On Tuesday, May 29, 2012, the Philadelphia Union hosted the Rochester Rhinos for a U.S. Cup tournament game. The Rhinos are part of USL Pro and the Union are part of Major League Soccer. The Rhinos have previously won the U.S. Cup and have had a great season so far in 2012 that featured just one loss. The Union have been struggling so far in the 2012 season. This was sure to be an interesting game and it is likely that many Union fans were nervous that once again the team would let them down. Luckily, the Union showed that the team still has what it takes to win a game and took the victory by a score of 3-0.
The team put on a commanding performance and did not give up big plays as had been the trend in previous games. Within five minutes of the start of the game, Josue Martinez got a goal for the Union. Perhaps the early lead motivated the team to not give up or perhaps the hour long wait, as the game was stopped for the storm, after approximately 20 minutes of play, sparked some life into the team. After approximately 30 minutes of regulation time had passed, Freddy Adu had gotten a second goal for the Union. In the second half, Adu would get one more goal. The defense's role in the game should not be discounted. The Rhinos were a tough opponent and the defense worked hard to kill the major scoring opportunities. Each aspect of the team actually worked together and the team got a good result.
In the next round of the tournament, the team will face the D.C. United. This game may be more tricky than the game against the Rochester Rhinos as the United are another MLS team. The United will be hosting the match on Tuesday, June 5, 2012.
It was nice to see the Union perform well. Unfortunately, this was not a regular season game. Instead, it was against a USL Pro team. I am interested in seeing how the team plays against the Harrisburg City Islanders later in June. The City Islanders won a game against the New England Revolution to advance to the next round of the U.S. Cup tournament. It was strange to see the Union playing so well, especially since the team was without the top scorer. Hopefully, the Union will keep playing like this, but it is doubtful given how the season has been going.
Kristin Watt lives in central Pennsylvania and has no local major league sporting teams in the area .She has chosen to adopt Philadelphia's teams, including the Philadelphia Union, as her own home teams. Philadelphia is close enough to make a daytrip out of a game and still not have to get a hotel room.