Union show good form against Manchester United in 1-0 loss

PHILADELPHIA - JULY 21: Danny Mwanga #10 of the Philadelphia Union takes a shot on goal in front of Wes Brown #6 of Manchester United at Lincoln Financial Field on July 21 2010 in Philadelphia Pennsylvania. (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)

Wow.  If anyone ever needs a canonical example of "rising to the occasion" it would be last night's friendly against mighty Manchester United.  The Philadelphia Union, an expansion MLS team, held the world's richest and most popular soccer side scoreless for 76 minutes.

We saw what this young Union team was capable of last night and it was fantastic.  They kept their poise, held the ball and picked their moments to attack.

Mwanga had some terrific moments and one brilliant take in particular.  He nearly assisted Le Toux to a finish on a fast break that rolled just wide.  We kept United on their toes and in the end had more shots on goal.

To be fair to the Red Devils: we didn't play the real Manchester United.  We played a group in preseason form mixed with young potential players and old stars.  Make no mistake though: every player on that squad is world class.  They flubbed a few chances and didn't get the shots on net.  The Union kept the pressure on and the defense did well to disrupt their opportunities.

Major props have to go to the backup keepers that got the nods last night: Brad Knighton and Brian Perk.  Both did well on the whole and had memorable stops against Manchester United.  Perk made 1 or 2 major mistakes in the game but the experience should serve him well.  Its good to know we have 2 guys behind Seitz that are seeing some playing time in these friendlies and have shown their mettle against Celtic FC and ManU.

Sir Alex Ferguson's thoughts on the match:

 

"I thought they played better than we expected," Ferguson said. "I think they had two or three decent chances in the match, and our goalkeeper had a couple good saves.

 

"It’s a bit misleading, their position [in the standings], as they’ve had to play quite a few games on the road before their stadium was ready. The evidence tonight is that they look healthy enough."

 

Ferguson said he was impressed by the Union's midfield and that from the opening whistle they gave his team trouble.

 

"It was the sort of game that we needed," said the Scot of the tightly contested 1-0 affair. "I think that the Union played really powerful and aggressive. They got to the ball really quickly and made it difficult for us."

 

I couldn't be happier with the Union's effort.  Manchester United is an institution with over 132 years under its belt.  We're only halfway into year 1.  Here's to the next 131 years.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Brotherly Game

You must be a member of Brotherly Game to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Brotherly Game. You should read them.

Join Brotherly Game

You must be a member of Brotherly Game to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Brotherly Game. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9353_tracker