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Player ratings: Austin FC 2-2 Philadelphia Union

Photo: Marjorie Elzey

The Union fought back on the road to salvage a point against Austin FC. Spotted an early lead from a Daniel Gazdag-taken PK, the Union squandered the advantage early in the second half before a Mikael Uhre tap-in saved a point. Here is how the Boys in Blue rated Saturday night.

GK Andre Blake – 5

Blake had an average-at-best night for a keeper the Union have come to rely on to win them an extra two points in matches like this one. He failed to register a save while conceding two goals, though the Union’s defense was leaky at best on both goals. Blake was his usual confident self attacking corners and crosses lofted high into the six-yard box, but that was not enough on a so-so night to warrant two more points or a higher score.

CB Jack Elliott – 5

While it is hard to specifically fault Elliott on either of Austin FC’s goals, the normally unflappable center back turned in another average performance. Elliott was half a stride away from the deflected cross that led to Austin’s first goal, while allowing Diego Rubio to sneak in behind him for an open header on goal. On the second goal, Elliott was caught in no-man’s land, looking lost in the center of the box.  He also struggled to connect on long aerial passes out of the defensive third, repeatedly returning the ball to Austin. 

CB Damion Lowe – 5

Credit needs to be given for deflecting a shot that otherwise was heading on net (though Blake was in position and Wagner was guarding the goal line) in the 43′ minute, but what was a gutsy play could have just as easily been a disastrous own-goal. In the second half, the deflected cross leading to Austin’s first goal eluded Lowe’s outstretched leg in the center of the eighteen-yard box. A few minutes later Lowe missed deflecting the cross that led to Austin’s second goal. 

LB Kai Wagner – 6

Wagner deserves an assist (thought he was not officially awarded one) for winning the PK that led to the Union’s first goal, but other than that it was an average night for a left back the Union have come to rely upon for exceptional play. He failed to win any tackles on the night, though a sliding recovery saved what could have been a one on one attack against Blake.  His crosses were less accurate than on a better night, stalling attacks down the left. 

RB Nathan Harriel – 7

Harriel turned in another unassuming and solid game, winning balls in the air, heading clearances, and making interceptions when called upon. The only criticism defensively was being a second too late attacking John Gallagher on Austin’s second goal. Offensively, it was a quiet night for the right back, as both his crosses on the night were off target and he only had three touches in the Austin box.

DM Jose Martinez – 7

Another solid performance from the defensive midfielder. Martinez was fouled as many times as he was called for fouls (three), and was not one of the five Union players shown a yellow card. Defensively, Martinez gobbled up space in the middle, forcing Austin’s attacks to the wings. On the ball he was very accurate passing, including long balls into the attacking third.

RM Quinn Sullivan – 7

Sullivan played another good game, though failing to notch a goal or assist. Starting the game on the right, he often led the attack into Austin’s half. When Alejandro Bedoya subbed on for Mikael Uhre, Sullivan moved up top to join Carranza as a striker, and he was less effective. As usual, his passing was among the most accurate on the night, though it was his pressing without the ball and defensive work rate that earned him a solid 7.

LM Jack McGlynn – 8

Once again McGlynn did not make any flashy plays, though he turned in what was arguably the best performance on the night. He led the Union in both passing percentage and number of accurate passes made, and led both teams in tackles won. McGlynn won all but one ball for which he challenged. Offensively, he launched more passes into the final third than any other player, was accurate on his crosses, attacked on the dribble well and was not dispossessed on the night. Though the statistics (assists and goals) may not reflect it, it was a yeoman’s effort and a very good night for the left midfielder. 

AM Dániel Gazdag – 8

Once again Gazdag stepped up to the penalty spot, and once again he converted. While he did score from the spot and created a couple of good chances, it was his recoveries that stood out on the night. Like Sullivan and McGlynn, the numbers don’t always represent the importance a player had on the pitch, as Gazdag’s pressing and work on defensive often goes unnoticed. 

FWD Julián Carranza – 7

If the score for the night was reflective of the effort turned in by Carranza, he would warrant an 8. He created more chances than Gazdag or Mikael Uhre, had six touches in the Austin box, and led the Union in shots with five. Carranza failed, however, to convert any of his shots, including two from in front of the net. Ultimately, a striker needs to put the ball in the back of the next, and so he earns a 7 for his performance.  

FWD Mikael Uhre – 7

Uhre scored the tying goal on a tap-in as he was about to be subbed off for the night. Other than the goal, his best chances on the night were both marred by being in offside positions, and he only touched the ball twice in the Austin box. That said, a striker needs to score, and Uhre saved the Union a point with a goal. 


(68’) Alejandro Bedoya – 6

Bedoya came into the game for Uhre after the Union conceded two goals, replacing Sullivan on the right side of the diamond. In his thirty-one minutes on the pitch (twenty-two plus injury time) he only had one offensive touch in the Austin box, but he tied Martinez as second on the Union for number of tackles (trailing only McGlynn) and seemed to settle the defensive woes that plagued the Union to start the second half.

(86’) Chris Donovan – NA

Subbed on to replace Sullivan, he brought fresh legs to close out the game as Austin pushed hard for a winner. Donovan pushed the ball upfield, helping run the clock down.

Geiger Counter

Referee Wesley Costa – 7

Perhaps a bit too heavy-handed with the yellow cards, Costa turned in a decent substitute performance. Ultimately, with VAR’s assistance, got the penalty call correct.

Player of the Match – Jack McGlynn

The teenager continues to turn in performances that perhaps escape the recognition he deserves, particularly on the defensive side where McGlynn shows improvement. More than once his defensive position covered for Wagner being out of position.

What’s Next…

The Philadelphia Union will travel to Portland to face the Timbers on Saturday at 10:30 pm ET at Providence Park. The game will be shown on Apple TV.


  1. Andy Muenz says:

    I believe Martinez did pick up a yellow, albeit for an actual foul as compared with his usual antics during a dead ball situation.
    I would give Donovan a score and it would be a good one for taking the ball upfield and laying off a pass into the box which was centered for Carranza for what should have been a go ahead goal.

    • I can’t fault Carranza for taking that shot, but the way Donovan was running onto the ball, he had a much better opportunity than Carranza did.

      • Andy Muenz says:

        I wasn’t faulting Carranza, I was complimenting Donovan on the run up the field that setup the play.

  2. good write up. i missed this one and this helps gauging the talent.

  3. That Lowe yellow card was more than a little heavy handed.

  4. A 5 for Blake?

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