Seattle occupies a few spots in the Philadelphia history books, despite matching up against the Union just five times since 2010.
The Sounders were the Union’s first ever opponent.
They were also the first team to visit PPL Park.
Saturday’s game will be the only time these two clubs meet in 2013. It was the same situation in 2012, when Philadelphia traveled to Seattle for the season’s lone matchup.
This year, it’s Seattle’s turn to do the traveling.
1. March 25, 2010 – Seattle 2, Philadelphia 0 (Qwest Field)
Goals: Evans 12’, Montero 43’
Philadelphia’s first game in franchise history proved to be both memorable and forgettable at the same time.
First-ever Union starting XI: Seitz (GK), Harvey, Califf, Stahl, Myrie, Jacobson, Orozco, Mwanga, Torres, Le Toux, Moreno
Seattle was all over Philadelphia in the opening half, scoring through Brad Evans just 12 minutes into the game.
Toni Stahl earned his place in the Union archives with a franchise-first red card (inside the first half), and Freddy Montero doubled the lead just three minutes after the sending off.
Down a man and playing on the road, Philadelphia lost the franchise debut, 2-0.
2. June 27, 2010 – Philadelphia 3, Seattle 1 (PPL Park)
Goals: Noonan 44’, Le Toux 54’ (PK), Fred 79’, Mwanga 84’
It was a much better result this time around, as Philadelphia celebrated the opening of PPL Park along the banks of the Delaware River.
Seattle’s Pat Noonan earned the distinction of scoring first at the brand-new stadium, but the Union would not lose the debut game inside their new building.
Sebastien Le Toux became the first Union player to score at PPL Park when he converted a penalty kick in the 54th minute. Fred found the game-winner on the 79th and Danny Mwanga added an insurance goal five minutes later.
It was Philadelphia’s third win of 2010 – a welcome return home after playing eight of the first 10 games on the road.
3. April 16, 2011 – Philadelphia 1, Seattle 1 (PPL Park)
Goals: Ruiz 32’, Fernandez 90+’
We have to give kudos to the fans who cheered on the team in the miserable wet weather.
Even though the Flyers and Sixers were both playing at the same time, and the conditions were hardly meant for a soccer game, several thousand fans came out to watch this matchup.
The highlight was Carlos Ruiz’s first half free kick, which took a deflection and beat Kasey Keller at the far post to put the Union up 1-0.
The lowlight was Seattle’s stoppage-time equalizer, converted by Alvaro Fernandez after the Union failed to clear the box on a corner kick.
4. October 8, 2011 – Philadelphia 2, Seattle 0 (CenturyLink Field)
Goals: Adu 60’, Carroll 70’
It must be noted that Seattle were without three of their best attacking players: Mauro Rosales, Alvaro Fernandez, and Freddy Montero.
Still – it was a critical result.
This win nearly solidified Philadelphia’s playoff position and set the team up to clinch a postseason berth at home the following week.
The win also gave the 2011 Supporter’s Shield to Los Angeles, knocking Seattle out of contention for the best regular season record. This was the final season of MLS’ “balanced schedule” where each team played every other team twice.
5. May 5, 2012 – Seattle 1, Philadelphia 0 (CenturyLink Field)
Goals: Rosales 63’
Philadelphia had a couple of important clearances in the first 10 minutes to keep Seattle off the board.
There was controversy in the 28th minute, when Andy Rose was not shown a card after bringing down Freddy Adu from behind. It was a rash tackle, and it should have been Rose’s second yellow of the game. Seattle dodged a bullet and did not go down to 10 men.
Philadelphia’s offense struggled throughout, and Rosales’ 63rd minute goal was good enough to be the game-winner.
Contact Union writer Kevin Kinkead at firstname.lastname@example.org