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Dockal debuts as Union draw Crew, 0-0

The Union will now head into another bye week after drawing Columbus at home.

MLS: Columbus Crew at Philadelphia Union Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

The Union failed to find the back of the net on Bořek Dočkal’s debut, drawing Columbus Crew SC, 0-0.

After missing the home opener two weeks ago, Dočkal made his first appearance for the Blue and Gold at the number 10. In his 77 minutes of play, the Czech international logged two shots but hardly had an effect in the final third.

“My performance can always be better,” Dočkal said in his post-match press conference. “I expect much more from myself.”

Throughout the match, the Union looked sloppy in the offensive end. Despite holding a healthy portion of the possession in the first half, the Union did not threaten Crew goalkeeper Zack Steffen on their single shot on target, a free-kick dribber right to the chest of Steffen in the 22nd minute.

The sputtering offense failed to find their footing in the second half. It wasn’t for lack of trying, however. The Union found themselves in good spots throughout the match, but sent their shots far into the small but vocal crowd at Talen Energy Stadium.

On a day with little going right for the offense, the young backline made their presence felt. On one of their only real tests of the day, Auston Trusty made an excellent recovery to hassle Gyasi Zardes into a weak shot right at Andre Blake in the 64th minute.

Prior to his breakaway, Zardes almost netted in the 51st minute, but sent his header wide of net. Union head coach Jim Curtin heaped praise upon his back four, who did well to deal with the challenges of Columbus’s Zardes, Federico Higuaín, and Pedro Santos. Through two matches, the Union’s young defensive unit has yet to concede a goal.

In injury news, Fabinho was substituted off at halftime due to a leg injury. Ray Gaddis lined up at left back to start the second half. There’s currently no word on the extent of Fabinho’s injury.

The Union will now have another bye week before going on the road to take on the Colorado Rapids. Last season, the Union were awful on the road, going 1-10-6 for a paltry nine points in 17 road games. They’ll try to reverse their fortunes away from home on the March 31st, at 9 P.M.