Seattle Sounders FC at Philadelphia Union: Match Night Commentary

SEA_Primary_COL UNI_Primary_COL

By AVI CREDITOR

Major League Soccer's ninth soccer-specific stadium opens its gates along the Delaware River, as the Philadelphia Union take to the PPL Park pitch in Chester, Pa., for the first time.

The Seattle Sounders and the Union will play in the stadium's opening match (5 p.m., ESPN2/ESPN Deportes) in a rematch of the season's opening night. The Sounders took that game, 2-0, on March 26, as the Union went a man down in the 40th minute and couldn't recover.

The Union will look for the same adrenaline rush that propelled them to a winner in their initial home opener, when they defeated D.C. United, 3-2, at Lincoln Financial Field on April 10 behind a Sebastien Le Toux hat trick.

I'll be providing live commentary from a sold-out PPL Park, so please feel free to follow along and share your thoughts and opinions in the comments section below. Enjoy the match (commentary after the jump).

—————-

POSTGAME – Union players and fans still celebrating the victory together in the Sons of Ben end of the stadium, something they hope they'll be doing frequently for quite some time.

That's all for me from Chester. Thanks for following along, and keep on coming back to SBI for more World Cup and MLS coverage. Good night everybody!

—————-

POSTGAME – Seattle took the first-half lead through Pat Noonan, but credit the Union for coming out with a solid second-half mentality and finding three goals to put this one away.

Chris Seitz stepped up by stuffing Noonan's PK attempt, and the offense took it from there.

—————-

90th Minute – There's the final whistle! Philadelphia rewards its fans with a wonderful performance. Union 3, Sounders 1. A magical night at PPL Park is in the books.

—————-

90th Minute – Man of the match for me is Sebastien Le Toux. Sorry, Seattle. His work rate was impressive, and he was involved in all three Philadelphia goals.

—————-

90th Minute – Three more minutes to go.

—————-

89th Minute – Credit the Union's back line. They've been saddled, rightfully so, with the reputation of being mistake-prone, but tonight that unit has done a solid job.

—————-

87th Minute – Mwanga exits for Nick Zimmerman. Nice night for Mwanga, who showed some promise in the attacking third and was rewarded with the late sitter.

—————-

86th Minute – For the Sounders, they're approaching back-to-back losses to D.C. United and the Union. Blaise N'Kufo can't get to the United States soon enough.

—————-

85th Minute – Moreno slipped Le Toux down the right, and he found Mwanga in the center of the box. Keller came up with a great point-blank save, but he yielded a rebound and Mwanga tapped it in for his fourth goal of the season. Three second-half goals for the Union.

—————-

84th MinuteGOAL UNION!!! DANNY MWANGA WITH THE DAGGER! 3-1!

—————-

82nd Minute – Amobi Okugo comes on for Fred, who gets a nice hand for scoring what could be the first game-winner in PPL Park history.

18,755 paid attendance tonight. The first of many sell out crowds along the Delaware River.

—————-

80th Minute – GREAT goalkeeping from Seitz! Jaqua was sprung free on the right side of the box, and Seitz came way out to make an aggressive, but smart play on the ball.

Roger Levesque is on for Pat Noonan.

—————-

79th Minute – Le Toux's cross went untouched toward the far post, and Fred was wide open and tucked home his chance. Awful defending by the Sounders. Three defenders could've gotten to that cross, and nobody was marking Fred. Philly has a deserved lead, though. It's been the better side tonight.

—————-

79th MinuteGOAL UNION!!! FRED PUTS PHILLY AHEAD 2-1!!

—————-

78th Minute – SAVE KELLER! He manages to get one hand on a goal-bound Arrieta header!! WOW what a save. He's still got it.

—————-

77th Minute – Salinas with more impressive individual work to take the ball down the right and win another corner. Great night attacking-wise for Salinas.

—————-

75th Minute – Jordan Harvey comes up with a well-timed challenge to stop a Ljungberg run down the right. Big moment for the Union. They don't want Ljungberg unchecked in the open field.

—————-

74th Minute – The Sons of Ben are mimicking the noise of the vuvuzela. That's awful/impressive.

—————-

72nd Minute – Nate Jaqua replaces Zakuani to make his season debut.

—————-

72nd Minute – SAVE KELLER AGAIN! Moreno blasts from distance, and Keller parries it over the bar. Union applying more pressure.

—————-

71st Minute – SAVE KELLER! Nobody closes down on Fred, and his blast from 20 yards is saved out for a corner by a diving Keller.

—————-

70th Minute – Le Toux's corner goes through everybody and Seattle takes over. Will either team find a winner?

—————-

68th Minute – Missed opportunity for Seattle as Ianni had a free header after a Ljungberg free kick, but he wasn't close to the target.

—————-

66th Minute – Promising build-up for the Union results in more possession inside the Seattle box, but credit the Sounders' defenders for getting in the path and not letting anything get on frame.

Rookie Mike Seamon is on for Vagenas for Seattle.

—————-

63rd Minute – Andrew Jacobson comes on for Roger Torres. Not the best night for the young winger, but he's one of the league's budding stars.

—————-

62nd Minute – Ljungberg's free kick toward the far post is headed out for a corner.

—————-

61st Minute – Moreno ALMOST touches home another great cross from Salinas by the near post. Philadelphia is riding the momentum train.

—————-

60th Minute – Seitz was ALL over that PK. As Rasheed Wallace would say, Ball Don't Lie. Montero embellished on very little contact from Arrieta to draw the penalty.

—————-

60th Minute – SAVE SEITZ!!! HE STUFFS NOONAN!!

—————-

59th Minute – PENALTY!! Montero draws one for the Sounders!

—————-

58th Minute – Le Toux spearheads a Philly attack by slidetackling a ball to Moreno down the right-hand side, but after a couple of dangerous balls, the Union can't get anything on goal. That PK has recharged the Philly fans and players.

—————-

56th Minute – Le Toux with the Union's first-ever home goal at PPL Park. He went to the right upper 90 with confidence to burn his former team and tie the score. Game on.

—————-

55th MinuteGOAL UNION!! SEBA LE TOUX BURIES THE PK! 1-1

—————-

54th Minute – Moreno draws it, and it's legit. Marshall swung and missed for a ball into the box and he hooked Moreno's leg in the process. Le Toux will step to the spot.

—————-

53rd Minute – PENALTY!! Union will have a chance to tie it up!

—————-

51st Minute – Califf with a strong tackle to break up a Seattle counterattack. Zakuani would've been free down the left if that doesn't happen.

—————-

50th Minute – Moreno draws an iffy foul after being bumped by Ljungberg. The irony there is riveting.

—————-

49th Minute – Sons of Ben with their first real chance to make an impact in this game. They're right on top of Keller's goal.

—————-

47th Minute – SAVE KELLER! He somehow gets back to the line to clear the ball after coming off to try and punch away the corner. The ball deflected to Mwanga and his header was goal-bound.

—————-

47th Minute – Salinas makes another nice run down the right and earns a corner. He's done well coming up in attack.

—————-

46th Minute - Second half is underway, Union with possession. Does the home team have a USMNT-like comeback in them?

—————-

HALFTIME – As far as changes go, neither team needs to make one really. Philadelphia's attack was getting the job done, it just needs to get more efficient in the attacking third. For Seattle, no attack-minded subs are necessary, but the unit on the field needs to do better at securing possession.

—————-

HALFTIME – 1-0 Sounders at the half. Philly dominated the run of play, but Seattle finished its only real chance. Sometimes that's all you need to do.

—————-

45th Minute – Mwanga's header off a corner goes high. A little bit of the life has been sucked out of the Union fans.

—————-

45th Minute – Wow. Seattle has no business being in the lead, but give the Sounders credit for finishing their chance. Zakuani started the attack wide on the left and found Montero at the top of area. The striker got a touch on it to spring Noonan free in the box, and there was nothing Seitz could've done about that. Point-blank range.

—————-

45th MinuteGOAL SOUNDERS!! PAT NOONAN WITH THE FINISH! 1-0 SEATTLE!

—————-

41st Minute – Arrieta's header is wayward. Seattle takes over. Can the Sounders put together anything resembling an attack in the final few minutes of the half?

—————-

41st Minute – Le Toux's free kick from 25 yards deflects off the wall for a corner.

—————-

39th Minute – Seitz swats a Ljungberg cross from Noonan's reach. First real action for the Union keeper.

—————-

38th Minute – Salinas' cross from the right just misses a sliding Torres by the far post. Philadelphia stretching the field well.

—————-

37th Minute – Osvaldo Alonso and Brad Evans are sorely missed by the Seattle midfield today. No possession whatsoever for the guys in green.

—————-

36th Minute – Another diving save by Keller, as Le Toux pounces on a free ball 20 yards from goal.

—————-

33rd Minute – Mwanga comes close!! His chip from 20 yards hits off the right goal support! What a chance for the No. 1 pick in the MLS SuperDraft. Just wide.

—————-

31st Minute – Zakuani finds Montero for a free header in the area, but the Colombian can't elevate enough to get it on target. Better from Seattle. Zakuani needs the ball more.

—————-

29th Minute – Mwanga and Moreno almost link up for another scoring chance. Mwanga, Moreno and Le Toux look pretty in sync tonight. First corner in PPL Park history upcoming.

—————-

28th Minute – Le Toux probably should've done better there. Marshall whiffed on a clearance attempt, and Le Toux barely gets some force behind a shot from the right edge of the penalty area.

—————-

27th Minute – SAVE KELLER! He stuffs a Le Toux attempt from 20 yards and straightaway by diving to his right. Nice curling run from Le Toux, and there's the game's first real dangerous moment.

—————-

25th Minute – Torres with a cross to the near post from the left, but only Keller's in the vicinity of the ball.

—————-

24th Minute – Run of play starting to even out a bit as the Sounders have weathered the early storm. Crucial for them.

—————-

21st Minute – Mwanga nods a ball over the defense looking for Moreno in the box, but Keller makes a confident decision to snag the ball.

—————-

20th Minute – Patrick Ianni trips up Le Toux just outside of the center circle and he picks up what is the first of sure to be a handful of cards tonight. Yellow for Ianni.

—————-

18th Minute – Zakuani and Montero have maybe three touches between them. That's not gonna get the job done for Seattle.

—————-

16th Minute – I gotta say, soccer without the vuvuzelas is a beautiful thing.

—————-

14th Minute – Fred goes over the top looking for Le Toux, but Marshall gets to it first, playing it back almost into his own net, but it gets to Keller.

—————-

14th Minute – Seattle with its first foray forward, but Seitz clears Noonan's ball into the area. Ljungberg getting booed loudly every time he touches the ball.

—————-

12th Minute – There are a few boats on the river a couple hundred yards from the stadium. People on the boats can see the videoboard in the stadium. Best seats out of the house right there.

—————-

10th Minute – Le Toux with a teasing ball from right to left that's out of reach for a streaking Torres, and Seattle will be able to obtain some possession.

—————-

9th Minute – Philadelphia pressuring early. This team wants the opening goal, badly.

—————-

8th Minute – A Union official told me that you can actually see the field from the Barry Bridge. If you're following along from your car on the way to the stadium, please keep both hands on the wheel.

—————-

7th Minute – Moreno's chip is too far for Mwanga, as Keller comes off his line to beat the rookie to the ball.

—————-

6th Minute – A nice piece of Union possession ends when Torres' chip is too far from Mwanga. Philly looks confident early.

—————-

6th Minute – There are about 20 Sounders fans tucked away in northwest corner of the stadium. Bravo for making the cross-country trip.

—————-

5th Minute – Montero takes a dive as the boo birds come out. Early free kick from deep out on the left side for the Sounders.

—————-

3rd Minute – Salinas with a nice run down the right but his cross is cleared by Marshall.

—————-

2nd Minute – A few long balls both ways as the teams try to test each other's shape early.

—————-

1st Minute - And PPL Park is officially open for business, as the Seattle Sounders take the opening kick.

—————-

PREGAME – Great use of the river, as fireworks shoot off during the national anthem. This venue is one of the league's crown jewels. Can the team's play match that? Therein lies the big question. The Union are off to a 2-7-1 start, but eight of their 10 matches have come on the road while they waited for PPL Park to open up. Their second season officially begins today.

—————-

PREGAME – This place is rocking as the players come out of the tunnel. Blue and yellow confetti rains from the sky as Philadelphia fans approach the moment they've been waiting for.

—————-

PREGAME – My prediction is 2-1 Union. The team opening its new stadium always has a bit of an edge. Who do you think wins the match?

—————-

PREGAME – Baldomero Toldeo is tonight's referee. Over/under on players left on the pitch at the end of the game is 20.5.

—————-

PREGAME – Another interesting feature about the stadium is that the player's tunnel is located in the heart of the end of the stadium where the Sons of Ben sit. Advantage Union, disadvantage opposition.

—————-

PREGAME – If you want to read more about PPL Park, go here.

—————-

PREGAME – PPL Park is picturesque. It's located right on the shore of the Delaware river, adjacent to the Commodore Barry Bridge, making the sightlines truly unique.

Unfortunately for Freddie Ljungberg, he can't actually dive into the river from the pitch. (Let Nowak v. Ljungberg II begin).

—————-

PREGAME – Nate Jaqua makes his return to the bench after missing the first part of the season with a torn abdominal muscle. Sigi Schmid will definitely welcome him back with open arms, considering the difficulties Seattle has had in the attacking third this season.

—————-

PREGAME – Here are tonight's starting lineups:

SEATTLE SOUNDERS

–Montero—–Ljungberg—–Noonan–

—Zakuani——Ianni——-Vagenas—

–Gonzalez–Parke—Marshall–Riley–

——————–Keller——————

SUBS: Seamon, Nyassi, Wahl, Sturgis, Levesque, Jaqua, Boss

PHILADELPHIA UNION

———Mwanga——–Moreno——–

—-Torres——-Fred——-Le Toux—

—————Miglioranzi————–

–Salinas–Harvey–Califf–Arrieta–

——————Seitz—————–

SUBS: Stahl, Okugo, McInerney, Zimmerman, Thomas, Jacobson, Knighton

This entry was posted in MLS- Philadelphia Union, MLS- Seattle Sounders. Bookmark the permalink.

38 Responses to Seattle Sounders FC at Philadelphia Union: Match Night Commentary

  1. Second City says:

    Looking forward to seeing this new stadium.

    Also, why do I continue to see on the ESPN scroll ” This match is being played in Philadelphia due to the G-20 Summit “?

    The G-20 Summit is taking place in Toronto, if I’m not mistaken. Right?
    ========================

    Sidenote: Would love to see the US cap Mwanga.

  2. Russ says:

    The Phillies Blue Jays series was supposed to be in Toronto, but they are playing in Philadelphia. It has nothing to do with the Union Sounders game.

  3. Second City says:

    Ah, that would explain it.

    I suppose I saw Philly and associated automatically with the Union since I have soccer on the brain.

  4. gred says:

    excited to see it too, hopefully they didnt make the attendance too small though.

    Go sounders!

  5. Jamez says:

    I think Noona is playing in the middle Ives. Bergs is going to be on the right wing.

  6. Josh Marcinik says:

    Go UNION!

    A 2-1 victory for the home team sounds right.

  7. yacob says:

    im thinkin an exciting 3-2 sounders victory
    (dont actually think they can score that much however, please get here asap blaise!)

  8. Jim says:

    PU dominating possession early.

  9. Fred Garvin says:

    ESPN play by play — homerville

  10. Jim says:

    ESPN, great job guys, I want to hear bleating nonsense by ex-players over the crowd. Too bad the SAP button doesn’t blank them out.

  11. vuvuzela lover says:

    anyone else actually kinda miss the vuvuzelas?

  12. trez says:

    definitely didnt see this happening, philly is dominating right now

  13. Barry U says:

    Mwanga for US? I am thinking 2014 already.

  14. political noob says:

    what exactly is the g20 summit anyway

  15. izler says:

    me2, so dissapointed, i think well have an even more talented team in 2014 though

  16. NomadWarrior says:

    OHHHHHH yea, there we go seattle, totally against the run of play and i love it!

  17. NYC says:

    Why won’t ESPN let Max Bretos do commentary?

  18. Fred Garvin says:

    Pat “#1PPL” Noonan

  19. Adriano says:

    Our 2014 squad will be an elite team if players pan out.

    Luis Gil and Jack Mac in front of Bradley in the middle.

  20. seattlefan says:

    Does anyone have a working stream for this game? I don’t have ESPN. Justin.tv doesn’t have anything either.

  21. LittleMaradona says:

    Anyone know when Nfuko is coming?

  22. Brent McD. says:

    +1

  23. noonan says:

    horrible pk

  24. ShaggyReAL says:

    It’s where the 20 most powerful nations meet to figure out how to keep all the other countries down.

    Ala, the BCS committee

  25. ShaggyReAL says:

    I don’t think he is American. Sorry to spoil it for you.

  26. ShaggyReAL says:

    Did Seitz really stop a PK? Wow!

  27. Big Phil says:

    Just tuned in. Has Seattle seemed noticeably better than they were before the break?

  28. Big Phil says:

    Nice save by Keller…

  29. LittleMaradona says:

    Not really

  30. Pappajohn says:

    Max is OK, but I like Kyle Martino better. I think he’s doing a great job.

  31. Pappajohn says:

    The Union is fun to watch. Their passes are crisp and accurate. They have a lot of energy and stamina. They play aggressively. Sort of like those great DC United teams of a few years back. What was the DC coach’s name? …Oh yeah, Peter Nowack.

  32. Illmatic74 says:

    Seitz is a lot better than he was early in the season.

  33. t says:

    this was a total dismantling of the sounders by the union. great job opening your park guys. wonderful to see seba LeToux getting the praise he deserves.
    Go Sounders!!

  34. phillypride says:

    Great showing by the Union! I just got back from the game and the supporters’ section was rocking. I know we’ll only get louder from here.

    Funniest chant: Kasey Keller, old as Jesus.

    I loved the enthusiasm of the players after the game and their evident appreciation of the fans. LeToux made it a point to walk around the whole field applauding the fans. A couple of players jumped up into the supporters’ section. Califf jumped up and down pointing at the supporters and beaming like a little kid. It was quite the love fest!

  35. phillypride says:

    Oh! I almost forgot that Nowak pumped his fist, then ran and jumped to high five supporters as he left the field. Maybe others of you have been there before, but having never had a home team before, I was on cloud nine.

  36. Second City says:

    Reportedly, Bretos has been quite emphatic to commentate games. Apparently, attempts have gone something like this:
    ===========================
    [Bretos enters producers office]

    Bretos says, ” YYYYEEEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSS! ”

    Producers respond, ” NNOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! ”

    [Bretos exits producers office]
    ===========================
    This is according to my sources, of course.