One match won’t define a season.
That was the message Sebastien Le Toux tried to convey following a disappointing 3-1 loss to Sporting Kansas City last Saturday at PPL Park.
Le Toux scored the Philadelphia Union’s lone goal, but the result ultimately went to the defending Eastern Conference champions.
Yes, it was a difficult loss to open the 2013 season. But it’s only the beginning. And the club can turn things around quickly.
“We are all disappointed in the result because we worked very hard in preseason for this match,” said Le Toux, who scored the 26th career goal in a Union uniform. “We felt like we were ready. I could have had one or two more and I am upset about that. Give credit in the end to Kansas City because they took control. We had chances to go up by more.
“I think it’s important to learn from this but also to wipe it away and get ready for Colorado. If we go on the road and get the three points, it will wipe away a lot of the disappointment here.”
When Le Toux’s name was called over the public address system, the crowd of more than 18,000 roared its appreciation. When Le Toux scored, the fans erupted again.
Even when the match ended in disappointment, Le Toux stayed around to sign autographs and mingle with the fans he missed dearly while in Vancouver and New York.
“It was great and fantastic and I kind of never left here,” Le Toux said. “My spirit was kind of always here and people like me a lot here and I like them just as much. Having my name said for the starting 11, it was a great reception and I could not ask for a better one. I am very thankful to them and I am just very happy to be back.
“I have said this a lot since coming back, but it’s true. There’s nothing better than playing in front of these passionate fans. They support us and we will do our very best to continue to play at the highest level possible for them.”
After scoring 25 goals in two seasons with the Union, Le Toux managed just five last season – four with Vancouver and one with New York.
Being back to his natural forward spot should increase that total this season.
“It wasn’t like I lost confidence because I didn’t,” Le Toux said. “I feel like I’m at my best up top at forward. I feel like we have great chemistry here and this season should be great. I’m confident in my ability to score a lot of goals. All I want to do is win. If I score and we don’t win, then it’s not good. I want us to win, earn points and keep getting better. But playing up top is what I like best and it’s where I’m most comfortable. I know it’s going to be a great situation.”
Philadelphia’s situation can improve mightily with a victory Saturday at Colorado.
“We have to forget about the loss to Sporting and push ahead,” Le Toux said. “I know myself and all these guys in here will come back strong and ready to play. We want to wipe away the bad taste and turn it around Saturday.”
Contact Union writer Andy Jasner at firstname.lastname@example.org