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Two Arrieta Goals Leave Union With Big Deficit at Halftime in Columbus

Two goals late in the first half left one team smiling as it entered its locker room in Columbus, but the Philadelphia Union weren't that club.

Jairo Arrieta, formerly of Deportivo Saprissa, put the Columbus Crew ahead 1-0 in the 45th minute, after Sheanon Williams, once again starting at his unnatural left back position, and Amobi Okugo both had major gaffes defensively. Williams failed to pressure , who crossed the ball to Arrieta in the box.

The Costa Rican striker, whose form since joining the Crew may well earn him a national team call up, beat Okugo and found the right side of the Union net, past Zac MacMath.

Only minutes later it appeared that Okugo and the Union responded with a goal of their own. However, Okugo, upon replay, clearly used his hand to score off of a free kick and the referee cautioned him for his Diego Maradona like attempt.

The fourth official held up his board signifying five minutes of stoppage time, which did not bode well for the Union. The Crew had found momentum after the Arrieta goal and made Philadelphia pay for their inability to control possession or create their own attack.

Milovan Mirosevic set up Arrieta for another opportunity on net in the fifth minute of stoppage time. Arrieta was able to control Mirosevic's pass with great precision and turned Gaddis, while also moving past two other defenders.

A shot to the lower right corner of the Union net once again beat MacMath, who was not helped by his back four.

The Union have struggled to make use of anything that Michael Farfan has produced out of the center of the midfield, leaving the 24-year-old with only frustration in spite of him providing great service to his teammates.

A loss or tie by the Union, or a Houston Dynamo win over the New England Revolution tonight, will officially eliminate the Union from playoff contention.