CHESTER, Pa. – Some athletes love going up against their former teams because it gives them extra drive to play a better game. Others, though, tend to get caught up in the emotion of playing against their ex-teammates.
Philadelphia Union midfielder Fred does not fall into either category as his current team prepares to head to RFK Stadium on Sunday to face his former side, D.C. United. It will be all business for the Brazilian.
“It’ll be good to play my old team,” said the Union No. 7 very matter-of-factly after training on Wednesday. "But the main goal is to go there and get the three points.”
[inline_node:286709]Fred will be returning to the nation’s capital for the first time since he was traded to the Union along with allocation money and DC’s first-round pick (seventh overall) in the 2010 SuperDraft this past January.
That trade has helped the expansion Union surpass United, who sit five points below Philadelphia at the bottom of the Eastern Conference table.
“It’s important to win against not just the teams that are below us in the table, but also having the opportunity to win against teams that are above us,” said Fred of his team’s philosophy. “For us, that’s the most important thing, competing against the teams that are above us.”
Getting a result at RFK will be huge for the Union’s hopes of making a late playoff push. Philadelphia are coming off two consecutive 1-1 draws against Real Salt Lake and the Colorado Rapids, games in which the Union dominated large stretches of these matches but could not convert on their opportunities.
“We played well," Fred said. "We created a lot of scoring chances. We need to continue to push forward and need to continue shooting the ball and shooting on goal and, most importantly, getting goals.”
Even if it means scoring against the team for which he made 72 appearances prior to joining the Union. Fred will be ready to break some D.C. hearts if need be.