Chester, PA (Sports Network) - A pair of heated interconference rivals face
off on Saturday as the Philadelphia Union welcome FC Dallas to PPL Park.
Philadelphia has been in a rich vein of form as of late and is currently
riding a four-match home winning streak across all competitions.
Last time out, Philadelphia put together its most complete performance of the
season in a convincing 3-0 victory over the New York Red Bulls to move up to
second place in the Eastern Conference on 25 points.
The Union had the better of the play all afternoon against a depleted New York
team which was missing defender Jamison Olave and midfielders Juninho and Tim
Philadelphia struck first seven minutes in as Sheanon Williams served a
beautiful ball into the box where Conor Casey was there to head it past Luis
Philadelphia then caught a good break when New York's Lloyd Sam was sent off
for a rash two-footed challenge on Danny Cruz in the 28th minute.
Casey collected his second goal of the day after he cleaned up a rebound from
a shot by Keon Daniel in the 62nd minute, and the Union capped off an
excellent performance two minutes from time as Sebastien Le Toux sent one into
the box for a wide-open Antoine Hoppenot to fire home.
Sunday's win marked the second consecutive match that leading goal scorer Jack
McInerney failed to find the back of the net. Casey and Le Toux will have to
pick up the scoring slack in the coming weeks while McInerney is away with the
U.S. national team for the CONCACAF Gold Cup.
"As a forward obviously you want to score and the most important thing is to
put the work in," Casey said. "Jack has put the work in all year and it's good
for the other guys like me to come in and take the load off of him."
FC Dallas, meanwhile, is coming off a 2-2 draw at home to Sporting Kansas City
last Saturday and a 3-2 loss to Portland on Wednesday in the quarterfinals of
the U.S. Open Cup.
FCD was sluggish for 88 minutes of Saturday's draw before two quick goals from
Ramon Nunez and Walker Zimmerman salvaged a point and extended the club's
home unbeaten streak to 13 consecutive matches.
"I kept looking up above the stadium, where there was a full moon and
sometimes full moons are bad karma or bad luck or whatever it may be," said
FCD head coach Schellas Hyndman. "Even though we were up a man, I didn't know
if we were going to find a goal."
In five all-time meetings between the clubs, FC Dallas has yet to lose,
holding a 2-0-3 mark. In last season's only meeting, a seventh minute goal
from Blas Perez was canceled out by a 56th-minute Gabriel Gomez tally as the
match ended in a 1-1 stalemate.
The Sports Network