Old Man And The Diving Header: Chivas USA 0-3 Philadelphia Union

Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

Also an acceptable scoreline: Philadelphia Union 1, Officials 2, Chivas USA 0. But a win's a win when the refs' wins do not count in the standings. Yes, I went for a Hemingway reference in that headline.

I'd really like to talk at length about this game. Really. The Union won by a convincing score line and outplayed a lesser opposition. There was also a lot to talk about with questionable officiating as well. But as I type this it is well past midnight and my thoughts are scattered and all over the place, so bullet point recap, ahoy!

  • John Hackworth started Fred tonight. Yes, that Fred. No, I'm not joking. Many jokes were had. Many 2010 memories were shared. Many tears were shed. It was as if Zach Pfeiffer Pfeffer had been sent to the principal's office.
  • The Union outplayed Chivas USA, who illustrated precisely why they are up there in terms of worst teams in MLS. The Union started out with playing high line daring Chivas to hit them on the counter attack. Chivas never hit them on the counter attack. Or any other type of attack. MacMath's only shot faced of the night came from a bad angle; easy save on an easy night.
  • The 3-0 scoreline flatters the Union in the sense that two goals were the direct result of dubious officiating. The first goal came on a penalty due to an apparent handball in the box where the lack of solid camera angles made it real difficult to tell what exactly the ball did or did not hit. A free kick had rocketed into the arm of Martin Rivero inside the box and referee Allen Chapman pointed to the spot. Conor Casey converted it to put the Union up 1-0, but even if by the letter of the law that was a penalty, it all felt a bit harsh from Chapman.
  • The second Union goal came following a perfect Cristian Maidana cross. Casey followed that cross into the box with a splendid diving header. Chivas goalkeeper Dan Kennedy had no chance and given Chivas's lack of offensive threat through the first 66 minutes, it was safe to say the Union had pocketed three points from StubHub Center tonight.
  • The fun was not over, though. Allen Chapman found himself back in the spotlight again when Maidana scored a goal where Andrew Wenger dummied in Kennedy's path. The ball went through Wenger's legs and into the net with Kennedy unable to do anything about it, and though the game was pretty much out of reach, Kennedy left the play completely irate.
  • To cap off the night, Oswaldo Minda got himself a straight red card for a kicking foul on Maurice Edu. It had all gone wrong for Chivas.
  • The Union are not a very good soccer team. Chivas USA are worse.
  • I picked the wrong day to read a long article on match fixing.

Stay tuned for more on this match at The Brotherly Game. Meanwhile next up for the Union is a return home on June 7 where they will face the Vancouver Whitecaps.

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