Philadelphia Union are back in action for some Monday Night Futbol as they travel north for yet another match against the New England Revolution at 7:30 PM on PHL17 and PhiladelphiaUnion.com. The unusual Monday night scheduling came after a conflict at Gillette Stadium caused this matchup to be pushed a day.
After a somewhat disappointing draw against D.C. United, the Union know they are postseason bound officially having clinched a spot in the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs for the third straight year. The draw came after D.C. United took a 2-1 lead following a controversial penalty kick that caused Ale Bedoya to pickup another yellow card putting him out on the sitting him out the next game. Mark McKenzie scorched a rocket from outside the box into the back of the net to even the score at two in the 87’. His first professional career goal was also the MLS Goal of the Week. Heading into Monday’s match, Philly will be without two key pieces of their usual Starting XI with Jose Martinez in quarantine since returning from international duty and the aforementioned Bedoya.
Although Head Coach Jim Curtin is confident the coaching staff has found a successful way to shift, he admits it will be a tough job especially on the turf at Gillette Stadium. “It doesn’t matter what personal is out there, we tend to look the same almost every match”. Curtin will also have the long awaited return of Cory Burke in his back pocket as he will finally be available.
This will be the third time Philly has met the Revs in the regular season thus far and fourth time overall in 2020 (adding in the elimination match in Orlando) and there is still one more meeting between these clubs on the schedule. Coach Curtin admits that the frequent meetings between the clubs have allowed them to become familiar with each other. “Every game has been very tight, highly contested, and very competitive. They were all one-play games…not a lot of chances for either team… it’s going to come down to who executes in the penalty box.” The Revs have encountered multiple injuries this season, but have continued to bounce back and hold their own. Similar to the Union they don’t concede many goals, so expect an aggressive defensive battle on Monday night.
Players to Watch
Brenden Aaronson: Brenden made it very clear in his press conference on Friday that he wants to win a trophy in Philadelphia before he leaves to join FC Red Bull Salzburg in January 2021.
Bunbury carries his team on the field with both his veteran leadership and his team-high six goals.