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2017 MLS Season: First Away and Home Matches
- Updated: March 17, 2017
Two games into the new 2017 MLS season and the Union still haven’t lost. The Union played their first match of the new season in Vancouver against the Whitecaps and returned home with one point then played at home for the first time this season against the Eastern Conference champs, Toronto FC, in which they tied too.
The Union went to Canada to play against the Vancouver’s Whitecaps on March 5th and came back to the U.S not losing. At the 24’ midfielder, Alphonso Davies was able to come inside and pass the ball swiftly to Cristian Techera, who luckily for the Union, kicked the ball far right instead of back into the net, while slipping a pass between both Fabinho and Richie Marquez. During a corner kick for the Whitecaps at the 66’, there were 3 shots made and luckily none went in thanks to Andre Black and, new signing, Oguchi Onyewu. From the corner kick, the ball was passed to Jordan Harvey who kicked the ball and it deflected from Blake’s save but then came back to Harvey again and his second kick was saved by the amazing defending skills of the veteran Onyewu, who then saved the ball again from the Whitecaps after the ball again deflected off his first save.
There were some moments where the Union shined, like when Alejandro Bedoya tried to score a cheeky goal with the back of his heel at the 50’ or when Chris Pontius has a great run in the 69’ from midfield but didn’t have much power in his kick for it to be put into the back of the net and was easily saved by the keeper.
The first match of the season played at home in Chester, PA was against the team that knocked them out in the playoffs last season: Toronto FC. Over the Summer, the Union bought English forward, Jay Simpsons and his role were to be starting striker which would downgrade Union’s star striker, C.J Sapong.
“It might be hard for people off the field to see the bond we have as a team but every forward on the team is cheering for each other,” Sapong said. “We’re able to push ourselves and maximize our own limits just by competing for a spot. We all definitely want to be on the field, but at the same time, we want to see the other succeed.”
On march 11th, the home opening match showcased that both strikers are capable of scoring goals. Simpsons scored his first goal for the Union within 10 mins of the match, 19 minutes later he was subbed off for Sapong due to an injury. Sapong then scored the tie-breaking goal at the 73’.
Head coach Jim Curtin was happy to see that both strikers got a goal and so were the fans.
Hopefully, this is the start of a non-losing streaking for the Union!