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Unbeaten teams clash with Minnesota United in town for afternoon match



Two of the five remaining unbeaten teams in MLS will clash in a rare afternoon match at Subaru Park today as Minnesota United puts their early hot start to the test in one of the toughest venues to play in in the league in recent years.

The Loons come in with three wins and a draw through their first four games and top the table in the Western Conference. Two of their three wins have come on the road.

“(Minnesota) is a team that has played some good soccer, very well coached, very organized and has had a week off to prepare so we know we’ll get their very best home in front of our home fans at Subaru Park,” Curtin said at a press conference on Friday. “We know that we have to be at our max to get a result.”

The Union picked up their first win of the season in Portland last Saturday after a trio of draws to start the season amidst their Champions Cup run. The win was a shot in the arm for a team missing so many players on international duty and while some were still getting back this week, head coach Jim Curtin had a full week of training to prep. His side remains healthy with the exception of Leon Flach.

“To have a week on the training field with the guys I think is very valuable,” Curtin said. “We have the full squad to choose from now.”

Both teams have scored 8 goals to start the season. Bongokuhle Hlongwane, Robin Lod and Teemu Pukki each have two goals for the visitors while Alejandro Bran and Tani Oluwaseyi have made an impact off the bench.

Julian Carranza, Daniel Gazdag and Mikael Uhre all have two goals apiece of the Union in league play while Alejandro Bedoya and Quinn Sullivan each have one.

Defense has been the bigger concern this season with 6 goals conceded through four games.

“We’ve been on the road now for three games to finally come home,” Curtin said. “To protect home field is very important, but also to be tough to play against and not get beat during the course of the season.”

The Union has lost just once in their last 40 league games played along the banks of the Delaware River.

Today’s game will be played earlier than usual with a Kids Day-friendly kickoff at 2 p.m. Broadcast is on MLS Season Pass, which includes an option to switch over to the home radio commentary on 97.5 The Fanatic.

Matthew Ralph is the managing editor of Philadelphia Soccer Now / Brotherly Game. He's covered soccer at all levels for many years in the Philadelphia region and has also written for, NPSL, PrepSoccer and other publications. He lives with his wife and two young children in Broomall, Pa., but grew up in South Jersey and is originally from Kansas.

Copyright © 2024 Philadelphia Soccer Now and Brotherly Game

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