FC Dallas vs. Philadelphia Union
What: Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup semifinal match
When: Tuesday, 9 p.m.; Where: Frisco, Texas
Social: Follow the action via Twitter: @TheUMatchday
It’s a quick turnaround and a difficult opponent.
Fresh off their 2-1 victory over the Montreal Impact last Saturday night, the Philadelphia Union were preparing to travel to Frisco, Tex., for a U.S. Open Cup semifinal matchup Tuesday against FC Dallas.
If the Union are victorious, they will host the championship game on Sept. 16 at PPL Park.
“It’s not easy but it’s the same thing for Dallas they played (Saturday) so it’s a quick turnaround for them, too,” Union interim manager Jim Curtin said. “They played at home (Saturday) and on Tuesday so we have the travel element, which is difficult. The crazier thing is that we have to turn around and play again on Friday in Houston, which is tough. We’re not going to make excuses. We have a deep squad now if you look the bench we have hundreds and hundreds of games of experience, so that’s a positive to come in and close out games.
“There’s competition in training like you wouldn’t believe for spots right now. We have a crowded group and people forget about Cristian Maidana so again he’s coming back and he will be close for Tuesday.”
Could there be changes to the lineup?
“Like I said, we have three games now in a very short time period and we have guys on the bench that can play and would be starters for a lot of other teams in this league,” Curtin said. “A guy like Fabinho who is kind of the odd man out and he’s been a pro about it, he can come in and play and he will play a role going forward whether it’s Tuesday or Friday he will play role down the road. Having a deep squad is a going thing right now.”
Sebastien Le Toux scored both goals in the win against the Impact, pushing his total to a team-high 10.
The Frenchman has also tallied three goals in U.S. Open Cup competition this season.
Le Toux was injured in stoppage time after being kicked in the left ankle by Krzysztof Krol.
Following the Montreal match, Le Toux had his ankle taped with ice. His status for the U.S. Open Cup is unclear.
“I was very angry with the fact that the time went a little longer and that’s when he gets kicked,” Curtin said. “I’m not in any way saying that the referees had anything to do with him getting an injury but it was right in that gray area because Zac (MacMath) got hurt in injury time, and they weren’t sure how much time to add. Again, it’s a gray area in soccer where it goes a little longer then you would have liked and that’s when Sebastien gets kicked. Unfortunately, we won’t speculate but it’s not great.”
If Le Toux can play, it will be a major boost for the Union.
“When Jim took over, he really told me what he wanted me to do on this team and my position and as a player in this group,” Le Toux said. “I feel good and I know exactly what he wants me to do. I’m not in no-mans-land, I know exactly what position he wants me to play.”
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