Player ratings / Union

Player ratings: Philadelphia Union 3–1 New England Revolution

Photo: Marjorie Elzey

Saturday’s opener in the new first-round, best-of-three playoff series kicked off with a bang.

The Union ran out 3–1 winners over the Revs in a game that felt like a return to form. While the momentum tailed off in the second half for the hosts, it was a very strong way to open the postseason. Here’s how the players performed.

Author’s note: A reminder that, for my ratings, a 5 is average—neither helping nor hurting the team—so anything above that is a good performance and anything less . . . is not.

Player ratings

Andre Blake — 8

Blake was a solid 7 before the late save on Bobby Wood’s effort that would have pulled NE within one goal. Not really called on much outside of that. Decent distribution and had no chance on New England’s goal.

Kai Wagner — 8

1.5 assists and largely locked down his side. Very good game from him. Hopefully Philly fans will get another season or two of Wagner, but it’s not looking like it’s to be. So, let’s savor what the German has brought to this team while we can.

Jack Elliott — 6

Elliott was untroubled, for the most part. He stepped out of defense a couple of times and looked like he might create something, but it never really happened. However, his doing so also never put the Union under pressure either. Didn’t make waves, and that’s usually a good thing for a center back.

Damion Lowe — 6

Similar night to Elliott, in a good way. Lowe was very solid and will need a few more performances like that with Jakob Glesnes out. Played within himself. The back four shape brings out the best in him, while not removing his assertiveness or ability to step forward with the ball.

Nate Harriel – 7

Would have been an 8, what with the goal and his otherwise-dominant defensive display, but it was his poor touch that let NE in, and he then got cooked by Bou while trying to make up for his first mistake. Great night outside those fifteen seconds. While he does not contribute to the offensive passing game in the same way as Olivier Mbaizo, his ability to get goals from set plays and better defense make him a worthwhile alternative.

José Martínez — 6

A good night for Brujo, but maybe a bit lucky Gil went off. It prevented him from earning his yellow card a lot sooner. Had one of his shots gone in, the score would have gone up, but he really knits the team together in the middle. Could be convinced to go higher based on that alone, honestly.

Jack McGlynn — 6

Like Martinez, McGlynn had a strong performance without a highlight. Looks much more solid defensively than in the past. He rarely gets blown by or caught out of position anymore. Smart cookie.

Alejandro Bedoya – 6

Again, a very solid shift. Came close to getting a goal or assist on multiple occasions but they never quite came off.

Dániel Gazdag — 7

Linked with his attacking fellows well until after the break and took his penalty with expected ease. The man is a better PK taker than anyone I have ever seen. So consistent. Would have liked to see him help get the fourth goal to settle things but couldn’t connect.

Mikael Uhre — 7

Arguably his best game of the season. Got a goal, yes, but was consistently dangerous with his movement and physicality, as well. Seemed more present offensively than he has been for much of the season. Very encouraging.

Julián Carranza — 7

Was going to give a 6 but, considering how the team struggled to execute offensively once he came off, it’s clear his value to the team should not be understated. Such a talent and fits this team like a glove.


Quinn Sullivan – 5

Had some nice moves with the ball at his feet and one walloped shot, but not very effective ultimately. A player who could really use some extended minutes to show his potential.

Leon Flach – 5

Looked fine, didn’t need to do much of note. Good to get him back healthy.

Chris Donovan – 5

Ran around.

Geiger Counter

Pierre-Luc Lauziere — 8

I was relatively impressed, all things considered. Gave cards when deserved, didn’t get into it with players, and went to the VAR screen to give the pen. Didn’t get drawn in by the silly stuff at the end.

Man of the Match — Kai Wagner

This was a little tough, as the win was very much a team thing, but Wagner was at the very heart of what the Union did well so the laurel goes to him.


  1. Fair assessments and no arguments here.
    Does anyone know why Makhanya wasn’t on the bench Saturday and whether he’ll be available for game 2 in case something happens to Lowe or Elliott?

  2. I give McGlynn a bit higher. He plays the pass to Kai that leads to the goal. Beautiful stuff there.
    I don’t fault Harriel (too harshly) for a bad touch, it happens, but man, you gotta wipe Bou out there. Take the yellow, if you have to. You rather the free kick than let him dribble at people.

    • Jeremy Lane says:

      That’s fair about McGlynn. Basically a secondary assist. And agreed about Harriel. He may not need to take Bou out, but he can’t let his anxiety about his mistake bait him into jumping at Bou’s moves. Just deny goal. No need for a tackle.

  3. The Schmave says:

    Kai deserved a 9. His best offensive game of the year as he had one official assist and deserves more than .5 credit for assist on Uhre’s rebound goal. He also saved a goal on defense as the only man back after a clumsy give away. Pay Kai Wagner chants were warranted!!

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