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Heart Stoppage

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Philadelphia Union 2- 1 New England Revolution
August 28, 2010

I started the evening trying to check out the game at one of the Union’s pub partners.  I got there, found that the game was on all the screens, but no one was paying any attention.  There was also other music playing on the speaker system, so you couldn’t hear anything.  I didn’t stay long and went home to watch the game on tv.  Maybe some other time when there isn’t a Saturday night dinner crowd.

The field in New England looked okay.  At least Kraft is trying to remove the gridiron lines for the Revs games.  The crowd was also concentrated in the stadium in a way that looks good on tv even if there are large sections of empty seats.

The Union looked tentative early in the game, but with much better defensive discipline. I was afraid that the difficult season was beginning to take its toll on the team’s confidence.  The Union fell behind 0-1 in the first half on a goal by Ilija Stolica. Finally, a break went the Union’s way when Cory Gibbs was sent off for a hard tackle on Eduardo Coudet.

The Union continued to press ahead with their man advantage.  A couple of subs made as big difference. A beautiful ball from Justin Mapp led to Jack McInerney’s second goal of the season.  Jack was able to celebrate this one. Another beautiful ball from Justin Mapp in stoppage time resulted in the game winning goal.  The Union got their first win in over six games. The one downside was  the continued lack of a shutout.

I have always felt that making the MLS playoffs was an ambitious goal for a “from scratch” expansion team. I would be happy with a mid table result in the Eastern Conference.  This is still an achievable objective over the remainder of the season.

In other news, it was announced during the first half that PPL Park will host the U.S. Men’s National Team vs. Colombia on October 12.  This is in addition to the U.S. Women’s game against China on October 7.  I don’t know about you, but I’ll be there, and hopefully near my regular seats.  You know they really didn’t want to play the Colombia game in New York.  It looks like my crazy July will be repeated by a crazy October.

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