Cory Burke and Fafa Picault picked up right where they left off leading the team in goals last season with goals in the Philadelphia Union’s 3-2 win over the New York Red Bulls in the first scrimmage of 2019 in Florida on Wednesday afternoon.
Burke found the back of the net off a pass from Ilsinho in the 15th minute to put the Union up 1-0. Burke started up top with marquee off-season acquisition Sergio Santos in a 4-4-2 while Ilsinho lined up in the attacking midfielder role along with Warren Creavalle, Alejandro Bedoya and Haris Medunjanin in the midfield.
Ilsinho. @CoryBur78195507. You've seen it before, but never in 2019 - the Union's first preseason goal is on the board! Follow along here: https://t.co/ujSEf3XWuv#FloriDOOP #ThisIsPhilly pic.twitter.com/BvDTT736ZX— Philadelphia Union (@PhilaUnion) January 30, 2019
Fafa Picault and CJ Sapong replaced Santos and Burke a little over a half hour in and connected right after halftime to double the lead. They were later replaced by David Accam and Kacper Przybylko for the final half hour of the match.
Accam helped set up the third goal when Matthew Real was able to spring forward and set him up for a shot attempt that led to a goal for Anthony Fontana off the rebound. Fontana would later see a second yellow, but since it was a scrimmage Bethlehem Steel midfielder Zach Zandi was able to replace him off the bench.
The Red Bulls made things interesting late with a pair of goals off a penalty and set piece. Alex Muyl drew the penalty and converted from the spot to make it 3-1 and Amro Tarek headed home a set piece to make it 3-2 but that would hold up as the final scoreline.
Head coach Jim Curtin used 26 players on the day, including everyone available from the first team roster (Auston Trusty and Mark McKenzie are still away on international duty), Bethlehem Steel FC-rostered players Ben Ofeimu, Michee Ngalina and Zach Zandi and Philadelphia Union Academy player Cole Turner. Turner, a Churchville, Maryland native who is committed to the Naval Academy for the fall, typically plays as a holding midfielder but came in off the bench to replace Jack Elliott.
Philadelphia Union Lineup
Andre Blake (Carlos Miguel Coronel, Matthew Freese), Fabinho (Matthew Real), Aurelien Collin (Ben Ofeimu*), Jack Elliott (Cole Turner^), Ray Gaddis (Olivier Mbaizo), Haris Medunjanin (Derrick Jones), Warren Creavalle (Michee Ngalina*), Alejandro Bedoya (Anthony Fontana, Zach Zandi*), Ilsinho (Brenden Aaronson), Sergio Santos (Fafa Picault, David Accam), Cory Burke (CJ Sapong, Kacper Przybylko)
Streeeeetch them legs! First preseason scrimmage of 2019 for the Union, and @NewYorkRedBulls is the opponent. Here's the starting XI but expect plenty of changes throughout the game.— Philadelphia Union (@PhilaUnion) January 30, 2019
Follow along with all the action here: https://t.co/ujSEf3XWuv#DOOP pic.twitter.com/cbVnFPHRep
The team will be back in action on Saturday at 7 p.m. against the University of South Florida at Joe DiMaggio Sports Complex in Clearwater.