The Philadelphia Union (11-7-6, 39 Pts, 2nd Place on goal differential, Eastern Conference) looked to get back into first place, on the road at DC United (9-6-9, 36 Pts, 4th Place). DC would take over first place with a W as the two teams were tied in GD (5).
It would be the visitors night as the Union dominated from the start, and a Red Card to DC, their only caution of the night, late in the first half was a big turning point in the important and impressive 5-1 Union Win.
DC United Starting XI: 3,4,2,1
G Bill Hamid, Ds Frédéric Brillant, Donovan Pines, Steven Birnbaum, MFs Leonardo Jara, Chris Durkin, Júnior Moreno, Lucas Rodríguez, Fs Paul Arriola, Luciano Acosta, Wayne Rooney
Union Starting XI: 4,1,2,1,2
GK Andre Blake; Ds Aurelien Collin, Jack Elliott, Kai Wagner, Raymon Gaddis; MFs Haris Medunjanin, Alejandro Bedoya (C), Marco Fabián, Warren Creavalle; Fs Andrew Wooten, Kacper Przybylko
Wooten was making his first ever MLS start and got involved immediately. He began the opening goal sequence by passing it to Fabian, who then sent it back to Bedoya, just outside the box. The Captain blasted it off the post, but at the right angle to go in for his 3rd goal of the season. 3′
Yes that is the Union’s own J. P. Dellacamera with the call on FX1.
Marco Fabian picked up his first assist of the season on the goal.
After the goal Medunjanin took the time to say what many in the United States feel after this past weekend.
As typical in an Eastern Conference tilt, there was plenty of rough play, with DC making most of the fouls, but somehow only the U were given cards, three yellows in that first half.
But it was the only card of the night for DC, a straight Red to Moreno for knocking Kacper down on an “obvious scoring opportunity” in the 40′, that made a difference. It started as a Yellow and a PK, but was turned red by VAR.
Pryz would miss the PK, but the tide was turned towards the U.
Another Tic-Tac-Toe Doop made it 2-Nil 45′ + 2′ Haris-Wagner- Fabian for the easy tap in.
16-1 Shots, 7-0 on Target in favor of the U,and four cards, but the only one on DC a Red, pretty much tells you all you need to know about the rough and tumble first half.
Just because DC was down a man the action did not stop in the second half.
The U added on with a fairly easy Doop after a turnover caused by their High Press. Creavalle to Kacper this time to make it 3-Nil. 52′
The ref kept handing out yellows to the Union. This time on the FK after the last yellow to Collin in the 53′, DC answered right back to make it a bit more interesting as the goal by Brillant made it 3-1. 54′
But despite DC playing better than they did most of the first half at full strength, the U piled on two more goals.
The one to make it 4-1 was a Brace for Fabian as DC was looking a bit tired after those good chances. 70′ 4-1 Boys In White.
To ice the game FaFa playing the role of Super Sub scored 90′, for the eventual 5-1 final.
DC United Cards:
Moreno Straight Red Denial of obvious goal scoring opportunity 40′
DC United Subs:
Joseph Mora for Durkin – Injury 16′
Chris Odoi-Atsem for Pines 52′
Ulises Segura for Arriola 69′
Jamiro Monteiro for Creavalle 56′
Ilsinho for Wooten 69′
Fafa Picault on for Fabian 80′
Every road W in MLS is big, but this one was very impressive against a team not far behind in the standings, and after the U were steamrolled in the last two road games. The did a good job of keeping their cool as the ref piled yellows on them, helped out by constant bending of the ref’s ear by Rooney, and DC kept fouling. At any point tempers could have flared, but they did not. Even after DC scored a man down to make it a two goal game, they kept the pressure on and won going away. They should be able to use that in the big road games to come down the stretch.
With all the goals, they also cut a bit into the GD advantage Atlanta United FC had on them.
Here are the Live standings as of this posting.
The Union (12-7-6, 42 Pts, 1st Place Eastern Conference) return home next Sunday to face the Houston Dynamo (9-11-3, 30 Points, 9th Place, Western Conference). Houston will be coming in after playing on Wednesday 8/8/19 at NYCFC (9-4-8, 35 Pts, 5th Place Eastern Conference).