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Game Thread: Union defeat Red Bulls to advance to Open Cup quarterfinals

The Open Cup rivalry continues.

MLS: Philadelphia Union at New York Red Bulls Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

And that’s it!

The Union prevail, 2-1, over their northern rivals in a very exciting Open Cup clash. Goals from Haris Medunjanin and Cory Burke were enough to withstand a late rally from the Red Bulls, who found a goal through substitute Bradley Wright-Phillips. It’s a wonder how that one ended with only three goals, considering that there were a combined 35 shots, 13 of them on goal.

The Union have now clinched a berth in the Open Cup quarterfinals for the fifth time in their history. They’ll host either D.C. United or Orlando City SC on July 18th.

Blake holds the lead

The ‘keeper got down quickly to get a finger to Kaku’s low, goal-bound blast in the 81st minute. The save was Blake’s fifth and finest of the night.

Bradley Wright-Phillips pulls the Red Bulls back into it

BWP has cut his side’s deficit to one with 15 minutes remaining. He slipped off Mark McKenzie’s back shoulder to get on the end of a through ball from Kaku, and then coolly finished as he’s always done for the Red Bulls.

Burke makes it two!

Finally! After finding gaps in the Red Bulls back line all night, Cory Burke’s finally capped off his hard work with a goal. The through ball came from Alejandro Bedoya, who’s assisted on both goals and created many more chances. Burke’s tidy first touch allowed him to open up his hips and slot the ball past Luis Robles to the far post.

Medunjanin’s blast puts the Union up

Haris finally found the game’s first goal. After shimmying past Tyler Adams, Medunjanin struck a speculative effort from distance, beating Luis Robles with the help of a deflection. This was his fourth career goal for the Union in all competitions.

New York comes close

Just four minutes into the second half, Kemar Lawrence rattled the bar in what was the Red Bulls’ best chance of the game. Marc Rzatkowski had a chance to blast home the rebound, but he sent the ball into the stands.

Cory Burke

Strengths: Making Aurelien Collin look like a child

Weaknesses: Scoring

Burke, again

He’s finding all the space in the world against a Red Bull three-man back line that has been absolutely shambolic tonight, but he just cannot put the ball in the back of the net. This time he skied a rebound over the crossbar from close range after Robles pushed Picault’s curling shot into his path.

Burke nods one wide

With a beautiful cross from Fafa Picault inbound, the forward found himself goalside of Hassan Ndam, but couldn’t redirect the ball on goal. After some good work in the buildup, Burke did well to find himself in space, though he should’ve come away from that sequence with a goal to his name.

Cory Burke turned down twice in rapid succession

The forward found himself running at Luis Robles twice in the fifth and sixth minutes, but he was denied a goal on both occasions. He was slipped through by Alejandro Bedoya for his first chance, only to have his shot fly off Robles’s leg. Burke beat out Aurelien Collin again to get onto another through ball a minute later, but he was brought down—fairly, according to the official—by Hassan Ndam.

Starting lineups

The Union’s first team came to play tonight, as seven of 11 starters from last Friday’s loss to Toronto FC. The notable exceptions are Alejandro Bedoya and Haris Medunjanin, who served their MLS suspensions against TFC. In the attack, Marcus Epps makes way for Ilsinho, and Cory Burke gets the start over CJ Sapong, who is not in the matchday lineup.

The Red Bulls are going with a scheme that differs greatly from the one they used in their win over Seattle on Wednesday. Only four starters from that one appear in today’s lineup. The formation’s been tweaked as well, from a 4-2-3-1 to a three-back, with Kemar Lawrence and Connor Lade playing as wingbacks. Tyler Adams will anchor the midfield, as always, and he’ll be joined by Kaku, who is making his first appearance in two weeks. Scorching hot Bradley Wright-Phillips is on the bench, with Carlos Rivas running up top in his stead.

Stream the game here.