WASHINGTON, D.C. — A Kacper Przybylko goal in first half stoppage time that was initially called offsides held up as the Philadelphia Union ground out another three points in a 1-0 win over I-95 rivals DC United on a humid night.
The win pushed the Union up the Eastern Conference standings, sitting one point behind Orlando City SC and three points behind the New England Revolution.
While the Union certainly seemed to have more energy against D.C. than in past matches after a week-long rest since their match against the New York Red Bulls, Philadelphia didn’t demonstrate control of the game through much of the match, while D.C. led in just about every offense category.
D.C. led in possession by a few points and took 10 more shots and five more shots on goal than the Union. Meanwhile, the Union led in saves after an impressive performance by Andre Blake and the backline.
At the end of the match, the Union led in the most important statistic: goals. Przybylko’s first-half stoppage goal gave the Union the only score of the game. After a go-ahead pass from Jamiro Monteiro, Przybylko beat the D.C. defense and slipped the ball past Jon Kempin, only to be flagged for offsides by the assistant referee. However, a VAR review saved Przybylko, and after a recommendation by Video Assistant Referee Jorge Gonzalez and a quick review by Referee Timothy Ford, Przybylko’s goal was restored.
Przybylko’s goal came after the Union controlled the back end of the first half at Audi Field, though that kind of control couldn’t be said for the rest of the game. After the half, D.C. pushed back against the Union, trying to find their equalizer to avoid a home loss. Meanwhile, the Union was unable to get any kind of offensive momentum, failing to even put a shot on the net in the second half.
Despite D.C.’s late-game push, it wasn’t enough for the home team to earn any points at home, as the Union’s defense held strong in the final minutes to secure three very important points.
Almost as important as the Union’s victory was the introduction of the Union’s newest signing, Daniel Gazdag. The Hungary international subbed in during the second half.
Gazdag had arrived in Philadelphia on Friday, trained on Saturday and came on for Jose Martinez in his MLS debut tonight. He had a quiet introduction, taking one shot and completing all of his passes in his 23-minute stint.
The Union will get another week-long break before their match against Portland in a 75% full Subaru Park on Sunday, May 30, which will be their last game heading into a three-week break.