After such a convincing win at PPL Park last week against the Sounders, it’s tough to blame Union captain Danny Califf for being a little unsatisfied with a 1-1 tie on the road against Chivas USA Saturday night.
Rookie Danny Mwanga put the Union up in the 21st minute, and the Union had earned three points each of the other two times they scored first. But Blair Gavin’s blast before the break leveled the match at one goal apiece, and neither side were able to muster a game-winner in the second half.
“I think we were trying to ride the emotion that we had at the home opener, but it’s difficult to carry that emotion 3000 miles and it was a tough night,” he said. “I feel like we played well in spurts and then we didn’t play well in long stretches as well. I think overall it was tough to carry over that energy but we managed a result and that’s a good thing and we can use that going forward.”
Califf knows that earning points on the road is never easy, but he also knows Philadelphia will have to take three more frequently if the club hopes to makes a playoff push.
“I don’t think we’re satisfied with one point on the road anymore,” Califf said. “I think we’re a better team than that, and I think we’re a better team than we showed, certainly, tonight. Sometimes you go on the road and you can take a point when you don’t play your best, and I think tonight is one of those nights.”
While Philadelphia had chances to score a second goal, most notably a questionable foul call on Mwanga right before he found the back of the net again and a breakaway for Fred in the second half, they also were saved by the bar on a few occasions.
“There’s a lot of room for improvement on tonight’s performance,” Califf added. “I think if the performance last week was a benchmark, then I think we played 75 to 80 percent of that tonight.”