An in-depth look at the Philadelphia Union’s 2019 MLS opponents, Part 2

March is right around the corner, you know what that means? It means it’s time for an in-depth look at the Philadelphia Union’s 2019 MLS schedule opponents. Here’s part two of Philly Sports Network seven part series!

April 2019:

In part two of our in-depth look at the Union’s 2019 MLS campaign we take a look at the second month of the season. The Union play four matches in April. Two are home and two are away. April only sees the Union play one eastern conference foe, while the other three are from the west.

Matchday 6:

vs FC Dallas.
Satur
day, April 6th. 7:30 pm.
2018 record: 16 wins 9 losses 9 ties.
2018 Western Conference Standing: 4th.

Philadelphia kick off their second month of play at home against FC Dallas. In 2018 Dallas made the playoffs but were knocked out by Portland in their first playoff match. Dallas’ core players from 2018 will not be back in 2019.

Off-season moves:

PLAYERS IN: PLAYERS OUT:
F – Zdenek Ondrasek (12/18/18 – transfer from Wisla Krakow)

D – Bressan (12/21/18 – transfer from Gremio)

D – John Nelson (1/11/19 – SuperDraft)

M – Edwin Cerrillo (2/14/19 – Homegrown)

M – Abel Aguilar (11/26/18 – option declined)

D – Jordan Cano (11/26/18 – option declined)

D – Maynor Figueroa (11/26/18 – option declined)

M – Roland Lamah (11/26/18 – option declined)

D – Kris Reaves (11/26/18 – option declined)

F – Adonijah Reid (11/26/18 – option declined)

F – Tesho Akindele (12/9/18 – traded to Orlando)

F – Maxi Urruti (12/9/18 – traded to Montreal)

M – Victor Ulloa (12/12/18 – traded to Cincinnati)

D – Chris Richards (1/24/19 – transferred to Bayern Munich)

Dallas will look like a very different team in 2019. They have spent their off-season letting go of their offensive play-makers. Their youth will have the opportunity to shine as has been the case in past seasons, but with out proven goal scorer Maxi Urruti, where will the goals come from?

Dallas did do a good bit of business selling young defender Chris Richards to Bayern Munich, but have done little to fill in their roster. Now with the season one week away, they seem like a team with a lot up in the air. Once the dust settles on the start to the season, we’ll see if this side is formidable or not

The Union take on this unknown quantity a month into the season, will it be a tough match or a match where the Union should take three points at home?

Matchday 7:

@ LA Galaxy.
Satur
day, April 13th. 11:30 pm.
2018 record: 13 wins 12 losses 9 ties.
2018 Western Conference Standing: 7th.

The Union make an early season trip to LA to play the Galaxy in April. LA’s Zlatan experiment in 2018 wasn’t enough to propel them to the playoffs as they missed out by one place. Will they be able to get over the hump in 2019?

Off-season moves:

PLAYERS IN: PLAYERS OUT:
M – Juninho (12/18/18 – free)

GK – Matt Lampson (1/23/19 – Re-Entry Draft)

M – Uriel Antuna (1/29/19 – loan from Manchester City)

D – Diego Polenta (2/7/19 – free)

D – Michael Ciani (11/26/18 – option declined)

GK – Brian Sylvestre (11/26/18 – option declined)

F – Ariel Lassiter (11/26/18 – option declined)

D – Sheanon Williams (11/26/18 – option declined)

D – Ashley Cole (11/26/18 – option declined)

M – Baggio Husidic (11/26/18 – option declined)

M – Emmanuel Boateng (11/26/18 – out of contract)

LA Galaxy fell short in 2018, and many thought a huge rebuild was coming. However that’s not really been the case. LA re-signed Zlatan and have paid down some of their DP’s to fall in line with MLS’ rule. The only players they lost were players either out of contract or those who had their options declined.

On the flip side LA brought in play-making midfielders Juninho and Uriel Antuna to help make thier attack even more promising. While Defense was the main headache for the five time champions, they have done little to make people think that this team wont leak goals in 2019 like they did in 2018.

Philadelphia travels to LA in early spring to take on the Galaxy; they’ll be hoping Los Angeles leaks goals when they come to town.

Matchday 8:

vs Montreal Impact.
Satur
day, April 20th. 1:00 pm.
2018 record: 14 wins 16 losses 4 ties.
2018 Eastern Conference Standing: 7th.

The lone eastern conference opponent the Union play in April is a home match against Montreal impact. Montreal missed out on the last playoff spot in 2018, and their captain Ignacio Piatti has said that 2019 is the last season he’ll be in Montreal. Will the Impact make a playoff push in 2019?

Off-season moves:

PLAYERS IN: PLAYERS OUT:
D – Daniel Kinumbe (11/16/18 – Homegrown)

M/D – Clement Bayiha (11/16/18 – Homegrown)

F – Harry Novillo (12/5/18 – free)

F – Maxi Urruti (12/9/18 – trade from Dallas)

D – Zachary Brault-Guillard (2/5/19 – loan from Lyon)

F – Orji Okwonkwo (2/12/19 – loan from Bologna)

D – Rod Fanni (11/26/18 – option declined)

D – Kyle Fisher (11/26/18 – option declined)

M – Louis Beland-Goyette (11/26/18 – option declined)

M – David Choiniere (11/26/18 – option declined)

F – Michael Salazar (11/26/18 – option declined)

F – Quincy Amarikwa (11/26/18 – out of contract)

F – Matteo Mancosu (11/26/18 – out of contract)

GK – Maxime Crepeau (12/9/18 – traded to Vancouver)

D – Chris Duvall (12/17/18 – traded to Houston)

M/F – Alejandro Silva (1/7/19 – transferred to Olimpia)

D – Michael Petrasso (1/20/19 – mutual contract termination)

GK – James Pantemis (1/20/19 – loaned to Ottawa Fury)

D – Thomas Meilleur-Giguere (1/20/19 – loaned to Ottawa Fury)

M – Jeisson Vargas (2/8/19 – loaned to Universidad Catolica)

Montreal always seem to be a team in the middle of the pack. Their off-season moves may change that ahead of this season. Montreal let go of a lot of players who were out of contract including main striker Matteo Mancosu. Instead of lean heavily on an unproven player to come into MLS, the Impact traded for striker Maxi Urruti.

Maxi Urruti and loanee forward Orji Okwonkwo will head up Montreal’s forward line. They have a proven goal scorer in Urruti, and a player with tremendous upside in Okwonkwo. That coupled with the leader ship of Piatti and Sagna and this team looks primed to make a run in the eastern conference.

The Union play their first match against this reinforced Montreal side at home in a crucial match; Philly will need to take points from this one.

Matchday 9:

@Vancouver Whitecaps FC.
Satur
day, April 27th. 5:00 pm.
2018 record: 13 wins 13 losses 8 ties.
2018 Western Conference Standing: 8th.

Philadelphia take a trip north of the boarder to Vancouver to end April. The Whitecaps have been an interesting team over the past few seasons. They finished eighth in the west in 2018, will they be able to make a turnaround in 2019?

Off-season moves:

PLAYERS IN: PLAYERS OUT:
F – Theo Bair (7/17/18 – Homegrown)

GK – Zac MacMath (12/9/18 – trade from Colorado)

GK – Maxime Crepeau (12/9/18 – trade from Montreal)

D/M – Victor “PC” Giro (12/9/18 – trade from Orlando)

M – Andy Rose (12/10/18 – free)

D – Derek Cornelius (1/18/19 – transfer from Javor Ivanjica)

M – Jon Erice (1/22/19 – transfer from Albacete)

M – Lass Bangoura (1/23/19 – loan from Rayo Vallecano)

M – Lucas Venuto (1/25/19 – transfer from Austria Wien)

D – Scott Sutter (1/30/19 – free)

M – Hwang In-beom (1/30/19 – transfer from Daejon Citizen)

D – Jasser Khmiri (2/1/19 – transfer from Stade Tunisien)

D – Erik Godoy (2/8/19 – loan from CA Colon)

F – Joaquin Ardaiz (2/8/19 – loan from FC Chiasso)

F – Fredy Montero (2/15/19 – free)

M – Alphonso Davies (7/25/18 – transferred to Bayern Munich)

GK – Stefan Marinovic (11/26/18 – option declined)

D – Jose Aja (11/26/18 – option declined)

D – Roberto Dominguez (11/26/18 – option declined)

D – Aaron Maund (11/26/18 – option declined)

M – Marvin Emnes (11/26/18 – option declined)

M – Aly Ghazal (11/26/18 – option declined)

M – Brek Shea (11/26/18 – option declined)

F – Myer Bevan (11/26/18- option declined)

GK – Brian Rowe (11/26/18 – out of contract)

D – Sean Franklin (11/26/18 – out of contract)

M – Cristian Techera (11/26/18 – out of contract)

F – Kei Kamara (11/26/18 – out of contract)

M – Jordon Mutch (11/26/18 – loan expired)

GK – Spencer Richey (12/9/18 – traded to Cincinnati)

M – Nicolas Mezquida (12/9/18 – traded to Colorado)

D – Kendall Waston (12/11/18 – traded to Cincinnati)

F – Erik Hurtado (12/14/18 – traded to Sporting KC)

F – Anthony Blondell (1/28/19 – loaned to Huachipato FC)

M – Efrain Juarez (2/1/19 – mutual contract termination)

D – Marcel de Jong (2/4/19 – mutually agreed to part ways)

Vanocuver are hoping their off-season moves will help them bounce back into playoff contention in the western conference. The selling of Alphonso Davies to Bayern Munich  and cutting players with large contracts puts the Whitecaps in prime position to splash some cash and make this team new.

The additions of striker Freddy Montero as well as six other transfers and loans make this team new, and exciting. Vancouver has broguht in new players to fight for starting spots right away in all positions. Will they be able to steer the ship up the table in 2019?

Philadelphia makes the long trip to Vancouver, as is the case with MLS travel, we’ll see if the Union can compete.

Part Three and four coming later, parts Five, six and seven coming tomorrow; Predictions next week:

Part three and four of An in-depth look at the Philadelphia Union’s 2019 MLS opponents will be released later today. We will also have predictions on how the Union will do in their MLS campaign coming next week leading up to the start of the 2019 MLS season! Stay tuned!

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Peace out Union fans!

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