Philadelphia Union Gain Momentum for Playoffs in Exciting Win at PPL Park

Philadelphia Union

photo via Philadelphia Union’s Twitter

In an exciting inter-conference match PPL Park which saw Rais M’Bohli make his MLS debut, the Philadelphia Union came out in dominating fashion to go home with the three points they desperately needed to keep them in the hunt for a playoff spot in the extremely tight Eastern Conference.  The San Jose Earthquakes have dealt with injuries from Steven Lenhart to Yannick Djalo and now Matias Perez Garcia, and came out extremely depleted and unorganized in the first half.  That helped the Union to get on the scoresheet early with offensive strikes coming from Andrew Wenger in the 10th minute and Sebastien LeToux in the 14th minute.

Then after halftime, goals from Sam Cronin and Chris Wondolowski brought the visiting Earthquakes back level before Sheanon Williams took his shot to pull the Union back ahead.  Finally, Andrew Wenger scored his second of the game on a breakaway to bring the Union to a 4-2 final score line.  Though the Earthquakes have been depleted due to injuries lately, their homegrown star Tommy Thompson remained remarkably poised and did not seem to be stressed trying to fit into Head Coach Mark Watson‘s lineup for the second straight game.  Earthquakes fans have to wonder if he will be the team’s next star, even though they just signed Perez Garcia as the third Designated Player in club history.

With the Earthquakes winless in their last four matches, their postseason hopes are rapidly disappearing, while the Union have kept themselves in the thick of the Eastern Conference postseason race with two games against Toronto FC coming up next on September 3rd and 6th.  These next few games are going to be pivotal “six-point” swing games with significant playoff implications and they need these points to catch up to some of the other teams who have been on a roll lately.

Hopefully this newfound offense with LeToux and Wenger leading the way, can keep scoring goals and netting assists as the Union attempt to make up ground under Interim Head Coach Jim Curtin.  Union fans will be watching very closely as the remainder of the season plays out to see if they will make the playoffs and be a force or if the new offensive drive is too little too late.

Jasmine Stefanik is a writer for Stoppage Time Soccer. Follow her on Twitter @TrueUnionFan1and like her page on Facebook.

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