The Philadelphia Union tied in stunning fashion to Atlanta United on Sunday afternoon, as the Union scored a pair of goals late in a 2-2 tie to earn one incredible road point.
The Union’s late-game goals from Cory Burke and Jakob Glesnes were enough to offset the goal scored by Atlanta’s Anton Walkes and Kacper Przybylko’s own goal, as Philadelphia left Mercedes Benz Stadium celebrating while Atlanta shook their heads at their own collapse. The tie keeps the Union in third place in the Eastern Conference while dropping Atlanta to ninth.
As both teams came off of a three-week international break, Atlanta and Philadelphia looked to both force their way up the MLS standings with three crucial points, and they both played like it. The first minutes of action saw both teams with good chances in the box, though neither were able to capitalize. While Atlanta was able to force Andre Blake to make some solid saves, and the Union put their own strong shots against Brad Guzan, neither were able to see the fruits of their labor.
Much of the first half was taken up by Sergio Santos’ injuries, as he found himself down for extended periods of time three times in just the opening forty-five. Santos’ suffered a blow to the head, which plagued him through the end of the half, and he left the game to be substituted for Cory Burke at halftime.
While the Union had played well for much of the first half, they came into the second half looking considerably weaker, something only accentuated by Kacper Przybylko’s own goal at 58’. Przybylko was unable to read an Atlanta corner kick, and instead of heading the ball away from the box, he instead put it in the back of his own net.
After Przybylko’s own goal, the Union looked considerably more sloppy, something which Atlanta was able to use to their advantage. Twenty-five minutes after Przybylko’s own goal, Atlanta’s Anton Walkes put a second shot in the back of the net on another corner at 83’ as the home team put themselves up 2-0 late in the game.
However, the Union wasn’t out of the game yet, as they forced a quick shot on Guzan from Jamiro Monteiro. When Guzan was unable to control the ball, Cory Burke swooped in to make it a 2-1 game, and the Union were back in the chase.
As the 90th minute came around, the Union found themselves with a blessing from the officiating crew: seven minutes of added time. As both teams found themselves fighting for every inch of turf, the Union’s savior arrived in the form of Glesnes, who shot from 30+ yards out and the ball bounced off the crossbar three times before it crossed the goal line, granting the Union the tying goal at 90’ + 3’. Five minutes later, the referee blew the final whistle, as the Union celebrated around Glesnes, as they left Atlanta after one of the most impressive finishes in club history.
The Union will return home for a match against Columbus Crew SC on Wednesday evening, in a battle between two Eastern Conference powerhouses, as both teams fight their way up the standings.