MLS / Player ratings / Union

Player ratings: CF Montreal 1-2 Philadelphia Union

Philadelphia Union won their first match of the season on the awful turf at Montreal’s Olympic Stadium, edging the home side 2-1 via goals from Alejandro Bedoya and Daniel Gazdag. Forced to play the final 20 minutes a man down after Julian Carranza’s second yellow card, Andre Blake made some key stops and the Union showed enough grit to grab the three points. Mikael Uhre made his MLS debut and looked decent, though probably should have opened his account when breaking clear in on goal.

Player Ratings

Andre Blake – 8

Some top drawer saves from the Union goalkeeper, the best of which was probably his denial of Lassi Lappalainen’s half volley in the second half. Little he could do on the deflected Montreal goal.

Kai Wagner – 6

Workman like performance from Wagner, who did well to combine with Flach and progress down the Union left. His free kicks this season have been below his standard thus far.

Jack Elliott – 6

Decent if unspectacular match for Elliott. Three clearances and four recoveries.

Jakob Glesnes – 7

Probably the most complete performance from the Union defenders, Glesnes put together another reliable outing. Six clearances, all coming from within 12 yards of his own goal.

Nathan Harriel – 7

Did fairly well in his season debut and very well might have won himself the right back job. The Montreal goal was unfortunate and a fairly uncontrollable deflection.

Jose Martinez – 6

Gritty stuff from the holding midfielder who did a decent job denying Montreal space through the midfield. Finished with 11 recoveries and covered a ton of ground.

Leon Flach – 6

Good night for Flach who was up and down the left side all game. Has shown a bit more offensive prowess so far this season. Six recoveries and four tackles won.

Alejandro Bedoya – 7

Big goal from the captain who found the ball after a messy passage in the Montreal box and finished coolly.

Daniel Gazdag – 7

Gets an extra point for the game winner, a good finish after a really nice first touch on the turf. Still yet to find the rhythm of dictating play from the top of the diamond, though clearly still early days.

Sergio Santos – 5

Not too many opportunities for Santos to get in behind the Montreal backline. Forced to come back and play short passes, the Brazilian failed to leave much of an impact on the match.

Julian Carranza – 5

Notched a nice assist, taking down the ball over the top well and laying a nice pass into the path of Gazdag. Did well to work the goalkeeper with a good shot in the first half. A bit unlucky to receive the second yellow on a pretty soft call.

Subs

Mikael Uhre – 5

Showed good pace to latch onto the ball and get a breakaway at the end of the match. Should have scored or at least played the ball across for Sullivan to tap in. Looked lively though and Union fans will be excited to see what he brings from the start of a match.

Olivier Mbaizo – 2 

Brought into the midfield for defensive cover as the Union defended the lead down a man, he completely lost Kamal Miller, who should have scored. The leash has to be getting tighter for Mbaizo, who could very well be finding himself falling down the depth chart.

Quinn Sullivan -n/a

Late cameo for Sullivan, who will felt disappointed to not have gotten a pass from Uhre after a lung busting run down the center of the pitch.

Man of the Match – Daniel Gazdag

Some arguments to be made for Blake, who had a strong performance, but I’ll give it to Gazdag for a well taken goal to win it and grab all three points.

Geiger Counter

Drew Fischer – 2

Should have easily seen the foul in the build up to the disallowed Montreal goal. The second yellow for Carranza was soft as there wasn’t much in it.

11 Comments

  1. Andy Muenz says:

    I think you’re being a little hard on Uhre for not passing to Sullivan. Just like a 2 on 1 in hockey, the defender was guarding against the pass so there is a strong possibility that if he had passed it would have been intercepted. An own goal off a deflection would have been more likely than a Sullivan goal. I think Uhre did the right thing by putting the ball on target and forcing the keeper to make a save.

    • That pass didn’t exist. Watch the replay… OOH-R… did all he could do, except score.

      Can’t wait for Sat.
      Light it up!
      DOOP.

  2. I have a question…. Is MLS like MLB, where you can demote a player for let’s say ‘conditioning’ to the lower divisions?

    Maybe that’s all Mbizo needs… a month with Phila 2, riding the bus to Loudon County, Pittsburgh and Rochester. Maybe those bus rides and ZERO fans will snap him out of this terrible stretch of play.

    • Andy Muenz says:

      You think those bus rides are worse than plane trips to Africa to sit on the bench there?

      • Not sure… Depends on their travel budget… Aircraft hopefully not from Indiana Jones.

        Can they arrange for a bus thru Africa? Might work too.

    • T.Coolguy says:

      I think it’s less that Mbaizo needs to be humbled by going to Union 2, and more that Mbaizo just isn’t that good.

    • Mbaizo going to Union II for any purpose other than an injury rehab assignment would block the development of the younger player slotting in for coach LeBlanc at right back.
      .
      I would guess creating such a blockage in the developmental pipeline is unlikely. Mbaizo has already had meaningful time with the lower professional development team, aside from the injury circumstance I doubt they would give him more.
      .
      He signed with Bethlehem Steel FC in 2018 and was signed to the Union later that same spring, but spent the bulk of the year rehabbing from injury. He has had 33 appearances with Bethlehem, probably mostly in 2019.

  3. I love to hate on referees as much as anyone else, but I think a 2 is really harsh on Fischer. Yeah maybe he should have called the Mihailovic foul on the field, but he got it right in the end.
    .
    Also the Carranza second yellow is a little unlucky in how it happens, but it’s a textbook yellow card given how he almost ends up standing on Brault-Guillard’s left ankle. If anything the first one was softer, but even then he pulls Lappalainen’s shirt from behind.
    .
    Plus, he had a pretty quick trigger on yellow cards (see the yellows for Kone/Wanyama in the first half and the yellow for Zouhir for basically his first involvement after being subbed on) so I’d say he was consistent over the course of the game which is the most important thing for a ref at the end of the day.

    • Deez Nuggs says:

      I’m with you. I think the second yellow was perfectly reasonable. But I thought the first one was soft. I don’t remember it being a breakaway or creating any danger for the opponent.

      • Yeah, I think you have a fair argument.
        .
        To me, it seemed like he pulled out the yellow because Carranza tugged the jersey and made no real attempt at the ball. And like I said, he was quick to give Montreal yellows so I don’t have a problem with him being consistent about that.

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