Friday, April 13, 2012

Philadelphia Union vs Columbus Crew Preview

  It's that time again. Time for another match preview. The Union are set to host the Columbus Crew. Everybody knows the story for the Union so far. Turmoil. in the lineup, on the field, in the media, turmoil everywhere. Is Nowak's system working? Is Danny Califf injured? Can Zack MacMath handle his role? Can the Union score? Who knows, no, yes, and God I hope so. But the Columbus Crew are a different story. They are .500. They play solid defense, and they don't score much. But their last game holds a key for the Union.

 The New York Red Bulls showed the way to beat the Crew. Attack. Early and Often. If we can get behind the defense, we can score. I realize that this seems pretty basic. But the Crew broke down after New York scored their opening goal. And New York could pile on the pressure and score the goals. And the Union need to exploit this. We need to strike quick, and then let the Crew take chances. Once they are taking chances, we can set up attacking runs to cut through their midfield and defense, since they will have to push to keep up. Despite their record, the Crew are not an offensive juggernaut. Nor have they beaten quality opponent,s with victories over cellar dwelling Toronto F.C. and the Montreal Impact.

Now I realize this is bold statement, since the Union currently reside in the cellar as well. But I've seen good things from the Union in the past 2 matches. They've had good  chances, and good offensive possession. All they need is for a couple of breaks to go their way. And to me, the stars are aligning this weekend. Think about. A home match after a week off. Olympic qualifying players are back. And a lot of time to work on offense. If the Union don't come out firing tomorrow, I'll be sorely disappointed. And I realize I have been down on the Union in my predictions the last couple of matches. But this week feels different. This week has potential I haven't seen in the last few matches.

In front of a raucous crowd, and a pumped up Sons of Ben, I think the Union will roll. 3-1 Union, with goals by Pajoy and Mwanga. And MacMath will have a solid game in net, only allowing 1 goal in. The Union will never fall behind, and will press their chances, and have a couple close balls. This game could easily end 5-1 if everything goes the Union's way.

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