Whitecaps Snap Union’s 10 Game Home Win Streak
CHESTER, PA: Just three days after their 4-3 victory to the Chicago Fire, the Union (7-4-5, 26 pts) took to Talen Energy Stadium as they played host to the Vancouver Whitecaps (6-3-7 24 pts) in front of an electric crowd of 17,225.
In the days leading up to last night’s match-up, Union head coach Jim Curtin addressed the media stating, his team needed to do a better job on defense if they wanted to stay in the game against the offensively talented Whitecaps.
He went as far to say that if he had to grade his team’s performance against Chicago, the offense would receive an A, the defense an F. Chicago found the back of the net just 2 minutes into Wednesday night’s match and cut the Union’s 4-1 lead to 4-3 late in the second half.
Fast forward to Friday, The Union would strike first in the 14th minute of play. After firing a shot off the post, Union forward Roland Alberg received a second chance as he placed the juicy rebound past Vancouver goalie, David Ousted.
Alberg now has tallied 5 goals on the season, and has scored in the last three straight games.
The Whitecaps came firing back just six minutes later, as forward Andrew Jacobson headed the team’s corner kick into the back of the net to tie the game at 1.
In the 24th minute the Whitecaps were buzzing around the Union’s zone, after a few passes, Nicolas Mezquida struck a bullet of a shot just above the box, but Union’s goalie Andre Blake made a fantastic save, as he lept up high and parried the ball aside, keeping the match tied. Despite the Union’s defensive effort, the Whitecaps would not take their foot off the gas. Known for his speed, Whitecaps forward Kekuta Manneh flew past Joshua Yaro and the rest of the Union’s defense, slamming home his 5th goal of the season to give the Whitecaps a 2-1 lead.
The Union began to take control of the Whitecaps zone between the 52nd and 54th minutes and despite creating a few quality scoring oppertunites the team failed to find the back of the net. The Whitecaps would invade the Union’s zone yet again in the 83rd minute, as Christian Techera and Erik Hurtado set-up Chrstian Bolanos who snuck a shot past Union defender Keegan Rosenberry that found the back of the net, extending their lead to 3-1.
The officials would add four minutes of extra time in the final minute and the Union attempted to use that to their their advantage. In the 94th and final minute, Sebastian Le Toux struck a beauty of a corner right in the wheel-house of Leo Fernandes, who headed the shot around the goal mouth, luckily Chris Pontinus was in close proximity and struck home the rebound, cutting the Whitecaps lead in half, however it was a bit too late and the Union would fall short to the Whitecaps by a final of 3-2.
FINAL MATCH STATS
Shots: 21-10 Union
Shots on Target: 6-4 Vancouver
Possession: 53.4 – 46.6 Vancouver
Passing Accuracy: 84-79
Fouls: 14-7 Vancouver
Corners: 6-5 Union
Duels won: 55-48 Union
Tackles won: 19-16 Vancouver
PHI: Roland Alberg, assisted by Sebastien Le Toux, 14’
PHI: Chris Pontius 90+4’
VAN: Andrew Jacobson 19’
VAN: Kekuta Manneh 41’
VAN: Christian Bolanos, assisted by Erik Hurtado, 84’
PHI: Tranquillo Barnetta (Yellow, Unsporting Behaivor) 36’
VAN: Kekuta Manneh (Yellow, Unsporting Behaivor) 51’
POST GAME INTERVIEWS
Whitecaps Head Coach Carl Robinson:
Union Head Coach Jim Curtin:
Union Goalkeeper Andre Blake:
The Union resume Open Cup play when they return to the Talen Energy Stadium on Wednesday, June 25th, as they play host to the New York Red Bulls in the round of 16.
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