Union in Search of Earlier Form
CHESTER, Pa. - Last Sunday’s loss to D.C. United was easily the Philadelphia Union’s worst outing of the season. Just ask Manager Peter Nowak.
"I think that was the worst performance I’ve seen in the eight months with this team," Nowak said after the game. "We have to be real about the situation that this stuff is not going to fly with me.”
With their manager’s sentiments in their mind, the Union head up to Gillette Stadium this weekend to take on the New England Revolution, knowing that their lethargic and flat performance in Washington must be forgotten.
“It’s behind us now and we have to concern ourselves with the next game,” Union forward Alejandro Moreno said on Wednesday. “It’s a tough matchup against a team that tends to be pretty physical and they don’t allow you to play in the middle of the field.
"It’s going to be a difficult match but we’ve been working pretty hard to try and correct some of the things that have gone wrong in the last few weeks.”
Individual mistakes and an inability to finish chances has hampered the side in recent games. This has resulted in a six-match winless streak, despite periods when they have played decent soccer.
“You just try to learn from your mistakes and we know we can play much better than we did on Sunday,” Coach John Hackworth said. “You try to regain that and you work at it. You don’t get too crazy upset that that’s how your team is always.”
And the Union have not struggled always. Earlier in the season, the side had a good run of form going unbeaten in the league in late June and through all of July, aside from a 2-1 loss to the San Jose Earthquakes.
“We’re trying to look back and see the things that made us successful at times during the year and make sure we go back to those things that make us the team that we are,” Moreno said.
“At times we’ve gone away from that and we’ve been punished. The challenge for this week is can we be physical and compete throughout the game and can we be passionate and committed throughout 90 minutes.”
Simply competing has been tougher away from Philadelphia. So far this season, the Union have managed just one win and one draw in 11 away matches.
“I guess the final test is if we can get a result on the road,” Moreno concluded.