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MLS Cup match report: Los Angeles FC 3-3 (3-0) Philadelphia Union

Photo: Stephen Speer

Los Angeles FC defeated Philadelphia Union 3-3 (3-0 PKs) in the MLS Cup Final on Saturday afternoon at Banc of California Stadium. In one of the most amazing MLS games in history, the home team dug deep in extra time and the penalty shootout to win.

LA took the lead in the 28th minute through a Kellyn Acosta free kick, deflected into the goal off Jack McGlynn’s head. The Union would equalize on 59 minutes through Daniel Gazdag’s well-taken goal from a recycled corner. LA went in front again on 83 minutes when Jesus Murillo’s header from a corner beat Andre Blake, but Philadelphia forced extra time through Jack Elliott’s header from Kai Wagner’s free kick just two minutes later.

Extra time was a wild half hour that saw LAFC goalkeeper Maxime Crepeau sent off after suffering a serious injury when he collided with Cory Burke as the Union man broke in on goal and was denied a clear goal scoring opportunity. Elliott scored his second goal of the match on 120+4′, tapping in after the Union kept a set piece alive in the LA box. But substitute Gareth Bale rose highest for a header into the box on 120+8′ to force penalty kicks.

Former Union man John McCarthy came in at goal for LAFC and didn’t allow a single goal in the shootout, denying Jose Martinez and Kai Wagner after Daniel Gazdag’s kick sailed over the bar as the midfielder slipped on the turf. Meanwhile, LA scored three of four penalties, with Ilie Sanchez’s kick deciding the game in the fourth round.

Jim Curtin was forced into one change to the team that defeated NYCFC in the Eastern Conference Final. With captain Alejandro Bedoya not fit enough to start, Jack McGlynn started the match on the right side of the Union midfield diamond. Giorgio Chiellini was also out on the LAFC backline, with Sebastien Ibeagha stepping in for the Italian.

After the Union started brightly, LAFC took the lead in the 28th minute through Acosta. Jose Martinez gave the ball away inside the Union half and then was forced to commit a foul as LA broke toward goal. With it looking like Carlos Vela would shoot with his left foot, it was Acosta who stepped up and fired with his right. The shot took a strong deflection of McGlynn’s head and the wrong-footed Andre Blake could only watch as the ball tucked into the corner.

Blake was at his very best to deny LA a two-goal lead on 39 minutes. After another dangerous LA free kick, the ball was recycled and crossed to the back post for Diego Palacios, whose hard shot was denied by Blake at close range.

The Union would draw level through Gazdag on 59 minutes. The ball was partially cleared after a Union corner, but Jose Martinez gathered 35 yards out. The midfielder took on one of his trademark long distance shots, and he kept his effort low and smashed it perfectly into the path of Gazdag, who had retreated perfectly into an onside position at the top of box. Gazdag took a perfect touch to slow the ball down and smashed home with his second to tie the game.

LAFC would take the lead in the 83rd minute through Murillo. Vela’s inswinging corner kick from the LA right side was met by Murillo at the near post and nodded perfect into the far post just out of the reach of Blake.

The Union would equalize just two minutes later through Elliott in the 85th minute. Kai Wagner’s free kick from 35 yards out on the Union left was placed perfectly and Elliott met the powerful cross with a strong header to beat Crepeau at the near post from 12 yards out.

The game would turn on its head in the 116th minute. A long ball over the top saw Burke in on goal, and as he touched the ball past Creapeu, the goalkeeper collided with the striker. Creapeu was carted off the field with what looked like a serious leg injury and was shown a red card on his way off for the denial of goal scoring opportunity. Former Union goalkeeper John McCarthy entered for LA at goalkeeper as Burke was also forced off after the collision.

Moments later Jack Elliott scored his second goal of the game, tapping home from close range on 120+4′ after yet another Union free kick was recycled in the LA box. It looked like what would surely be the Union’s game-winner.

But substitute Gareth Bale would rise highest over Elliott on 120+8′ to nod LA equal and force penalty kicks.

In the shootout, the Union failed to convert a single penalty kick as Gazdag slipped and kicked over the bar and then Martinez and Wagner’s penalties were saved by McCarthy. Meanwhile, after Cristian Tello missed the first attempt, LA converted through Denis Bouanga, Ryan Hollingshead, and Ilie Sanchez to win the shootout and lift MLS Cup.

The Union, gutted, saluted their traveling supporters before leaving the pitch for the last time in 2022.


Philadelphia Union 

Andre Blake, Kai Wagner, Jack Elliott, Jakob Glesnes, Olivier Mbaizo, Jose Martinez, Leon Flach, Jack McGlynn (Paxten Aaronson 84′), Daniel Gazdag, Julian Carranza, Mikael Uhre (Cory Burke 71′ (Chris Donovan 120′))

Unused subs: Matt Freese, Matt Real, Nathan Harriel, Jesús Bueno, Alejandro Bedoya, Quinn Sullivan

Los Angeles FC

Maxime Crépeau, Sebastien Ibeagha, Jesús Murillo, Diego Palacios, Ryan Hollingshead, Ilie Sánchez, Kellyn Acosta (Cristian Tello 91′), José Cifuentes, Cristian Arango (Kwadwo Opoku 74′ John McCarthy 118′)), Denis Bouanga, Carlos Vela (Gareth Bale 97′)

Unused subs: Franco Escobar, Eddie Segura, Sebastián Méndez, Giorgio Chiellini, Latif Blessing

Scoring summary

LAFC: Kellyn Acosta — 28′
PHI: Daniel Gazdag — 59′ (Jose Martinez)
LAFC: Jesus Murillo — 83′ (Carlos Vela)
PHI: Jack Elliott — 85′ (Kai Wagner)
PHI: Jack Elliott — 120+4′
LAFC: Gareth Bale — 120+8′ (Diego Palacios)


LAFC: Cristian Tello — save
PHI: Daniel Gazdag — miss
LAFC: Denis Bouanga — goal
PHI: Jose Martinez — save
LAFC: Ryan Hollingshead — goal
PHI: Kai Wagner — save
LAFC: Ilie Sanchez — goal

Disciplinary Summary

PHI: Jack Elliott — 14′ (foul)
LAFC: Jose Cifuentes — 65′ (foul)
LAFC: Sebastien Ibeagha — 85′ (foul)
PHI: Julian Carranza — 90+1′ (foul)
LAFC: Maxime Crepeau — 116′ (red card – DOGSO)

LA Statistic PHI LA Statistic PHI


Possession % 52.9 81 Duels Won 68
16 Shots 17 12 Tackles Won



Shots on Goal 3 1 Saves 5
6 Blocked Shots 5 40 Clearances



Total Passes 495 15 Fouls 26
70.2 Pass Accuracy % 72.5 2 Yellow Cards



Corners 5 1 Red Cards 0
12 Crosses 25 .9 xG







  1. el Pachyderm says:

    There is no indemnity for this loss.
    An inconsolable… Dark Night of the Soul.

    So Union.
    I coined the phrase all those years ago. No one else gets to use it today.

    • Sorry, sent a text to someone with that exact phrase when the last goal was scored.

      • el Pachyderm says:

        Ha. Right on.
        So Union.
        There’s no recovering from this… only learning to live with the injury.
        Prius of them and totally frustrated by them. Like my children…

    • Nor will I. I don’t feel it was. I remember the dark times and what that phrase meant. Losing in a final — where someone must — is hard. Losing on penalties feels worse only because you are sooo close. But to get to MLS Cup with the season we had, play one of the toughest teams ever, to play in the toughest stadium, to then be in control for large portions against a club that spends buckets more money for one-of-a-kind talent and not only hold them to a draw but to come from behind twice to do it and in fact briefly hold a lead… I will not shame this team for that. I’m gutted at being so close. I’m kicking because Gazdag slips and if he doesn’t… who knows. But I will not shame this team for what they did.

      • PaulContinuum22 says:


      • el Pachyderm says:

        For the record that statement wasn’t about shame… it was resignation.
        I’m proud of them. Resilient as hell as a franchise, this year, these playoffs… this game.
        But the manner in which they lost when autopsying the game is 100% … So Union.
        It is unarguable.

    • I feel like the meaning of the phrase “that’s so Union” has evolved since it was first coined back in the dark ages. Back then it was a face palm, now it’s something to be proud of.

  2. Philly beat philly. Not Wales, not Mexico, not italy….

  3. OneManWolfpack says:

    I am beside myself with what I just watched. Traveled all this way to have an unforgettable experience but man oh man. Sigh. I’ve seen the past tough losses, both in person and on tv, but this one wrecked me. Just absolutely brutal. I got nothing else.
    Again… sigh…

  4. PaulContinuum22 says:

    So that happened. As chokes go…
    Greg Norman, 1996 Masters.
    1964 Phillies.
    Bayern Munich, 1999 Champions League final.
    2004 Yankees.
    2022 Union.
    #TheyHadOneJob #MoneyballDoesntWork.
    Gareth Bale 2022=Joe Carter 1993. Typical Philly. Typical U. And why were there almost TEN FORKING MINUTES OF STOPPAGE TIME? And an ex-Union GK is the game’s MVP. I am volcanic with rage.
    LAFC breaks out the Brinks truck.
    Jay Sugarman: what’s a Brinks truck? The Phillies went into a 15-year abyss spiral after Carter destroyed them. The U’s fate will be worse. They will merely be forgotten by everyone outside Subaru Park and the Sons of Ben.
    Academy schmacademy. Benjamins get it done. This is a time to vent, scream and curse the fates. We are cursed.

    • You score 117th minute up a man it’s a mortal lock always but the script must promote the big time Premier League signing guy for the newish giant market team. Just like last year when they promoted the giant market NYC team while we were down ELEVEN men cause Covid (no real league plays that game). I can’t even pretend that all didn’t happen at our expense. Call me a conspiracy theorist or whatever . I don’t care. That’s Hollywood script. Give us just enough to say ooooh soooo close. F*** this Mickey Mouse wanna be big time league.

    • This was not a choke on the level of Norman or the ’64 Phillies. This was being beaten on one play by a world class player.
      And if you can’t deal with the fact that the Union aren’t going to pay high salaries, either buy the team yourself or go root for Miami when they sign Messi to a golden parachute retirement contract.

      • PaulContinuum22 says:

        They took the collar like no team has taken the collar since the Falcons coughed up a 25 point lead to the Pat’s.
        Up a goal, 3 minutes to a title, extra man. Great teams close the deal.

      • You’re saying that blowing a one goal lead on a goal scored by the player who was once sold for a world record transfer fee to a team who blew a 4 score lead? I’m sorry, that’s just a ridiculous comparison.

      • Bale is hardly world class. The guy cannot even start for LAFC. Cherundolo is a prick. And what was up with Curtin’s shirt? MLS simply sucks. F the Union. Can’t score ONE PK when a trophy awaits? F=in pathetic. And where is that supermarket the Union promised Chester? BS… time to bail on this “team”.

      • Just because a retirement player can’t start for the team and go 60+ minutes doesn’t mean he’s not a world class finisher.
        But if you want to bail on the team after this season and this game, then good riddance.

      • PaulContinuum22 says:

        I’d rather have Messi on this team than Martinez or Mbazio.

      • If you’re getting Messi, he’s taking Gazdag’s place…you know the guy who was second in the league in goals, not Martinez or Mbaizo. Or do you just want to dump all that money to put more offensive and fewer defensive players on the field?

      • Paul, Andrew…
        Door’s over there. See yourself out. You won’t be missed.

  5. I thought, “That’s so union.”

    but really that used to mean, we sucked again. But today it means, we played with heart and heart and heart and some how the soccer god still did not smile.

    So proud of this team.

    • Drluciferwoo says:


    • yeah, how is that heart thing working for ya? union totally tanked. burning my jerseys right now, like jeff agoos. f them. bring on the world cup asap. no union players there, thank friggin’ god.

      • Heart is working fine because I feel proud to be a Union fan. If you don’t, feel free to go root for any other team you’d like.
        You better skip the Cameroon games in case Mbaizo plays if you don’t want to watch Union players. And considering the Union only have 2 or 3 American starters (depending on whether you count McGlynn) is it surprising that none play for the US?

      • Yeah, go ahead and burn them…we don’t need “fans” like you.

    • Right on! Proud of these guys!!

  6. I thought, “That’s so union.”

    But really, that used to mean, 8 years ago, we sucked again.

    Today it meant we played heart and heart and heart, and some how the soccer gods did not smile.

    Proud of this team today.

  7. Soccerdad720 says:

    FYI- final score after regulation was 3-3, not 2-2 in headline.

    So proud of the union team; They went toe to toe and slugged it out. They never stopped believing and neither did I for almost 3+ hours. In the end, it’s an incredibly slim margin at the top in all sports. This game was decided by the thinnest of thin margins.

    Tough to take, for sure. But in the end, these guys are entertainers. And boy did they do their jobs this year.

    I’ve got my tix for next year, and I’ll be there in the same seats I’ve had from the beginning. I got more than my moneys worth this year. See y’all in late February or early March.

    Thank you Union.

    God bless us all tonight in processing this loss. May he give us all perspective.

    • PaulContinuum22 says:

      You’re gonna split hairs over the score after extra time? Whatever gets you through the night. Once more with feeling; SPENDING $$ WINS.

  8. Disappointing result. It shows how random a one game elimination can be.
    That being said, congratulations to the Union on one of the best seasons in MLS history. Numerous records set. 4 players on the best XI. 3 players and the coach won post season awards (and 1 finished second to a teammate).
    And now there’s one more step they can take next season.

    • PaulContinuum22 says:

      And no MLS Cup. You forgot that. They choked against a 10-man LAFC. 3 f’n minutes to go and they gagged.

      • I didn’t forget that. I just have enough class to appreciate the season the team had. Unfortunately, you don’t.

      • Take a walk, pal.

      • I understand your pain. But Gareth Bale is a massive amazing player. It’s not a choke when someone of his caliber does things only he can do. Did we make mistakes, of course. So did they. But in they end they couldn’t beat us. Penalties are a crapshoot. Best season and more to build on.

  9. Better team lost. And what are you going to do? Gareth Fucking Bale. Better team lost. I just hope the boys can pick themselves up off the floor. They must be completely gutted. Everyone at my house is devastated. I can’t blame the boys. They played great. There are 26 other teams and fan bases that would gladly have traded places with us.

    • Unsurprisingly, I can report that the locker room was about as quiet I’ve ever heard it.

      • Man, I feel for them. They deserved more.

      • I would have thought it would be full of venom for Martinez. He single-handedly killed them. Disastrous, goal eventuating, turnovers and embarrassing penalty take. He needs to go. I can’t defend him anymore.

      • I was thinking similarly regarding Martinez, but he also made the pass that sprung Gazdag. Just needs to learn when to make the safe play and when to make the spectacular one.

      • I missed the extra time and penalty’s to support my daughter’s event, so I’m reading about the outcome now. Can only imagine how the players and staff must feel…

    • PaulContinuum22 says:

      I’d rather have the worst record in the league than to lose like THAT. This is a franchise-destroying moment.

  10. Disappointed says:

    I get that the team played their hearts out but how come no one is mentioning the player choices for the penalty kicks? Gazdag slipped but why pick 2 defensive players instead of offensive ones for the next two kicks?? Makes no sense.

    • I’m not sure why that happened. I was surprised when Martinez stepped up for sure. I thought the LA choices were weird too.

      • Come to think of it though. I maybe let Elliot take the second.

      • Curtain needs to go. He can not win when it is on the line. Jim is 0-4 when the title is in the line. I hope the academy had good players cofoeTd for we are about to lose a lot. As a founder I g member for 13 years from the beginning I am so disappointed in his performance

      • Curtin needs to go after that season? And who are you planning to replace him with? And he’s 0-2-2 in finals, not 0-4. And 2 of those games (the two in Chester) were against teams who had MUCH more talent than the Union.

    • Honestly, what’s the point? You get to a final against a team bringing players off the bench who won Copa Del Reys and Champions Leagues and play them in their park to a draw. That game tilted on one moment of world class quality from a ayer who honestly doesn’t belong in the league. It’s like the opponents in a high school basketball game bring out prime Robert Horry. I can’t even bring myself to micromanage. We didn’t get beat nor bossed. We were just short. Only heartache is that these opportunities are so few.

      • With luck there will be another opportunity next year and the result will compare with how the conference championship game went this year compared to last.

      • PaulContinuum22 says:

        LAFC went the extra mile to get Bale. Nobody else did. Crying over spilt milk. This was their shot, and they p1ssed it all away.

  11. How many finals curtain lose now?

    • I have no idea how many he lost as a player, but as a coach his team’s have lost two, one against Seattle and one in Houston. They’ve also drawn two others.

    • el Pachyderm says:

      It’s Curtin… Loser.
      welcome to the neighborhood.

    • The Union teams in those past USOCs weren’t anywhere near as good as the recent team. LAFC is a powerhouse of marquee purchases.
      . . .
      We were lucky with the draws to get to the first one in 2014 where a dominant Seattle deserved its win and we were lucky to take it to OT.
      . . .
      The next year in 2015 was our best chance to win, but SKC was no pushover amd it went to sudden death PKs. McCarthy–the PK killer today–was brought on late to handle the shootout given that talent. Through sudden death PKs he saved none. The youth who missed his PK in sudden death due to obvious panic went on to beat us in the third time we appeared in the USOC final in Houston in 2018.
      . . .
      What those two youths needed was more time in play amd pressure on a good foundation that we built. Unfortunately, some other team got the benefits of the trophies with them.
      . . .
      Again, those things show that Curtin can train players and go far with what he has. If Sugarman just did a little sugardaddying with a couple marquee pieces, he can win more silverware.
      . . .
      Sugarman likes building players and selling them for profit (Paxten is apparently next). He needs to invest in a couple of key marquee pieces or keep enough of those we develop.
      . . .
      Curtin is not without trophy accomplishment. He won a Supporters Shield in 2020.
      . . .
      COVID likely denied him an MLS Cup last year.

    • How about you learn how to spell?

  12. 100% this

  13. Trully heartbreaking. And if the Phils cant pull it off tonight, today will go down as a historically bad Philly sports day. My two questions are the PK lineup, and why did we not park the bus better up 1 with like three minutes left. Nothing should have been getting past us.

    I for one did not see today as a So Union game. It is damn hard to take that last step and Im proud of them for battling back in a very hostile place, PK debacle aside. I do feel it is So Philly to get beat by our former GK…

    Somewhere in the multiverse there are Union teams celebrating a righteous victory at home as these other MLSs dont have the stupid tiebreaker rule for seeding.

    Just gutted, but the players feel immeasurably worse. Still damn proud of this team.

    • Agreed on the proud and proud to have been at Subaru Park this afternoon watching the game.
      Regarding parking the bus, that’s one of the issues with a team that doesn’t keep possession. It’s really hard to change their style. Just the fact that they had 53% possession is not a good thing for the team. That usually means they either win by 4+ goals or they don’t win at all.
      As far as the PK lineup, I think it was likely a combination of things. I’m hoping Curtin has seen the players take PK’s in practice and knows who is more likely to convert. However, he was also without some of his likely choices, specifically Uhre and Burke. That left him with Carranza, (who was probably up 4th or 5th), a couple of kids (Aaronson and Donovan) and a bunch of defensive minded players. And obviously you don’t expect the usually reliable Gazdag to slip like that.

    • PaulContinuum22 says:

      Whod’ve thunk Diddy had this whole title securing deal figured out so many years ago? It TRULY IS all about the Benjamins.
      Prove me wrong. I beg you.

      • Then go buy the team and spend the money. If you’re not able or willing to do that, get used to it or go pick a team that is going to do that. Because it’s not going to change in Philly, nor should it.

  14. Proud? What for? They friggin’ lost! F the Union. The Chester Union. At least they bus in the white people from the train so they don’t have to actually see Chester. What an utter scam.

  15. Ugh, a 10-0 loss would be less embarrassing than this

  16. Martinez was the weak link for me. Consistently. I knew he wouldn’t make the PK.
    Questioned the set play kicks by Jack. But who cares? Career game otherwise for him.
    Burke subbed off was on brand after his own career game.
    Gazdag slip so hard to witness.
    Bale goal: The broadcasters “[union player] kicks it away. why not?!” Then it set up the play to the equalizer. That’s why.

    I really love these teams playing each other. It’s awesome. So heartbroken

  17. PaulContinuum22 says:

    The difference, when history is written, that pinching pennies Philly simply didn’t have a high-priced matchwinner to bring off the bench while free-spending LAFC DID.

    • I wish I had the money you’d like to spend so much but I don’t, so I don’t constantly whine about it like a little baby. I’m sure the LAFC fans would welcome a bandwagoner.

  18. Dude…absolutely the worst pks I’ve ever seen….how does Martinez go 2…I don’t give a shit what you tell me , carranza needs to be the 2nd taker…then wanger goes and gives the pussiest of pussy takes iv ever seen, and where did uhre go these playoffs…but anyway, as soon as Martinez went up as the 2nd taker I knew we had a problem…and how does a team never figure out how to play a man’s been their entire existence, they go a man up and shit the bed…shades of Union from 2013 2014

    • The problem was that with Burke going out, they had limited options. Whether Carranza takes number 2 or number or number 5, you still need 3 other takers and the only other offensive options are Donovan and Aaronson. Maybe they would have done better, but who knows?

      • I understand but, I need offensive dudes to go 1st…Martinez would be after Blake in my line up for pks

  19. The stadium watch party was excellent.
    . . .
    The team played well in LA. It’s a fierce atmosphere. We had some bad breaks being screwed out of home-field advantage along with the Shield due to the stupid ‘more wins’ rule over goal aggregate. Bedoya couldn’t play.
    . . .
    We showed that earning success through player development and good teamwork competes with purchasing it as LAFC have done. Even McCarthy who won MVP for his PK stops was a Philly-trained product and former Union player.
    . . .
    LAFC’s model is hard to sustain without major cash as Atlanta’s slide shows because they don’t build what they have. Ours is more affordable, sustainable, and crafting of player familiarity.
    . . .

    That said, we do need a marquee piece or even two to complement and augment our program. We don’t need an army of them, but we shouldn’t have none. That’s where subbing in a fresh-legged Bale over a fresh-legged U2 youth like Donovan makes a key difference. It’s also for teaching and training our youths.

    • PaulContinuum22 says:


    • I don’t think Donovan was part of the plan until Burke got hurt. And I don’t think the Union want players who aren’t capable of giving more than 20 minutes or so on a regular basis.

      • Supersubs have played key roles. Bale had injury problems this year and has the WC upcoming hence his late appearance, but he’s no old man yet at 33. He has a couple more years in him.

      • PaulContinuum22 says:

        Maybe they SHOULD.

    • McCarthy should be embarrassed to accept the MVP. He did nothing. And we negated just about everyone else for most of the game, they had nobody to give it to so they said, “Screw it, give it to him.”

  20. PaulContinuum22 says:

    And unless things change in a hurry, there will be NOTHING more Philadelphia sports than 2 Philadelphia sports teams losing 2 championships on the same fccckking NIGHT.

    • Yeah it hurts…bad. The Union and Phillies were underdogs. We aren’t as bad as some other cities. Eagles are 8-0. We’ve won a Super Bowl and World Series in recent times. Cheer up. It’s been a fun ride to even be in these things this year.

      • PaulContinuum22 says:

        Pride. Heart. At this moment, just a dictionary. Herman Edwards press conference back in the day. You play to WIN THE GAME. Nobody remembers who finished second.
        Those 2 words ring so hollow and empty. This was their time, and they blew it. And who knows if they’ll ever be back here again.

      • Paul. Yes, second isn’t remembered outside the home town. The Union will win an MLS Cup. The Phils have won the WS. That may happen for the Union for the first and Phillies for another sooner rather than later given the core of the teams will be here next year. Would you rather be playing for a title or know early and often that your team has no chance? For example, the Astros lost the WS in 2019 and 2021. They got it this time. That’s sports.

    • Desh Bouksani says:

      Paul Cont.

      Wash up, then beat it.

  21. Atomic Spartan says:

    Observations from the pitch full of Doopers and beyond:
    Where else can you experience both the thrill of temporary victory and the agony of non-regulation defeat both in one night? Gotta thank the U for letting us thrill and suffer together to end the season.
    Remember this moment and remember this team. They fought like a band of brothers against the toughest possible odds and came within minutes of getting it all. There will be departures and new arrivals and we will not see them all again together. Thanks for the ride. Jim and Ernst have some work to do to onboarding the newcomers
    Yes it’s so Union (sorry Pachy) and it’s so Philly too. What did you expect? This is the anti-LA. We don’t come late and leave early. We don’t pose or front-run. We wear our negativity with pride but we don’t Bale on our teams. Take it from someone who had to listen to the radio as Gene Mauch and Joe Kuharich broke our hearts, but never our devotion.
    Dining tonight in Swedesboro, people stopped us -twice- when they saw our Union gear. They had watched the game on TV. Far from being angry, they were excited. “Helluva game” was their takeaway. Smiles and good wishes all around. “Can’t wait for next year…”
    We’re a whole tri-state region of underdogs, even when we’re not. And sourpusses want to torch the plan and BUY our way to a trophy, as if Garber would even let us? What’s the matter, did you miss the orientation session?
    Maybe the sour grapes of so many posts above this post are healthy. False bravado perhaps. Maybe venting to give voice to despair. We understand even as we disagree.
    Betcha you”ll be back anyway. Where else can you have this much fun?
    C’mon the U. Drop.

    • PaulContinuum22 says:

      Andre Blake…goalie of the year except in the title game. Gave up 3 goals…

      • Atomic Spartan says:

        Curious about your credentials.

      • John P. O'Donnell says:

        I know it’s early November and it’s hard to find a fly so you can pull its wings off and get your jollies but at least everyone is interested in your opinion and we appreciate you making time for the comment page.

    • PaulContinuum22 says:

      Once more; $$ wins titles. Rule 1. Rule 2? You have a problem with that, refer to Rule 1. It is a fact of life in MLS.

      • Cool..well I guess we will never win anything then because we don’t have $$$$…so thanks for you opinion now fuckin kick rocks dude

  22. I hate the underdog blue collar narrative. Success is success and talent is talent. It’s a set-up to ease the pain of losing. It’s bullshit

  23. Just unbelievable. Probably the best team we’ll ever have. Hell of a year though, really makes you put into perspective some of those seasons we suffered through.
    Up a man, minutes left, their only good forward left to make a run. Why, why?

  24. PaulContinuum22 says:

    Blake picked a real suckass time to give up 3 goals. This is on him, too.

    • Bullshit. It was a deflection he had 0 chance on and 2 point blank goals he had no chance on. Blame the defense for allowing the point blank shots, but it is NOT on Blake.

  25. PaulContinuum22 says:

    This game was like the ending of the movie Moneyball. Paraphrasing;

    “The flaw in the Union’s thinking, and this comes from the top of their organization – is they think they’ve devised a science to win games. They thumb their nose at reality. At tradition. At the sport itself.
    “They’re bean counters in Philly. They’re card counters at the blackjack table who forget one thing;
    “The house always wins.”

    • We’re into building. Our model has more lasting power and it already competes with those who purchase success with big spending but nothing underneath.
      . . .
      I agree, we need one or two marquee players to crest to the trophy, but we’re built to last in competitiveness, not be a flash in the pan and fall when we can’t afford to simply buy a title like others have who can’t sustain that long term.
      . . .
      Cheer up. We’ve a bright future ahead with our team. We don’t need an army of expensive big purchases, only a couple impactful ones for trophies amd training youths. Pressure on Sugarman to deliver that will follow.
      . . .
      Losing sucks so the pain is shared. Hate seeing LAFC win a Shield and Cup home field advantage on a bogus rule and then winning on PKs due to purchasing rather than earning success. It was worse when we were a toilet team for years. Our development and underestimated ‘value for money’ eye for talent approach is a winner. With a couple marquee player tweaks that overall cost less than purchasing everything needed to win is a winning formula with lasting power. Marquee players will want to play for us now too.
      . . .
      Next step…we got further than ever this year so let’s take it further. Look at marquee players who can help. Focus on next season and making a good CCL run given we punched our ticket for that again as a major accomplishment for only the best teams. We need to be Rocky not a quitter. That’s Philly. Get up, dust off, fight harder and smarter. Success will come. Fans play a role in that and our fans are admitted winners by observers who know our impact. Pressuring Sugarman to give us that edge on some marquee purchasing can happen. It’s good for him and us.

    • Paul Continuum, go back to LA where you belong. Or Miami. Or New York. Or Atlanta. Or Seattle. Or anywhere but here. Because all you seem to be able to do is whine about something that is 100% not going to change in Philly.

      • Delco Roots says:

        Thank you, Andy. I second this comment.

      • PaulContinuum22 says:

        Nothing will change; and I’m from the 215. The bean counting will continue. They’ll lose some in the expansion draft, Paxten A. goes to Frankfurt, Wagner will possibly join Leeds. That aside, just how in the hell do you recover from such a cataclysmic end to a season? LAFC signs Bale, Chellini, Bouanga and Tello. How do you combat that?

  26. Come on, kids! Yeah, the end was not the glorious celebration we wanted. But what is So Philly is that those who only watched want to second guess what and why and how we were disappointed by an amazing game where OUR team gave it everything they had and came up a bit short. By God we had an amazing experience this season watching a team grow and come together and come into its own. Remember all those ties and stumbles early season? And those soul lifting blow-outs at the end? Watching the young-uns grow into the game? From a season ticket holder since the beginning, thank you for the joy of this season. Rest up, watch the World Cup, train hard, and see you guys in the Spring. Life’s too short to sit around and be grumpy and disrespectful (as if any one of us would have made a difference today). Go Union!

    • Yep. Canada took a hard hit on the WC by presumably losing their keeper today. He saved the day for LAFC but Canada pays the price in the tournament of all tournaments. It’s how it rolls. Nobody expects Canada or the US to win that but not qualifying is worse than not having the chance at all.

      Our team has a winning formula with a slight needed marquee twist to finalize and with lasting power due to development efforts. Marquee players saw us tonight and will want to play here to win and teach. We need to pressure Sugarman for that mix to be a perennial power of a well vested development team that needs that tweak.

      • Actually, we needed Martinez to take out their marquee player once the Union went up a goal. They could have afforded the red card and if he did a good enough job, it would have helped the US chances as well as the Union’s. (just kidding…kind of)

  27. PaulContinuum22 says:

    Somebody said on twitter that we are now the Tottenham Hotspur of MLS. Its worse than that.

  28. It hurts, the way that results from this escapist pursuit oddly do. Let’s try to remember how lucky we are to be having this conversation.

    I think the hot takes condemning the Union and its supporters to eternal despair will cool in the months ahead. Our fanatic hearts will smolder, mulling the almosts, bargaining to reverse just a single moment of what we saw last night throughout the whole winter. But the negatives will soften some as we go. That game was anybody’s. It was leaning ours. Didn’t we almost have it all?

    Cue offseason hold music (your call is important to us). Time passes. An election goes south. The US probably doesn’t win the World Cup; FIFA stays FIFA, Qatar stays Qatar. The Schwarberfest stickers degrade and unpeel from Wawa windows, replaced by a Kellier green. (Union PR team: try to get blue and gold in there?) The Eagles may or may not clear a few coin flip odds to make good on their potential. The 76ers churn steadily toward their final destination, a second round exit.

    And we get to spring, to greet a new banner in Chester: National League (sorry I mean Eastern Conference) Champions. We are going to #{%]*{]+^{ cheer for that. Let’s give this team the love it deserves sooner than then. Let’s not forget how lucky we are to have had this team all year.

    Curtin: in. Propose suitably exceptional viable alternatives or shush. McGlynn now has MLS final experience and can continue to grow his game. Real can take Wagner’s spot? Uhre can get healthy (an issue right?) Bedoya can too, and has more in the tank? Blake, Glesnes?, Elliott, Flach, Sullivan, Harriel, etc. can stay ours and learn and grow. That crazy attacking trio can grow in their telepathy. There are kids we don’t talk about yet who can play. It’s what this system does, and the chemistry and unity of purpose it builds is enough to beat any odds. We saw it last night, if we were indeed watching the same game.

    It might take a year, it might even take a few, but we’ll be back on this stage. Only this time it’ll be here. And we are going to shut the door on whatever unlucky team travels to Chester to try to spoil our home MLS Cup. And they’d better grease the Commodore Barry support columns for that day, is all I’m saying.

    • PaulContinuum22 says:

      Lucky? You call the atrocity of yesterday “LUCKY”??? Eternally wrong word. If you’re 3 minutes from a title, I’ll go up, a man up, and you can’t park the godsdamn bus, maybe you don’t deserve to win an MLS Cup. It was the choke of all chokes.

      • Whine, whine, whine.

      • My bad sir, you’ve convinced me. I’m NOT proud of the Union, I’m not sticking with the Union. As of today, I’m a scab.

        I shall only ever enjoy or be grateful for the team that wins the MLS Cup each year. For all 37 other games of the year, I’ll watch as a neutral, only slightly smiling in approval when teams go up big and park the bus.

        Go 2004-05 Patriots! Go LAFC! Go ‘Stros! Wow, that feels better, doesn’t it.

        Sincere talk: That moment (when LA got Baled out) will be something we chew on for a long time. It’s hard to root so hard for something that gets so close and not get it.

        It sucks now, but we’ll get to put it in context in due time. Dare I say think about it as a continuum? With hope for higher highs ahead. Don’t want to say there won’t be lower lows…

        Lucy’s going to @#$*(@$(# up one of these days, and we’re going to kick that football over the kite-eating tree.

  29. PaulContinuum22 says:

    Blake laid an egg. Only gave up a 3-spot just once all year (Cincy). TERRIBLE time for a sequel. He’s getting off way too easy.

  30. CCL draw tomorrow…oh how sweet it would be to get LAFC in our building for the quarters, semis or finals. It could happen, they’re all two-leg affairs. Plus we’ll have them here for a regular season game next season I assume since we played there this season.

    • Not so sure about the last point, given that they’ll probably only play 8 of 15 Western Conference teams and by that logic, this year’s game should have been in Chester since the 2020 game was in LA. MLS schedule seems pretty random that way.

      • Yeah by I assume, I mean MLS will do the right thing and schedule that game, considering that fact. So yes, that might be a bad assumption.

  31. Going into this game my Union mindset was “I want us to win, sure. But if we lose don’t make it a blowout. Give us a GAME” And I also thought when Bale scored “that’s so Union” But we sure as hell got a “GAME” Took friends to the watch party at Subaru that had never even seen a Union game. The discussion with them on the quiet walk back to our cars was how much Season Tickets go for. Stopping at a restaurant for takeout on the way home the whole counter staff came over to talk to me (still in my Union jersey) about what a F**king game that was. My 80 year old Dad is not a soccer fan but knew it was a big game for my team so he gave it a watch. I got a text from him during the break between OT halves saying “GOOD game”. Here at PSP we can get inside our own heads about the team. But I think what most people are thinking is What a F**king game.

    • My old man was texting me while I was at the park as well…haha texting me things like how many minutes is the extra time and if there is a golden goal

    • I also have a friend who only watched because I had been pumped up. He texted me: “I’ve gotta admit, this is tense”. He thought it was a great game too.

  32. I’ve been watching US soccer since my dad took me to NY Cosmos games as a kid. I live in Northern New Jersey and watch a lot of MLS, especially Red Bulls, but I don’t have a rooting interest except for teams that play attractive soccer. So I became a Union fan last couple years and was rooting for them.

    Gotta be tough for Union fans today, but man these guys did the uniform proud. The effort, composure, they played a superb game and would have probably beaten any other team in MLS history. This was the best soccer game in league history for sure.

  33. The negativity on here really amazes me. Hope they get over it by February.

    • Delco Roots says:

      Phil, I have been thinking the same thing as I read these comments. I empathize with the disappointment, for sure, but what seems like hateful comments is shocking. I hope some of the regulars on this site get back to thoughtful analysis instead of this vitriol.

    • PaulContinuum22 says:

      The reason why people are so stoking mad is that the U were THREE MINUTES AWAY. And then it turns to ashes, Yet another come-from-ahead crushing loss, and this one will stick with them for the rest of their careers. I’m realist. It will be a miracle on par with the loaves and fishes if they get back here ever again.

      • You’re pretty much the only one who is mad. The rest of us are disappointed with the final result but happy we got to witness such an amazing season.
        Mad was for last season when the league made them play with a bunch of backups.

  34. I was entertained. Disappointed, but entertained. If you can’t deal with the heartbreak of this loss then maybe you shouldn’t be so invested. We can make all the comments we want but none of us have any impact on the outcomes other than our ability to try and lift up our players when we are at games. Winning at the cost of what some of the above comments have asked is not what I’d prefer. Yes, the Union could and likely will spend more. Does the joy of winning feel better when you do a thing the right way and in a way that leads to longer term success or would you rather have the high of an occasional success followed by the long drought in between? Seems like we have some of those examples here in Philly. The other loss last night shows that $$ can sometimes get you to the end but does not guarantee a win and there can be decades between. Another Philly team that works the system with quality trades overlooked by others and that builds an identity as a team is doing well. Might they too suffer key injuries late in the season or even in a Final?

    I like the football, both kinds. Feeling okay this morning despite the disappointment. Feeling okay because I don’t have to win every argument/conversation/commute home/game of tiddlywinks with my kid. Proud of my team and hope I can help them pick their heads up because the deserve to be proud too. They played their best and put everything they had into something to entertain me and I appreciate that. If most of my fans were like PC22 I think I’d just be looking for a check with the biggest number on it. Okay to be that way, it takes all kinds, just not the way I’d want to be.

  35. I’m very disappointed at the outcome but overall it was a terrific season. I had said to my wife if Bale comes in, he’ll change the narrative (I’m mostly of Welsh heritage). He has come up big in moments time and time again.

    As Roberto Martinez said in Wales’ World Cup play in game, “….when it’s a big game or Wales, Divine intervention comes and Bale miraculously gets week and comes through.

    I really want the U to pull it out but it was not to be. A tremendous season. Looking forward to next year and what it brings.

  36. I prefer not to wallow in anger or self-pity like some on here over last night, but to look ahead.

    We have a great core group of Blake, Glesnes, Elliott, Gazdag and Carranza. The only thing I see here is Tanner needs to replace Findlay…can’t imagine Glesnes and Elliott getting through another year uninjured.

    As to the (rumored) leavers, I’m not fussed that Aaronson may be going. At this point he’s only potential, and has been living off his brother’s reputation for me. The other possible young leaver, McGlynn, I’m ok with that too. He is an otherworldly passer, but his fatal flaw is no foot speed, which you can’t coach into him. He’s a plodder, will always be, and that will always put a lot of pressure on the outside back behind him.

    I think Wagner deserves his move to Europe, with our thanks, and will be very hard to replace. I hope Tanner has something up his sleeve—it will be critical going forward.

    Lately Mbaizo has been rumored to leave. He showed me a lot in taking his early season benching and came back stronger. I think Harriel is ready as a replacement, fortunately.

    Of the others, I think it’s time for Martinez to go. At 29, his market value is as high as it will ever be, and will begin to decline. He has so much heart and skill, but also makes horrible mistakes. His pass to Gazdag was sublime, but it only cancelled out his horrible bonehead foul that led directly to McGlynn’s Unfortunate Header. Can Tanner find a short term replacement until that Red Star kid, Odana, is ready?

    Also, can somebody teach Flach some offensive skills? Great defensively, obviously coachable (they got him to stop the stupid slide tackles he was so partial to in his first year), but he’s too one-dimensional for a championship team right now.

    And can someone explain Uhre to me? How can a full pro never play the full 90? Or does Curtin just want to play Burke (who I hope stays) 20 minutes every game?

    Bedoya will be great as a part-timer for another year. That leaves Sullivan, who, as a winger, doesn’t really fit the system, but could he become an Ilsinho-type flash scorer?

    Finally, there’s Curtin. After Berhalter is sacked after a disastrous WC, will they come for him? I hope he’s smart enough not to take that, nor some other European job. He’s been great for us, complainers on here be damned.

    Sorry for the long post. But I think the future, with a few clever acquisitions in the next few months, remains bright.

    • Nothing wrong with the long post. Hopefully Craig will get some more playing time next season rather than just sitting on the bench behind Glesnes and Elliott. He can also replace Wagner on free kicks. That being said, depth at center back is a big need.
      Regarding Uhre, I think the combination of early injury and lack of an offseason was big. Ideally, getting a couple of months rest before training starts will do him a world of good.

    • Forgot to mention regarding Curtin, I don’t think he’d be a good fit for the national team. He’s done great getting 20+ players to put the team first and play together. That’s a lot harder with the egos of the national team.

  37. It was an amazing game by two great teams, one that will be remembered a long time. All else aside, that’s worth keeping in mind.

    • Agreed. And an amazing season by the Union. 4 MLS best 11 players. 4 end of season award winners. 4 wins by 6 or more goals (which matches the total in the entire 2021-22 Premier League, as well as the 2021-22 Bundesliga, and was 3 more than the entire 2021-22 La Liga).
      A season where they trailed at home for a total of 34 minutes including the playoffs. (To put that in perspective, they led in LA for over 60 minutes.)

  38. Welll..well..well…no one wants to talk about how LAFC first goal took place ???? Our golden boy Martinez who you all think is magical has a shitty giveaway at midfield then the fucking hothead rushes back to foul in the center of the pitch top of the 18, just as he’s shown every single fucking game….LA was given a superb opportunity early on took it and there you go the first goal should have never been conceded…ohhhh and btw watch the tape on their second goal as well and you’ll see the great Martinez completely lose his mark allowing a free header …but hey let’s get on Elliot for not competing with an international star after scoring two goals.

    • You had me worried that you were going to blame McGlynn for that first goal…
      I do think several people have mentioned Martinez as having issues yesterday. As you point out, it’s not the first time it has happened, especially in a big game. In Mexico City against Club America comes to mind.

    • Martinez is the biggest whipping post on this page wtf are you going on about?

      He had a bad game everyone knows that. No one postulates he may be playing through injuries no one makes excuses for him. His play is very much out there to be appreciated and criticized.

      Flach and McGlynn had bad games too. The midfield was overrun. Gassed. Bedoya was very much missed and they needed fresh legs.

      Very surprised Bedoya couldn’t come on late for a lift and help manage the game out.

  39. FCdelcofella says:

    Once bale tied it you knew we were cooked. We gave it our best but it wasn’t good enough. How you don’t have 6-7 men in the box in the last 10 minutes baffles me. The amount of space Bale had was amazing. He almost looked liked he was smiling before he headed it in. Can’t Blame Jack. Dude scored 2 goals. MOTM has to be Martinez. He lost his mark twice leading to LA goals. Curtain is a poor man’s Andy Reid for Philly. Super nice guy and a players coach but doesn’t have “it”. Maybe. He’ll win with a club that spends more $.

    • I think he’d do worse with a club spending lots of money. He’s good with guys who play for the front of the jersey rather than the back.

      • FCdelcofella says:

        Keep thinking that mate. We lack depth. I’m not saying you have to be top 5-7 in spending but you need to be in the top half. Plus, with all the sick, old _ _ _ money in Philly/ Montco, you’d think we could figure out something. Union champions 2023… who’s with me? Otherwise this could be a massive drop off next season.

  40. I agree…I don’t think anyone is a good fit for the national team at this point. And I would hate for him to go to Europe and take the abuse like Marsch, just because he’s “American.”

  41. Yes, it’s weird. Leaving Subaru last night, I heard a lot of disappointment, and no vitriol towards Curtin and the team. I guess the real fans know the true score.

  42. Union never gave up.Great Comeback. Penalty Kicks are always flip of the coin I am completely drained.Still Don’t understand why Martinez or Kai were among the first 3 for PKs. Did not see where Elliot and Aaronson ? Or Mc Glynn? We’re. Felt terrible for Gazdag . LAFC fans are dirtblls.Pelting Wagner with bottles on Corner kicks.Felt like I was watching US versus a third world Central American team with no class. Union were the better team who played with class.Vela should win the academy award for most whining and fake injuries.

    • McGlynn had been subbed for Aaronson. Offensive options were Carranza (who I’m guessing was slated for 5th), Aaronson, and Donovan.

  43. Having read all of the previous posts, Here are a few of my observations on “the morning after”:

    1) I was sorry to have not been able to go to the watch party at the Soob, but I was committed to my 8-1/2 year old grandson’s match at 3:00. In a harbinger of things to come, he had a brace of goals and a hat trick of posts. His reaction: “I hate it when that happens.”

    2) By any measure, this was the Union’s greatest single season. It has been three years in the making. Now they have a solid nucleus of frontline and backup players and they appear to be in a position to be a top tier MLS team for years to come. I like their business model, which to be sure, is most dependent upon Ernst Tanner’s scouting success combined with an excellent youth academy. I like their style of play and I like the character of the team. I was happy to see the justly-deserved victory over NYCFC in person, which validated the quality of this team.

    3) In my conversations with my British friends who watch a lot of (proper) football, they regard MLS as on par with the English Championship division. I think that is fairly accurate because there is a lot of parity with the bottom 5 teams in EPL and the top 5 teams in Championship. I would argue that the most important match played in England every year is the Championship’s promotional match played at Wembley Stadium at the conclusion of the 4-team tournament (3rd through 6th place). The winner gets promoted (and revenues of around $300M a year) and the loser gets nothing. Imagine how you would feel if you supported the losing team in that match. The Union and LAFC played yesterday’s match as though such a prize was on the line and it was compelling. The fact is that there is not very much difference in these two teams. My own feeling is that the match was lost because of LAFC’s playing at home; had the match been at the Soob, I think the outcome would have been different.

    4) Re: Jose Martinez. After his outstanding performance in last year’s Eastern Conference final and seeing him in tears afterwards, I vowed never to criticize him again. He is an extremely talented player who sometimes makes glaring mistakes on the field. But, they are usually mistakes of commission, not omission, and I can live with that. He and Leon Flach are instrumental in keeping teams to the outside and not allowing great chances in the middle. I was surprised to see him taking a penalty because his accuracy is often lacking. He put it on frame and it was well-saved. I agree with Andy Muenz that Jose is probably at the end of his prime time run with the Union. With all of his flaws, I for one will miss him should he leave.

    5) Before the game, I predicted that the Union’s chances would be determined by how well Olivier Mbaizo played, and I think in retrospect, that was accurate. He was very solid on the right while doing well in the attack. LAFC scored no goals from the run of play, and that is a credit to their defense. Until yesterday, the Union had defended set pieces and corners extremely well. The first LAFC goal was freakish. Though I am not a fan of Kellyn Acosta, he is the best free kick taker on the USMNT.

    6) Gareth Bale is a world-class striker whose career has been marred by injuries. That he would score the equalizer on a set piece was not a surprise. When the USA play Wales, the defense need to know where he is on the field for the entire 90 minutes.

    7) As for the haters among you, I feel sorry for you that you seemingly have so much invested in what is a game played by others, not yourselves.

    8) I was surprised at the selection of penalty takers for both sides, but particularly the Union after Gazdag, who deservedly was called on to take the first shot. In the Nashville game last year, Elliott and McGlynn took penalties for the Union and I thought that we would see a repeat of that. After Blake saved the first penalty and Daniel Gazdag stepped up, I thought that the Union would win, but the soccer gods had other ideas with Gazdag’s unfortunate slip.

    9) The margin between these two clubs is razor thin. I hate it when games are decided on penalties, but after 120 minutes, something has to give. And I prefer the 30 minutes of overtime without the “Golden Goal,” even though that would have favored the Union yesterday.

    10) I am on board for next year and I look forward to seeing some of the academy products like Quinn Sullivan on the field.

    • I’m pretty sure the Bale goal was run of play rather than set piece (unless you’re counting an offsides flag as setting up a set piece).
      McGlynn didn’t take a PK because he had been substituted off.

      • Right you are as usual, Andy. I had to watch the highlights (and I waited a day to do so). The Bale goal was definitely from the run of play and I hope that GGG makes that moment required watching for the USMNT.

  44. Still here in LA. Anyone who did not come missed a great trip. Philly Sports Trips did an amazing job organizing the hotel, busses and tailgate. The tailgate almost got cancelled but they found a soccer field near the stadium where we had the tailgate and where we had a great time from 9am till circa 12pm. Met many interesting Union supporters there and in the hotel. One had been to all the finals, even to the one in Mexico City: boy was as he devastated! The interesting thing was that LA’s last goal happened just below our section. The cross that was headed into the goal by Bale should never have materialized. Mbaizo and I think Aaronson were defending and both were trying too hard to win the ball rather than just kick it out of bounds. The winger was somehow able to beat them both and keep the ball from going over the end line before crossing the ball to Bale.
    Was a great game and glad I made the trip. Was pleasantly surprised to see how many had made it to LA. Looking forward to next year!

  45. PaulContinuum22 says:

    Nothing will change; and I’m from the 215. The bean counting will continue. They’ll lose some in the expansion draft, Paxten A. goes to Frankfurt, Wagner will possibly join Leeds. That aside, just how in the hell do you recover from such a cataclysmic end to a season? LAFC signs Bale, Chellini, Bouanga and Tello. How do you combat that? You can’t.

  46. PaulContinuum22 says:

    As for McCarthy, he can GFH. Where was this Courtois-esque PK saving at the end of the 2015 Open Cup final? And why did Curtin pull Blake out of that shootout in the first place?

  47. I was unable to attend the Soob watch party. I have not watched the game replay as we are just getting home from the weekend away. Kept checking in on the web,the game must have been awesome to see live! I’m quite surprised by the negative posts. Makes me laugh tho. I guess I’m not a rabid fan who is only satisfied with winning. Yes its more fun to win. Yes its more fun to have big name expensive players. But those players don’t always equal success. And teams don’t all have the funds for them. I’m damn proud of the Union! The season was so much fun. It sucks to go out that way. But we got to the final by playing some great footie. And now we have an identity that the fans can grasp onto! Can’t wait for next season!!

  48. Still gutted as I’m sure you all are. Hard to process everything that went down in that amazingly heart-wrenching match…
    So happy with the Union. What an amazing campaign with so many brilliant matches and so much joy spilling out from the stadium – none more so than after winning the Eastern Conference last week.
    They’ll be back in next year with another good shot at the cup. I’m very glad to be a UNION supporter.

  49. PaulContinuum22 says:

    After 13 years of agony and heartache, its not enough to get there. You need to win. The journey isn’t sufficient anymore. What’s happening now is just I daresay, Pollyanna talk from all of you. THEY HAD IT MADE. And they couldn’t close the deal. That’s gonna stick with this team for the rest of their careers.
    And as for recognition around the country, the Union are getting it, sure; by being lumped in with the Phillies on the worst sports day in this city’s history. Two championships lost in a 5-hour span. Never before did that happen. But of course it had to happen HERE. So prototypically Philadelphia.

    • el Pachyderm says:

      Correct Paul. the last sentence is the only thing you have said of value at all. EVER. Congratulations. Philadelphia IS the archetype of futility.
      Now… Fuck Off but have a nice day.

    • By this logic, Jordan should have just retired after his Bulls were bounced in game 7 of the eastern conference finals by the Pistons. Just bin it right there. Or closer to our sport, Milan might have just called it quits as a club after blowing a 3-goal lead to Liverpool in the ’05 Champions League Final. Good thing they showed up for the rematch in ’07.

  50. As I said in an earlier post, I believe the Union have the core group to ensure future success. However, the rumors about the selling off some of the important (but secondary) players—Wagner mostly, but Aaronson, McGlynn, Mbaizo, maybe Martinez)—will present challenges. The rest of the division/league will surely be moving forward and improving—will the Union? I think it will take some bold and adept moves from Tanner et al to meet the challenge. Hope he/they are up to it.

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