Marco Fabián knows it's still early days for him with Philadelphia Union. The Mexican playmaker took seven shots and scored one goal in his first Major League Soccer match, though he spent much of his time escaping from Michael Bradley's endless... pressure?
The overall goal for Fabián, of course, is not to win a single match or score some arbitrary number of goals. He has arrived in Philadelphia on a mission to take the Union back to the postseason for a second straight season, and to do that he knows he needs more reps with the players around him.
"It's timing. When I move I create space; that's my job is find space and then move," the 29-year old said this week. "I can talk to my teammates and we will know when someone is following me to play the ball to the space."
On Saturday, Fabián often had to drop in front of Toronto's midfield to become involved. He completed 14 of his 19 final third passes, but none of the four played within or into the Toronto box. Additionally, TFC often made him pass horizontally rather than through their lines.
"I could see early with Toronto's tactics that Bradley would be following me, and sometimes when that happens I have to find different spaces and move outside to find spaces," Fabián explained. "And also I can talk with the defenders and say when I'm here in the space; play the ball now, and maybe two defenders follow me and now there is space for someone else."
But the club's creative hub emphasized that he is not frustrated with anyone around him, he simply believes that training and experience will lead to easier and faster link ups between himself and his teammates. "It felt good playing with my teammates," he smiled. "We want to win every game. We can see Kansas City is a strong opponent, but we will be ready."
Fabián and the Union face Sporting KC on Sunday, March 10 at 3 p.m. ET on PHL17.