- The River End
- ⚽️ Weather, Injuries Dampen LAFC Rematch
⚽️ Weather, Injuries Dampen LAFC Rematch
+ Union shift focus to playoff position
Photo by Jack Verdeur
LAST MATCH: Union 0 - LAFC 0
NEXT MATCH: vs. FC Dallas, Wednesday, Sept. 27 | Apple TV - Free
Good morning. The soggy weekend is over and a forgettable scoreless draw with LAFC is behind us. Union II are in the playoffs and the first team still has a legitimate claim to second place with five games left.
In the email today:
1) 🌧️ Weather, Injuries Dampened MLS Cup Rematch
The rematch of the 2022 MLS Cup final deserved better. But what it got was a rotation/injury depleted soggy scoreless draw.
Injuries to Jose Martinez and Jakob Glesnes (ending his 101-game MLS streak of starts), and LAFC resting players for the Campeones Cup took something away from the start. Julian Carranza’s concussion only added to the misery.
All those extra games from CCL (worth it) and Leagues Cup (not worth it?) are catching up to the Union and their opponents.
After four-straight thrilling draws (counting MLS Cup) where they scored a total of 18 goals, the Union and LAFC could only muster a combined 0.35 xG. That’s the lowest of any game this season.
Our take: The Union had a chance to get some revenge on a team that has become their nemesis, but that game just wasn’t it.
2) 🔭 Second Place Within Reach with 5 Games Left
FC Cincinnati’s 3-0 win on Saturday more or less wrapped up the Eastern Conference trophy (+11) and Supporters’ Shield (+9) in one fell swoop. Second place is still very much in play, however.
The Union are two back of second place Orlando City with a game in hand.
Three other teams are now even on 49 points with the Union. The Union play all three teams still.
Three of the five games will be at Subaru Park.
Our take: The final stretch of the season has the potential to feel like a mini playoff of its own with the way the schedule shakes out. All five opponents are in the playoff picture.
3) 🦩Tweet of the Day: Orlando City Trolls Inter Miami Fans
I love this!!!
— 🇲🇽🇲🇽🇲🇽 Adrian 🇸🇻🇸🇻🇸🇻 (@adrian_viveros)
Sep 24, 2023
4) 💧 Water Cooler: How Many Points?
How many points do you see the Union getting in their last five games?
Have additional thoughts? Reply directly to this email to comment, and see if we include your response tomorrow.
Results from our last poll: How Big of a Rival is LAFC?
5) 🔗 Link Roundup:
3️⃣ Does three at the back solve the Union’s midfield problems? Head coach Jim Curtin has relied on the three-back set to navigate an unprecedented schedule this season. The results have been mixed.
🐍 Union II are playoff bound for the second straight year after an MLS Next Pro Decision Day win in New Jersey on Sunday.
📺 Union skipper Alejandro Bedoya was the special guest on the PHLY Union podcast on Friday.
🌧️ Recap of Saturday night’s scoreless draw with LAFC.
The newsletter today was written by: Matt Ralph @MattRalph_
Thanks for reading!