Player ratings / Union

Player ratings: Philadelphia Union 1-1 (4-1) Atlanta United

Photo: Marjorie Elzey

Philadelphia Union kept Atlanta United at arms length for most of the second leg of their Champions League quarterfinal. Outside Santiago Sosa’s well taken shot at the end of the first half, Atlanta found themselves with plenty of the ball but few opportunities on the evening.

The Union will count themselves perhaps as a little lucky as they had plenty of opportunities, 22 shots on the evening, to gain a little breathing room from Atlanta. But it was a terrific team performance from Philadelphia that sealed the tie, as the team worked tirelessly to limit Atlanta’s chances in the final third.

Player Ratings

Andre Blake – 7

Three saves on the night for Blake, who was generally comfortable after a superb first leg showing. Little he could do to stop Sosa’s well placed strike.

Olivier Mbaizo – 7

Solid effort from Mbaizo who showed some consistency on the night. Reliable in his defensive positions, he also got forward with a regularity that kept Atlanta honest.

Jacob Glesnes – 7

Good performance from Glesnes, who has seemed to have a mistake in him each game since the beginning of the season. Won his headers and kept Josef Martinez at bay.

Jack Elliott – 7

Similar to Glesnes, did his part. Was strong in the air and kept the Atlanta attacks in front of him on the night.

Kai Wagner – 7

Good night for Wagner at left back. Has a natural chemistry with Monteiro and picked good spots to get forward.

Leon Flach – 7

Fantastic shift for Flach, who deputized in the holding midfield role in Jose Martinez absence. Flach was everywhere, snuffing out Atlanta attacks and generally being a nuisance. His only mistake was on the Atlanta goal where he was better served staying goal side instead of trying to poke away the ball.

Alejandro Bedoya – 8

Tremendous shift for the captain, who covered a ton of ground against Atlanta. Was there to make every last ditch tackle and interception and then again for every outlet pass and move forward. Bedoya’s best match of the season so far.

Jamiro Monteiro – 8

Like Bedoya and Flach, another Union midfielder who put everything into the match. Reliable in possession, tireless in pursuit, Monteiro did everything he could to keep Atlanta on the back foot. Unfortunate that he’ll be suspended for the first leg of the semi-finals.

Anthony Fontana – 5.5

A better shift for Fontana than his previous starts in 2021, at least found the ball and involved himself in the game. Still has work to do to assure himself a starting spot.

Sergio Santos – 6

An active first half for Santos, who then faded after halftime. Did well to get on the ball and drive forward, but often his final third decisions were not the best.

Kacper Przybylko – 6

Scored the goal at the end to settle things, his fifth of the tournament. Struggled to involve himself in the first half, but came up with the goal when it was necessary to finish off Atlanta.


Cory Burke – 6

Decent appearance for Blake off the bench. Was physical and direct against a tired Atlanta defense. Terrific composure to pick out Przybylko on the goal.

Matt Real – 6

A better effort from Real, who looked well off the pace on the weekend in his first start of the season. Did the dirty defensive work and took his yellow card when necessary. Is Real’s role this season as a defensive sub in the midfield? Maybe not the worst role…

Jack McGlynn – n/a

A late cameo.

Player of the Match – Leon Flach

If you want to make arguments for Bedoya or Monteiro, I’ll take them under consideration. But Leon Flach put in a proper shift in the holding midfield role and was was everywhere on the night.

Geiger Counter

Armando Villarreal – 5

Decent enough performance from Villarreal, who wasn’t forced into too many big decisions on the night.


  1. Tim Jones says:

    Ernst Tanner has picked up a gem in Flach. .
    I was apprehensive when I heard Curtin had mentioned him as a replacement for Martinez, and openly nervous when I saw him as the starter there.
    Had he not misjudged the Sosa intervention, he would be a point or to higher, I would think.

    • Flach played defensive midfield role at St. Paulii. He’s been a heck of a pick up.

      I suspect he’ll be gone next year as he should have some suitors in Europe.

  2. Andy Muenz says:

    I think the site needs to take at least a point away from anyone taking an unnecessary yellow card which gets them suspended. So Monteiro especially needs to be docked for that since his absence will hurt them at the Azteca and he won’t be getting a rating for that game. Players need to be aware of these things going into the game and think about them.
    I would also give Burke and additional point. He played half as long as Santos but was able to make the run to get the assist on the tying goal.

    • Agreed on getting demerits for unnecessary cards, especially when it disqualifies a player for matches. Given he’s out for the CLL semifinal in Azteca, that’s especially costly for no benefit given it wasn’t an essential sacrifice to get to the semifinals.

  3. Tim Jones says:

    For the record, using Jack Elliott at the 6 was not an option Tuesday against Atlanta and will not be Saturday against Chicago.
    Stuart Findlay was out with a quad strain and is expected to be out with it Saturday.
    Leon Flach had to step up, and he did so magnificently.

  4. Not often that a player who gets rolled at the edge of their own 18 for the opponent’s only goal gets man of the match – but I totally agree. Other than that moment of madness he had a fantastic game!

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