The Audi 2021 MLS Cup Playoffs kick off on Saturday, November 20, with the Philadelphia Union against New York Red Bulls presented by Independence Blue Cross. Kick off from Subaru Park is set for 2:30 p.m. ET with the match available locally on PHL17 as well as on Univision, TUDN and MLSSoccer.com.
Saturday afternoon's contest will be the second chapter to place in the postseason with the Union grabbing a remarkable 4-3 win in extra time against the Red Bulls in 2019. The match saw the visitors jump out to a two-goal lead in the first half before captain Alejandro Bedoya notched a goal in the 30th minute. Just before the halftime whistle, Red Bull answered back with a goal to again grab a two-goal lead. Like the City of Brotherly Love, the Union didn't give up and sent the match to extra time with goals from Jack Elliott in the 52' and Fafa Picault in the 78'. Playing in cold and pouring rain, the Union had the final laugh with a goal from Marco Fabian in the 105th minute that is etched in Union history.
The Union look to make more history against the Red Bulls after finishing the regular season as the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference after reeling off results in 10 of their last 11. The 2021 Philadelphia Union follow that defense first mentality embodied by Jim Curtin and racked up 12 shutouts this season. Led by reigning MLS Goalkeeper of the Year Andre Blake, the Union allowed the third-fewest amount of open-play expected goals across the league. The Union defense has been even more stingy at Subaru Park with opposing offenses held without a goal for the last 393 minutes.
Philadelphia Union and New York Red Bulls squared off three times in the regular season with the Union taking the series via a 1-0-2 margin. While the two sides fought to a pair of draws in New Jersey, the Union grabbed the lone win of the series in front of the Union faithful back in May. Jamiro Monteiro slotted a pass to Cory Burke streaking down the left side of the penalty box. At full sprint, the Jamaican entered a hard slide and used his momentum to lift the ball past former Union goalkeeper Carlos Coronel and into the net.
On Sale Now - 2021 Playoff Tickets!
Subaru Park is going to host an epic chapter in the Philadelphia Union vs New York Red Bulls rivalry in the 2021 Audi MLS Cup Playoffs on Saturday, November 20th at 2:30 pm ET. You do not want to miss this one, so get your tickets now!
Overall the Union have owned the matchup against the Red Bulls since 2019, with the Boys in Blue taking results in seven of the last eight contests which includes that memorable MLS Cup Playoffs win.
The Red Bulls were seemingly left for dead in early September with just four wins in their first 20 matches. Things clicked into gear for Gerhard Struber's squad with the club going 7-4-1 down the stretch to secure their 12th consecutive postseason berth. Much like Philly, Red Bulls' philosophy is defense first with the club allowing just 33 goals to lead the league in the category along with 13 shutouts from former Union keeper Carlos Coronel. With such a focus on defense, the Jersey side has had issues with getting goals with 24 of their matches resulting in just a single goal or fewer. Fábio was the hero last time out for the squad with a goal at Nashville SC just 38 seconds into the match for his seventh of the season while Patryk Klimala led the offense with eight goals and seven assists.