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Player ratings: Philadelphia Union 1-2 Inter Miami CF

Photo: Marjorie Elzey

Philadelphia Union dropped their MLS home opener 2-1 to Inter Miami behind goals from brothers Federico and Gonzalo Higuain. Jamiro Monteiro tallied the Union’s first goal in MLS play in the 54th minute to put Philly in front, but the Union couldn’t hold the lead as Miami nicked two goals largely against the run of play.

The biggest question that Jim Curtin faces after two matches in MLS play is how is his team going to create chances when teams drop numbers behind the ball? Jamiro Monteiro has been terrific so far this season, but does his play in the middle of the park give the Union the best opportunity to score goals? Particularly at home, when its likely teams will look to bunker against last season’s Supporters Shield Winners.

Leon Flach looked the part in his first MLS match at Subaru Park. The newly signed midfielder was aggressive with his tackles and his work rate was phenomenal. He was however punished for the mistakes that he did make, giving Miami an easy chance to equalize. Brought in with the tag that he could play left back or holding midfield, there will be questions whether Flach is the definite starter on the left side of the midfield if the Union continue to fail to carve out chances.

Player Ratings

Andre Blake – 6

Not a lot to do in the match for Blake. Can’t take too much blame for letting in two open headers from six yards. Made a tremendous stop on G. Higuain late in the match to keep the score 2-1.

Olivier Mbaizo – 3

Need a recap of Mbaizo’s night in one play? Watch the sequence mid way through the first half where he deftly skips away from a defender with the ball, dribbles 20 yards and plays an absolutely terrible pass straight back to Miami. Another inconsistent match for the right back who seemed to lack the timing and chemistry to get involved in attack and was all over the place defensively.

Jakob Glesnes – 2

Not a good evening for Glesnes. Gave the ball away cheaply in the first half and was only bailed out by the crossbar as Robinson cut in from the left. Flubbed a few high balls played toward him when he’s usually clean with his aerial duals. He had a few matches early last season that seemed nervy but settled in, we’ll all hope it’s the same this year.

Jack Elliott – 4

More consistent than Glesnes on the evening, but all around a quiet one for Elliott. Didn’t cover himself in glory on Miami’s winner with a nonchalant tackle on Figal before he got his cross away.

Kai Wagner – 4

More involved than Mbaizo on the left side. His chemistry with Flach is still a work in progress. The Miami winner came from his side and Wagner’s attempted slide tackle took him straight out of the play.

Jose Martinez – 4

Seemed too involved with the niggly-ness of the match and proved to be ineffective because of it. Martinez will have to have a hand in the Union attacks on nights when teams bunker like Miami did. He was ineffective with the ball too frequently on Saturday.

Leon Flach – 5

Would have given a 7 if Flach didn’t 1) commit a poor foul in a dangerous area with a tired tackle 2)lose his mark, the other team’s DP striker, on the ensuing set play for Miami’s equalizer. Outside that 60 second stretch, Flach had a great home debut where he surely endeared himself to the Philly fans. His industry was fantastic, he wasn’t afraid to get in for a tackle, gave a Miami player a proper shove on the sideline and was involved in the build up to the Union goal. The question for me on Flach is does he give you enough going forward down the left?

Alejandro Bedoya – 4

A slog of a match for the captain. Couldn’t seem to find space on the right to get involved in the attack. Didn’t have the chemistry with Mbaizo that looked to be building after the two matches against Saprissa. Worst of all, looked tired in the second half, not a word often associated with Bedoya.

Jamiro Monteiro – 7

The best player on the pitch for the Union all evening. Consistent in possession, relentless in pursuit without the ball. A brave finish as he knew he’d get cleaned out after striking the ball.

Sergio Santos – 4

What good is all that speed if you never get into a place to use it? Santos failed to get himself into the Union attack and really only found space to run with the ball once in the first half, and used it to create a half decent chance. That was a terrible dive to draw a penalty in the second half.

Kacper Przybylko – 5

More involved than Santos but still a relatively quiet night for the friendly striker. Tested McCarthy with a decent effort in the 50th minute. Notched an assist on Monteiro’s goal with a decent play keeping the attack alive.


Cory Burke – 2

A decent chance straight after coming on followed by a completely anonymous 27 minutes following that.

Anthony Fontana – 3

Has to find the game. Hardly managed a touch in his 11 minutes on the field.

Ilsinho – 3

Like Fontana, hardly found a touch. Disappointing to see him come off injured again as the Union bench is looking pretty light.

Jack McGlynn – n/a

Late cameo in replace of the injured Ilinsho.

Player of the Match – Federico Higuain

The second half sub set up his brother for the opener with a quality set piece delivery and scored the winner himself.

Geiger Counter

Alex Chilowicz – 2

Terrible evening for Chilowicz with the whistle. Inconsistent from start to finish, the referee never seemed to really have control over the match.


  1. Harsh ratings but DESERVED.
    I’m still giving Mbazio a month or two to get used to being a starter and clean up the mistakes and learn to combine with Bedoya better.
    Monteiro was a our best player, but is he best served at the 10? I think all the things he does great would help more at the 8.
    Does Flach slowly start to take over the Bedoya role? Both Flach and Bedoya in the midfield really limits our creativity and flair going forward.
    Is Glesnes the one who loses his spot to Findlay?
    How long until Curtin lets Burke play? I accept he scored amazingly important goals for us last season, but I always found it weird he just walked back into the team after 1.5 years away when the team took many steps forward. Maybe I just forgot how good burke can be, but on the other hand I wonder if the quality of the team didn’t bypass him.
    I am stil enamored by Santos’ skillset – such a combination of strength, speed and skill but it is being wasted. Either Curtin needs to get more out of him, or we need to try Santos next to Burke starting up top.

    • Chris Gibbons says:

      Really interesting point on Burke. I’ve been feeling it, but couldn’t quite put it into words like that.

  2. To me Kacper has been the weaker of whatever combinations of forwards we’ve played up top this year so far. I completely get that sounds questionable given that he’s scored and/or assisted in multiple games this year, but how maddeningly bad he’s been on the dribble and seemingly a second late in the decision-making all just makes it seem like for every half chance he creates, 5 or 6 chances go completely begging with him.

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