide of the near post.

In the 68th minute, Dallas looked to have caught the Union out when Ferreira’s quick ball sent Watson one-on-one with Okugo at the edge of the box. But as Watson drove to the net, he threw himself to the turf. Okugo had not extended his foot in the challenge and it was an easy decision for Chapman who showed Watson his second yellow, sending him to the locker room.

Antoine Hoppenot entered in the 69th minute as Hackworth looked to inject venom into the Union attack. But with little midfield play to speak of, the Union were forced to settle for half chances as they ran at their defenders.

After going to the ground twice in close succession, Hoppenot became the second player booked for diving in the 78th minute. In the 84th minute, he nearly had an opportunity to atone for his transgression, but when Le Toux got in behind the Dallas defense, his pass was well behind Hoppenot’s run.

The Union would find their breakthrough in the 87th minute. Farfan picked out Williams’ run up the right wing, allowing the fullback time to to pick out the storming run of substitute Aaron Wheeler, who found separation from Zimmerman and buried his header home for the go ahead goal.

Three points appeared secure but Dallas almost tied the match early what was announced to be five minutes of stoppage time. Misjudging Jair Benitez cross, Parke headed his clearance back towards his own goal. Catching Gaddis unaware, Perez stole in behind the fullback, before beating MacMath. The goal seemed certain, but Williams arrived to clear off the line at the final moment, sparking remonstrations from Dallas players who rightly felt the goal was good.

Using his last substitute to bring on veteran Chris Albight, Hackworth hoped to finally kill off Dallas’ hope of a fightback. But it was Albright’s heavy challenge on Ferreira that set up a dangerous free kick in the 7th minute of added time.

Michel launched the free kick into the box where MacMath arrived for the Union. But the Union keeper failed to hold the ball under pressure from London Woodberry, spilling it in the box. While MacMath attempted to recover, Ferreira reacted quickest, flicking the ball over the keeper to Perez who nodded home, stealing the Union’s momentum as they head onto a tough road trip that begins with Real Salt Lake on Wednesday followed by Houston Dynamo on Saturday.

Philadelphia Union
Zac MacMath; Sheanon Williams, Amobi Okugo, Jeff Parke, Ray Gaddis; Sebastien Le Toux (Chris Albright ’90), Michael Farfan, Brian Carroll, Danny Cruz (Antoine Hoppenot ’70); Jack McInerney, Conor Casey (Aaron Wheeler ’79)
Unused substitutes: Chris Konopka, Matt Kassel, Leo Fernandes, Roger Torres

FC Dallas
Raul Fernandez; Michel, Matt Hedges, Walker Zimmerman, Jair Benitez; Jackson (David Ferreira ’56), Andrew Jacobson, Je-Vaughn Watson, Fabian Castillo (Bobby Warshaw ’62); Blas Perez, Kenny Cooper (London Woodberry ’85)
Unused substitutes: Chris Seitz, Ramon Nunez, Stephen Keel, Eric Hassli

Scoring Summary
20 – PHI: Okugo (Williams)
24 – FCD: Zimmerman (Michel)
87 – PHI: Wheeler (Williams)
97 – FCD: Perez (Ferreira)

Discipline Summary

2 – FCD: Castillo (caution)
37 – FCD: Jackson (caution)
45 – FCD: Watson (caution)
55 – PHI: Carroll (caution)
68 – FCD: Watson (caution + ejection)
76 – PHI: Casey (caution)
78 – PHI: Hoppenot (caution)
90 – FCD: Perez (caution)
90 – PHI: Albright (caution)

Referee: Allen Chapman
Attendance: 18,212

Philadelphia Union FC Dallas
12 Attempts on Goal 13
5 Shots on Target 6
3 Shots off Target 3
4 Blocked Shots 4
5 Corner Kicks 5
13 Fouls 13
16 Open Play Crosses 8
4 Offsides 2
4 First Yellow Cards 3
0 Second Yellow Cards 1
0 Red Cards 1
55 Duels Won 44
55% Duels Won % 44%
370 Total Pass 348
75% Passing Accuracy % 74%
51.4% Possession 48.6%

97 Comments

  1. This team sucks sooooooooooo I just don’t know anymore I really don’t.

    – For everyone who thought Ray Gaddis is better than Sheanon Williams here is your humble pie. Let me know how it tastes.

    – The Union have lived a charmed life this season with timely goals, teams coming in on short rest and or depleted lineups. When they got what I considered a sketchy red card I thought this was the case. When the refs missed an obvious goal I KNEW this was the case. So I leave it to you was this tie evidence of their charmed existence or proof their luck is running out?
    I leave it you you, dear reader to decide.

    – We officially have a Zac Macmath problem. I like him. I think he has a future in the MLS but the Union have botched his development to such a degree that if he was injected with a combination of cheetah pheromones and the bone marrow of the greatest goalies of all time and he gained the ability to control the box and command the back line, would his teammates even listen at this point?
    I think he needs to sit in all honesty I don’t think his confidence could get any worse.

    • and Zac solely to blame on any of those goals plenty yo go around.

      • The Dallas goal no call that went over the line was 100% Gaddis’ fault. He has NO IDEA IN THE WORLD that the FC Dallas player was behind him. Kid has NO AWARENESS whatsoever on the field.
        It’s a joke we continue to play him at LB.

      • Gaddis had a rough day. He had a lot to do with the first goal too.

      • Southside Johnny says:

        Ray is steadily improving, but not fast enough. He makes a few big plays, but he offsets them with huge screw-ups.

      • No. Zac is solely to blame on these goals. He should be better at setting up defense on set pieces and he continues to be a china doll when contesting the ball in the air. he needs to go.

      • um… no

  2. If MacMath punches that ball instead of trying to catch it the Union walk away with three points. Dude needs to ride the pine hard once Nikolov is in the fold.

    • kingkowboys says:

      Agree. He should be punching that ball all the way. He should be the one slamming into the back of the FCD player, not getting muscled off the catch. He’s not aggressive enough in the box to be a good keeper at this point. It’s his biggest weakness.

  3. Fair result.
    I will refer to this game simply as the Sheanon Game.
    A Dallas player was clearly offside for that final free kick.
    Likelihood of Wheeler playing some in the next few games?
    Seba, I love you. Please take more shots.

  4. Well, Thor looked pretty good, again. Cant believe Hack wants to turn him into a center back. Maybe he could go up top when Jackmac is gone? With him and Casey and Le Toux putting in crosses, that’d be pretty sweet.

  5. Chris Albright needs to be cut immediately. There is no need for him to ever be on the pitch again! Macmath should be benched for the rest of the season, lets be honest, he’s awful. He looks like he’s aged 20 years and he clearly needs time off. They should start by letting him sleep for a week, that kid looks BAD! If the game ended 10 minutes earlier we’d all have a different view, but frankly they should’ve lost, and that’s terrible being a man up! Has anyone else thought Hackworth’s plan is to have Danny Cruz draw yellow cards on his opponent? He’s got the touch of a brick wall and cant pass, but he gets fouls!!!!!!!!!

    • I disagree. He isn’t a starter or even a usual sub. But he is depth for now. Was it a bad tackle. Yes. Will he likely go when fabinho comes. probably. At least off the 18. Though when a guy play 20 minutes a year sometimes he’s over zealous. I think that’s wht that is. Also has anyone ever noticed how much community service he does for the club and community. The guy is at Everything so I will hold off on criticizing him too greatly given his circumstance on the club. He didn’t cost us the game. Our inability to find the corner, connect passes and possess the ball did.

      • Southside Johnny says:

        So give him a coaching job.

      • When was the last time community service got a team to the playoffs? Fans don’t come out to see a player who is a “pillar of the community”, they come to see great play, entertaining football, and ideally wins. Albright brings none of those things anymore. That was a “we won the game now let’s give Albright his 2 minutes” move and it completely backfired. If he isn’t a starter or sub then WHY is he even collecting a paycheck!

      • Maybe read my comment again and maybe we should give him a coaching job. My point was we don’t have depth yet. He is our defensive sub late in the game and our only depth at center back if sheanon is playing right back. He plays very infrequently and was it a bad choice to bring him in maybe but that’s noth his fault its hacks. My point was he does what he’s asked without complaint and if everyone else on the field does their job he doesn’t even need to make a tackle as the ball is possessed by us or in their corner. My comment was never that he isn’t at fault or that community service makes up for on the field mistakes but no one should be blaming him for that outcome above Farfan, Macmath, Gaddis, BC, hoppenot etc. by most of your criteria not me you need another team. Maybe Barcelona.

      • No the problem with Albright is that we got him instead of defensive depth. His existence on this team irks me. At a time over a year ago when we the fans were asking for depth they chose a mascot instead of an actual viable option at defense. So yea its not his fault, but he should have been retired at the end of this season and joined the coaching staff and not put out there like he has any business being there.
        And yes his yellow card lead directly to the free kick that scored the tying goal. So he shares some of the blame. I say 33% blame for that goal.

      • So Matt, because I’d like to see a full 90 minutes of great play from my team (founding member pal) the obvious choice would be to only be a fan of Barcelona? If you were sitting in the stands at Camp Nou you could clearly see Albright should retire. Every time he plays (which is so infrequently) he’s been burned badly. I’m sorry if I’ve insulted the card carrying members of the Chris Albright fan club, but you’ve got to stop drinking the Kool-Aid…besides aren’t these forums to voice our opinions when our team screws up 3 points?!

    • Dan Walsh says:

      One foul did not cost the Union the game.

    • kingkowboys says:

      You know he’s on the team so that he didn’t sign on a team somewhere else and he coaches the Union Academy. That’s part of the deal to keep him in Philly as a youth coach. He’s also the only defender outside of our starting 4 (not including the loanees such as Jordan).

  6. Also can we stop calling Hoppenot the super sub. He was awful today, negated a lot of good work. He’s starting to look out of his league next to the rest of the forwards.

    • But he brings in the female fans! At least it seemed that way looking over into 103 today…

    • It’s not Hoppenot’s fault that Hackworth used him wrong yesterday. There’s just no way he should’ve been the player to come on for Cruz. Up a man, that spot called for Fernandes. (I’d say Torres, but we all know better.)

      I would’ve loved to see what a creative mid could’ve done there, with the extra time and space.

      • Or bring him on for Casey, he was productive but looked tired when Hoppenot came in, should have been subbed out

      • John Ling says:

        I believe Cruz was hurting at the time, and so had to be the one to come off. Sure, I think Hoppenot for Casey would’ve been a good move. The problem is that Cruz had to come out and hack decided to replace him with a forward.
        .
        Up a man and that late in the match, I would have loved to see a creative type come in for Cruz. Again, Torres would’ve been great, but we all know he’s Hack’s whipping boy these days so that would leave Fernandes.
        .
        Now, I agree that Casey looked gassed at that point, too. So maybe the best move Hack could’ve made there was a double sub – Hoppenot for Casey and Fernandes for Cruz. That changes the dynamic of the game, and puts speed and creativity on the field – something that likely would have done well against a tired Dallas team that was playing down a man.
        .
        Hoppenot does his job fairly well. The problem is that Hack always uses him as the first sub, even when the situation doesn’t call for it.

      • Steve L. says:

        I 100% agree with you on this. Even if hacks only thought was for speed and hussel on the wing (which Hoppenot does) which I’m not saying I agree with you replace both guys at the same time, Hoppenot for Cruz and wheeler for Casey. That way you get both tired/hurt players off the field. I’ve said it before, hack has a set sub system no matter what the flow chart says.

  7. If we ever release MacMath, can I request that instead of simply invalidating his contract, we instead fire him out of a cannon into the sun? I think I need the catharsis at this point.

  8. I am surprised no one has mentioned farfan. To me he looked to be the worst player on the pitch. Appeared totally out of his depth at CAM. Made everyone’s job harder than needed. Was he the only one no but he added almost nothing and even when he did put a ball in a dangerous area it wasn’t really dangerous. Ray and sheanon had more creation and ball movement. The Allstar farfan is lost. Someone put out an APB.

    • There was a lot of bad to go around. He was particularly bad. But that’s what I’ve come to expect from him.

    • It’s the lesser of 2 evils, Farfan or Keon. Since it was nice to not see Keon the play killer, I think I gave Farfan a pass, but your 100% right. He’s a shell of himself, or maybe this is the real thing and he was just overachieving?

      • We could play Torres. For what Keon and farfan give us at times I am not sure we are worse off with trying that. I think hack had an opportunity yesterday to sub out a struggling farfan for Torres. Not saying he is clearly better but I am not sure he’s clearly worse.

      • John Ling says:

        Who is this Torres guy?

      • He’s only a myth spoken of on the breeze. Though I hear tell he can be spotted on the sideline if one looks hard.

      • Its not so hard if you angle your head 80 degrees downward

  9. Andy Muenz says:

    I think people are being overcritical of both MacMath and Albright. The pass just before the Albright foul was horrible and basically setup Albright to commit the foul. Why were the Union playing the ball in the center of the pitch rather than up the sides at that point? As far as MacMath goes, yes, he could have punched the ball rather than try to catch it. But whose to say it wouldn’t have gone straight to a Dallas player who would have played it in similarly with MacMath still on the ground after getting taken out? On the other hand, if he catches the ball successfully, the game is OVER.

    • there is a lot of coulda woulda shoulda at a moment like this but if you look at the big picture I think at this point and time he needs to sit. No he doesn’t suck and no he isn’t the worst goalkeeper ever and no he doesn’t deserve to be shot into the sun. But I think his confidence is shot and I think his teams confidence in him is pretty low.

      But up until this point I think the Union have botched his development. I think if he sits and learns from/takes job back from a veteran like Oka Nikolov he can come back focused and with recharged batteries.

      Chris Albrite on the other hand is pretty much where my rationality about this team ends.

      • Southside Johnny says:

        Still say he’s not the same player since the concussion. Sadly, I’m not sure the bench and a mentor will help.

      • Agree with sieve here, I understand concussion concerns but dude is still 21. Thats young in pretty much every single sport in the world. Give him the rest of the season off, let him learn behind a real professional GK, and I don’t see any reason why it won’t only help Zac.
        We need to do to Zac what Chicago/DC did to Hamid/Johnson last yaer.

      • No. Zac sucks pretty bad this season… How many times have we seen him go into the air with hesitation and fail to catch the ball. hes horrendous and lacks confidence.

      • The Black Hand says:

        Outrageous excuse making, in regards to MacMath. Bottom line…if he were a better keeper, we would have three points. Awful goalkeeping display, on the equalizer. Weak challenge on the first. Not sure how you can defend that quality of play. Bring on Nikolai Volkov!!

      • Who the hell is making excuses for him. Dude should sit. I said so. I am just not equating an inexperienced but talented goalkeeper, thrown under the bus by his team as THE WORSE GOALKEEPER EVER!!!!!!!!! HE SUCKS!!!!!!! SHOOT HIM OUT OF A CANNON!!!!!!!!! EAWWRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!

    • 100% right! With 18 people in the box you have to punch it, but once you make the decision to catch it you have to clear out anyone in your way and make the catch. Two bad decisions on the same play by MacMath cost us the win

    • every Dallas player was in the box except the kick taker . . . if he punches it, there is no possible way for it to go to a Dallas player unless he completely misses it or he hits it 30 yards back directly from where it came. Horrible decision, and sadly not unexpected from MacMath. He’s not an A level goalie, and definitely not worth the $170K they are going to have to pay him next year.

    • kingkowboys says:

      Except he can’t catch in traffic! Man needs to know his limitations.

    • kingkowboys says:

      Albright compounded a mistake with another mistake. No reason to foul there he hustled enough to slow down the FCD player, wait for help, and contain the play. Situational awareness should tell you not to give up a free kick in the middle of the pitch like that in stoppage time. He turned a minimal opportunity for FCD into a golden opportunity and they scrapped to take advantage.

  10. So, when is Nikolov getting here?

  11. Jaap Stam says:

    MacMath is awful. He lost the game for us. Period. Seba is taking the assist title a little too seriously- SHOOT!!! The 2nd half was mostly pitiful. We were a man up and sputtered our way to the final whistle. Only positive: Aaron Wheeler looks great. Nice protege for Connor Casey to groom. Valuable minutes for Thor while Jack is away? I hope so. The dude can ball!

    I guess a point versus Dallas ain’t the end of the world, but MacMath had 3 points just a fisted ball away and F’d it up. Mind cramp. Damn shame!

  12. Macmath’s weaknesses were no different yesterday than they’ve been all season or last year. After so many of the same kind of weak goals on free kicks, I blame Hack for the Groundhog Day treatment.

    More troubling long term is the lack of any offensive threat out of central midfield. For as much as Jack has improved, Farfan seems to have regressed. He seems to have lost a gear and is no threat to dribble anyone, plus he is too slow in his decision-making.

    Plus, I know Carroll is supposed to have mostly defensive responsibilities, but it’s clear that other teams view him as no threat to make a killer pass or put a shot on goal from outside the area. He is constantly left open 25 yards out and even his own teammates seem reluctant to give him the ball there.

    We can bitch all we want about goalkeeping, but it’s the lack of central midfield play that is keeping this team down.

    • Southside Johnny says:

      Obviously we have no attacking help in center midfield, but we are scoring enough goals to win more games with solid defense.

  13. Just to amplify my last comment. Look at how the game changed when Dallas brought Farreira in. His ability to control the ball under pressure and open up the field helped Dallas keep it close. The Union have no one approaching his level of quality.

  14. Great One says:

    Yesterday was awful and there is outrage rightfully. But honestly is anyone surprised? Shaenon had a good throw in, the forwards moved well, Gaddis was outmatched, Macmath is lost, the defense was unorganized, the midfield is putrid, and Hack was outcoached. Pretty much the summary for the season right?
    .
    Unfortunately it still is so damn frustrating. Even with how bad we were…
    If he just does ANYTHING with that ball other than what he did then we win. Period.

    • Seriously, in WHAT universe is Chris Albright your “put the game to bed” sub!?!? Ridiculous. We were defending pretty much for the entire game after Wheelers goal.

      • Disagree, we had a height disadvantage and Albright was not only our only defensive option on the bench, he’s very good in the air. Made sense to bring him on.

        And for everyone who says that Albright’s foul on Feriera was in a dangerous spot, it was 40-45 yds from goal in the middle of the field. It wasn’t a shooting chance and a terrible angle to cross the ball. Fairly benign position to concede a free kick.

      • The Black Hand says:

        Albright’s experience and defensive nature made him the right sub, to protect a one goal lead. There weren’t really any better options.

  15. Seriously though it IS time for Zac sit. But look at it like this – after the Olympics disaster both Hamid and Johnson were sat down for various lengths/reasons at their club. They came back and are so much better for it.
    Due to the fact we have dumb management and a dumb FO, we have not been able to do the same for Zac. We have let him flounder for too long. Now that we have Nikolov, we can finally let Zac sit down, take the rest of the season in, and more than likely be the better for it.

  16. A great game for Dallas! Riddled with injury to their back line, down a man, playing away from home, they still pulled off a 3-2 win. Fantastic result! One goal was not counted but replay shows the ball was very much over the line. They are definitely a good team. Which begs the question, after four years why isn’t the Union?!
    .
    Managment is the real issue I think. Overall the team has been mismanaged from the front office down to the coaching staff. Real change can only come if change comes to the front office and the owernship group (which is not very likely). So we will continue to act like a small market team in a big, very demanding, sports market. A recipe for disaster.
    .
    Overall its a point. Against a very good team. So I’m sure the Union brass are very happy with the result. I’m also sure that that complaisant attitute is part of the problem.
    .
    As for the game, well MacMath is responsible for the last goal. That much is clear. He should not be on the pitch. He doesn’t trust himself and the team does not have any faith in him either. Gaddis is not a starter. He needs more time to develop. Perhaps on loan. Farfan needs to be traded. For all the talk about potential he has shown absolutely none. Cruz … well he needs to be traded as well. Enough already said about him from other posters.
    .
    Its hard to tell if this team has an identity. The first half they were punting the ball up field by-passing the midfield. That’s because they know the Union has no midfield. Never did. The second half Hackworth told them to keep the ball on the ground and play through the mid-field. Well Farfan and Carrol are just not very good in the center. So, after four years what kind of team is the Union? I don’t even they know. I don’t think they know either.

    • Excellent points, I’m actually willing to give Hackworth this year and next (can’t believe I’m writing this), then if they haven’t got an identity cut the cord. Unless your at a HUGE club, a manager needs time to make his decisions work and/or correct his mistakes. It’s not like he can go out and buy new players for every position. At least we’re not Toronto!

      • This team is much improved from last year. It’s impossible to fix everything all at once. They’ve brought in depth at CAM, LB, and GK during the season. If they can pick up a decent backup CB and CDM, and either bring Anding along, get Lahoud back, or pick up another winger, we should have a playoff caliber team. Of course, there’s still a big gap between playoff and championship caliber, but I feel like we’re progressing this season.

      • depth at LB? what roster have you been looking at? the one i see suggests we’re about to get a single LB, who happens to have washed out of the A-league, but are currently playing a player out of position in the spot.

    • Andy Muenz says:

      I don’t think we can call that a 3-2 Dallas win. If the earlier goal was counted good, Dallas would have been likely content with a tie at that point and not been pressing for the win.

      Did MacMath give up the ball that led to the free kick? Did he commit the foul? Was he the only one not to get to the ball when he couldn’t hold on to it? This wasn’t one man giving up the win, it was the team.

  17. It’s interesting to see the amount of vitriol here for a team of REALLY YOUNG players who just went toe to toe with one of the best teams in the league, largely outplaying them for significant stretches of time. the result is disappointing, the officiating was irregular and inconsistent, the coaching decisions were at times suspect, and the players lacked urgency after the second goal was scored (it’s disappointing to see petulant jackmac again, and to watch hoppenot seem to have lost any of his moves beyond the “run and dive”), but the team still sits 2nd in the division. you can call the results what you want: suspect, lucky, etc… but the sample size is large enough now that their standing is legit. The fact of the matter is this is a parity-driven league that has a few very great teams. The Union have beaten some of them, drawn some of them, and lost to some of them; the results you’d expect from a league built the way MLS is. Anyone here who wouldn’t have taken a 2nd place team on July 1st back at the beginning of the season needs to reexamine why they support the team in the first place.

    • How long will they be in second place? They are luck to be in the weaker East. Its not the standing the people have a problem with, its the very clear lack of quality on the field. They suck. If you watch soccer righ away one realizes that they suck. Watching these guys play and say a desent team in the EPL or even in MLS makes you wonder if the Union is even playing the same sport.

      • I am convinced someone told all the Eastern teams that the MLS cup causes cances/impotence/or has cooties because no team is stepping up to win this division.

      • UnitedPenn13 says:

        Not long. As of this morning they are tied with Sporting KC for 3rd place. After Zac’s screw up everyone in my section just looked at each other in disbelief. The Union snatching defeat from the jaws of victory again. And I consider this a defeat, allowing the opponent to tie it up at our home and being a man up.

    • Southside Johnny says:

      Not vitriol so much as Philly fan frustration. We have high hopes and expectations and little patience…kinda like our “petulant” striker.

  18. I’m also disappointed that Wheelers first goal did not stay a game winner. Woulda been a nice story. I like his height and skill in the air. In fact, I think he should now be the first striker off the bench (assuming Casey is the first striker off the field, which he has been usually) cause Hopponent has NOTHING left anymore.

  19. Dear Coach Hackworth. Zach MacMath is. Great young goaltender. Fantastic potential. Going to be a star keeper one day. Awesome! Now give the poor guy a few weeks off to re-focus. Okay? Please? Thanks!

  20. To be clear, it’s not vitriol it’s realistic analysis. Our players are not good enough to compete for a title, and it’s hard to see that changing any time soon. These “young” players have been in a pro environment for a number of years; judging them is completely legit – Jack and Amobi are legitimate MLS starters, Farfan not so much (at least not in the CAM role) and Zach is really in danger.

    What bothers me is our lack of high quality midfield talent – David Farreira changed the game when he came on, winning numerous midfield battles and creating Dallas possession and opportunities where there shouldn’t have been any. We have no one approaching that quality and with the small market mentality of the current owners, I don’t see that changing

  21. Michael Farfan was easily top 3 worst if not the worst player on the pitch yesterday. He is constantly so far out of position. When he is supposed to be attacking, he is even deeper than you can catch Keon and is practically standing behind Parke. When he should be hustling back and defending, he is hardly walking back from the striker spot and Jack Mac is back covering for him.
    .
    Another big lapse in his game is his decision making and 1 on 1 play. Michael cannot even dream of winning a ball in the air the way he was positioning himself in yesterday’s game. The only decent attempt to win a 50/50 ball from him led to a painfully obvious foul early in the game that he is lucky to have not picked a yellow up from. When it comes to 1 on 1 when Mike has the ball, I don’t think any defenders are worried anymore that he will dribble around them, since history shows that he will slow up, turn the ball over, and dive once he gets around them. Seemingly the only good part of his game from last year is somehow missing this year.
    .
    The only 2 positive notes from his game were 2 nice passes to McInerney. They were good, I’m not taking away from that. 2 nice passes doesn’t warrant another start out of him though.
    .
    A few other players having bad games shouldn’t hide how consistently out of position he was and how he offers no kind of outlet pass for any of his teammates. At this point, I almost wish we had traded him instead of Gabe so that we could have picked up a bit more money. Unfortunately, I doubt Chivas will still want him now.

  22. Lots of people jumping off the bridge this week. Zach does need to sit as soon as Nikolov is ready. I like the kid and think he can’t be something (unlike some others) but he looks like he needs to sit for a few games and catch his breath, and if doing so damages his psyche than he’s not going to be the player I think he can be. Gaddis is coming along, but still not fast enough for my liking. I still say this has a lot to do with the fact he doesn’t have a naturally left footed player in front of him to help his development. Hackworth needs to work on his game management, it’s almost like he has a flow chart and only knows how to go off it. We (and I lump myself into this as well sometimes) need to remember we root for the youngest team in the league and dumb shit will happen when your team is that young.

  23. Let’s be honest. The only player that really performed below reasonable expectations was Farfan. We know that MacMath is timid in the air and lacks confidence. We know that Gaddis is not a quality LB, and we know that Cruz’s best and perhaps only weapon is his high energy level.

    The players aren’t going to get significantly better overnight, and it seems the FO isn’t going to dish out for quality players.

    That being said, the most relevant problem is not the quality of players, but rather the absolutely nonsensical way in which they’re played.

    Wheeler was a solid move, as evidenced by the goal. However, he should have come on (Casey should have come off) sooner, and the other two substitutions made little-to-no sense.

    I (and I’m sure many others) would’ve had Torres on for Farfan and Anding on for Cruz. Or perhaps Albright could have come on for Farfan, assuming a conversion to a flat 4-4-2 formation.

    Just my two cents.

  24. A lot of you seemingly did not see/read the minutes of the recent Supporters/FO Summit (they are posted at bigsoccer.com). Hac and Nick clearly stated that this is a rebuilding year and that it will be a bonus if we make the play-offs…
    Hac also stated that he accepts mistakes from his 20yr old goal keeper since he still is learning… So they will be happy with the 1 point and move on. Instead of writing a lot here you should have been at this meeting and opened your mouths. All SOB’s were invited; if you were not then become a SOB member since we will have similar meetings in the future.

    • Keep shelling out the cash. They are rebuilding their mansions at your expense instead of investing in the team.

      • I dunno if anyone in the MLS not named Beckham or Henry are building mansions just yet on their revenue but I would very much like to know how much equity is being sucked out of the team by the owners.

    • seriously are you saying if I want to voice my opinion on a message board I would have to trek all the way up to Horsham PA(a half hour drive at least, involving toll roads, on a weekday) so I could ask questions to a couple of people who I think are completely full of shit in the first place? If this information was so vital in the first place maybe someone could have posted a transcript.

      • If a rebuilding team is in 3rd place, why not keep pushing forward, don’t accept mediocrity! I can’t imagine any in the organization being content with the 1 point, they all work way to hard (and dont get paid enough, lol). I’d also like to point out that most older MLS teams have at least 2 fan clubs, I wonder how that will play out for us?

      • I was thinking the same thing, it would have taken me over an hour to get there on a week day. So you are saying that because I didn’t go I don’t have a right to complain. That’s like saying even though I’m a season ticket holder but choose not to sit with the Sons Of Ben section I don’t have the right to cheer.

      • They said if you have any issue they want to be contacted. Here is the link to do so: http://www.philadelphiaunion.com/form/contact-us
        /
        They also mentioned that they will have more of these sessions in the coming months at various locations. Note that sitting next to me there was a Temple student who had come to Horsham by public transport!

      • yea because college students have so much on their plate at any given time.

      • Steve L. says:

        I did email, and got a generic response for starters. And my response is from being tired of being made to sound like a second class citizen because even though I love the Union I have other higher priorities in my life like family and work that go in front of going to a conference over an hour away.

  25. The Black Hand says:

    Another rebuilding year…awesome!!!

    • Yeah every year is a rebuilding year. Excuses just keep coming.

      • The thing is are they building? They don’t seem interested in adding pieces to build on. With the exception of the draft.

      • Whatever they are building it isn’t going to pass code. The beauty of the draft for them is that GA players don’t cost. It’s systematic cost containment all around. Smoke and mirrors with klebberson and Adu(hey look guys we have a DP). Meanwhile the real spenders get donovan and beckham and cahill etc.

  26. Unfortunately, I missed the original broadcast, and caught only the replay this morning. When up a goal and a man at the 87th minute, regardless of how much time is added, the strategy is to run for the corners and maintain possession, not dump long balls in the air. I don’t know what the instructions were from the bench, but there is NO reason for this game to have even gotten to the point where there was a chance for the foul in the midfield by Albright or the failure to punch clear the ball by MacMath. Strategic errors in the final minutes led to the tactical errors that seem to have dominated the comments here.

  27. fire ROB V says:

    Zack makes the same mistakes now that he made 2 years ago. I think he needs a coach that he can relate to and really learn from. For me it seems like Rob V is more worried about his future as a coach in this league than Making Zack better and improving on his weak spots. Rob is not a very good goalkeeper coach and I wouldn’t let him train my youth team keeper.. and yes I have seen him run more than one training session with the union keepers.

    TIME TO FIRE HIM

  28. Pingback: The Philly Soccer Page – Union vs FC Dallas quick reference

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