Play-by-play Plus: Union finish grueling eight day slate strong, shift focus to Montreal
Wins over Chicago highlight three games in eight nights.
Saturday's win over the Chicago Fire accomplished a few much needed things. It ended the tough eight day stretch with a win, which is always important, as you move forward to the next game.
It was also a much needed win at home, since the club has had more road success than at home in 2013. Last, but not least, the win versus Chicago was also important because it came on the heels of a 4-1 loss Wednesday against the two-time MLS defending champion Galaxy.
That loss was more frustrating to the team since it was level with Los Angeles after 70 minutes before allowing three goals over the last 20 minutes. Saturday's 1-0 win over the Fire was the second straight for the Union against their Eastern Conference rivals, both won by shutout, both won on game winning goals by 20-year-old scoring sensation Jack McInerney.
The win kept the Union in fifth place in MLS’ Eastern Conference allowing them to stay ahead of Columbus and New England, who each won on the weekend.
On the plus side for the Union:
Zac MacMath looked strong in goal, making six saves; including an excellent second half save on Dilly Duka.
Bakary Soumare made his third consecutive start and was named The Defensive Player of the Game on our Comcast television presentation.
Despite more attention paid to him by the opponent, McInerney again found a way to score. His eight goals continue to lead MLS, as do his five game winners (a Union record). The Union have won five games this season, all won on Jack's game winning goals.
Sebastien Le Toux, in his second straight start came up with a solid 90, which included three shots, and the assist on the lone goal of the game. For Seba, while the goals have not been forthcoming, it's his third game winning assist, which ties him for the league lead.
One other note, a 71 minute performance from Kleberson will help him with his match fitness, as well as help to get his teammates on the same page that he's on. The Brazilian is one of the more gifted passers on this club whose vision on the field makes this club more dangerous.
The Union can now look at rest and recovery – two words that were not in their vocabulary just one week ago. This Saturday, they head to Montreal for a game versus the dangerous Impact.
Montreal, under new head coach Marco Schallibaum has a 6-2-2 record, good for 20 points and a fourth place position in the East. Troy Perkins is a dependable MLS goalkeeper who is keeping the club in games with a 1.10 goals against average.
The offense is led by veteran Italian striker Marco DiVaio who has six goals this season. Patrice Bernier, Felipe and former Union winger Justin Mapp are all players to watch on a Montreal side that has yet to lose at home in five games, with four wins and a draw, outscoring opponents, 11-4.
Join Alejandro Moreno and myself for the call on Comcast SportsNet beginning at 7 p.m. this Saturday.