Bakary Soumare returns to game action in reserves defeat
Bakary Soumare’s highly-anticipated return to action offered some consolation at Stade Saputo today as Philadelphia Union’s young reserve side slipped to a disappointing 5-1 defeat at the hands of Montreal Impact.
The towering Malian, donning Union colors for the first time since arriving from French side US Boulogne in June, gained valuable match fitness in central defense, playing all 90 minutes as he continues his progress towards first team contention.
Despite listing Soumare from the start, the Philadelphia backline couldn’t prevent the effervescent Sanna Nyassi from bagging a first-half hat-trick however, with Montreal adding two more goals against ten-man Union following Porfirio Lopez’s dismissal after the break.
The measured early stages were closely contested and were heightened only by a Josh Gardner shot which skidded a fraction wide of Chris Konopka’s left-hand post and a half-chance which was sliced over by Shavar Thomas.
But the game was to burst into life after 12 minutes; Nyassi’s opener for the hosts becoming the catalyst for three goals in just four minutes.
The Gambian winger’s first – a clipped finish over the advancing Konopka – was met with an immediate Union response as Jorge Perlaza streaked away from the Impact defenders to lift the ball beautifully over Evan Bush with a deft chip with 15 minutes on the clock.
It was to be only the briefest moment of joy for the visitors, however, with Nyassi restoring the home side’s advantage within 60 seconds. Lamar Neagle tried his luck from outside the box and the ball deflected fortuitously off the shins of Nyassi, rendering Konopka stranded as it nestled in the corner.
The Union were given a lifeline in the 22nd minute when Jimmy McLaughlin was brought crashing to the turf in the Impact box but Bush guessed correctly to expertly tip the youngster’s subsequent spot kick wide.
And Nyassi increased the deficit to complete his hat-trick with less than half an hour played; the winger tucking home a neat finish from Dennis Iapichino’s accurate low cross with 29 minutes played.
Just as the first team had on the same ground less than 24 hours earlier, the Union Reserves started the second half on the front foot, with the energetic Jimmy McLaughlin and Jorge Perlaza unsettling the home defense on a number of occasions.
But their uphill task was to get notably steeper shortly after the hour-mark; the referee issuing a straight red card to Porfirio Lopez for a challenge on Cuban forward Eduardo Sebrango close to the byline.
The hosts – buoyed by fresh legs from the bench – would ultimately make their man advantage count. Sinisa Ubiparipovic almost added to the score in the 71st minute with a low strike which thudded off Konopka’s post and it was four less than 60 seconds later; substitute Anthony Jackson-Hamel advancing clear through the inside-left channel before beating Konopka from close range with options to his right.
He grabbed his second five minutes later to round off a disappointing trip for Philadelphia, slamming a shot high into the Union net from 16 yards to give the final score some gloss.