Philadelphia Union preseason recap: The games, the signings and more

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The Union had a busy week of preseason this week! A player singing, a concerning injury have been the highlights and two games were the highlights of this weeks action. Take a look back with this weeks Union preseason recap!

The week started off with a scrimmage against the US U-17 team. With no live stream available, and not many updates it was hard to cover the game during. Afterwards, the Union’s twitter account put out a list of the goal scorers.

Philly found goals from first team players, new comers and a Bethlehem Steel player. Not much was said about how they set up tier scoring plays, but Warren Creavalle, Fafa Picault and Jim Curtin gave some insight to the team’s performance.

Their 5-3 win gave them some momentum moving toward an heir game against Chicago Thursday. However, before Thursday the Union signed another player.

the Union signed Red Bulls homegrown product Adam Najem. Najem is an attacking midfielder who can play either the eight or the 10. The Union sign the youngster, who played in college at Akron, by giving the Res Bulls their second round pick of the 2018 draft.

Be on the look out for the full story on Najem later this week from Philly Sports Network. Now on to some more pressing matters.

defender Josh Yaro will be out 3-4 moths after having shoulder surgery yesterday.

Apparently, the young defender injured himself in a training session. This news is grave for the Union, as he was a player who was pushing to become a starter. His injury should likely give veteran Oguchi Onyewu the starting role, with Ken Tribbett as the backup. Yaro will be out until May/June. Let’s hope the Union’s defense can hold it down while he recovers. This news was put out about 30 minutes before the preseason game against Chicago.

The Union’s match against Chicago was the first live-streamed game of the preseason. The starting lineup. Was very similar to a standard Union lineup.

Chicago countered with a strong looking lineup of their own.

The first half was a back and forth affair, with both sides trying to incorporate the long ball on a windy day. The Union had some decent chances including a nice sequence where all four attacking players played fast, one touch soccer. Herbers was a hair offside, so the chance was rendered useless anyways. The Union’s defense was solid with Fabi, Marquez, Onyewu, and Rosenberry; Creavalle and Bedoya were good together as well in the middle of the field. Up top, Jay Simpson was a handful, his quick movements caught many Chicago Fire players out. Towards the end of the first half, the Union dominated possession, but didn’t  find the back of the net. The second half started with a few substitutes.

Philly found it more difficult when these guys came in. The defense especially was weaker. In the 57th minute the fire put a dangerous cross into the box. Poor defending led to a header put on goal, McCarthy had to scramble to make the save. His deflection of the attempt, went right back out to Chicago striker De Leeuw who headed home the second chance. Philadelphia was down, but not out.

The Union subbed out the majority of the team, and found a lot of attacking success. Chicago sat deeper after their goal, which allowed Epps, Pontius, Najem and Fafa oppertunities. Unfortunately, none of the chances resulted in goals. The game ended a 1-0 loss for the Union, but it was a good exercise against a strong eastern conference opponent.

This week was another full one for the Union; adding another player, losing a key defender and two preseason scrimmages. Next week won’t be as busy, but the revamping for the 2017 season continues on. There are only 24 days until the first regular season Union game of the year!

Make sure to come back to Philly Sports Network for more updates on Adam Najem, and more preseason news. Until then, peace out Union fans.

 

Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

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