The Philadelphia Union vs FC Delco derby at the U17 age group on Sunday in Conshohocken was every bit as entertaining as advertised.
Coming off a tough 2-1 loss to Atlanta United on a late penalty kick the day before, the Union U17 starting lineup included players like Bajung Darboe, Nelson Pierre, Diego Lopez and Andrew Rick who had been with Union 2 for their game in Miami the day before.
Pierre opened the scoring inside 20 minutes when he was able to get to a ball Jack Brown sent over the top from the left flank. Minutes later, Caden Grabfelder was taken down in the box against his former team but Rick, who was named best goalkeeper at the MLS Next Cup in Texas, was able to deny Kaio Reis from the spot.
FC Delco was able to get the equalizer less than a minute later when Reis crossed the ball into Liam May and he was able to get enough of the ball with his head to beat Rick.
Luke Zielinski put the visitors back in front shortly after his entry into the match when defender Daniel Krueger was able to beat a defender into the box and set Zielinski up for the first time finish with his left foot.
Zielinski found the back of the net again minutes later but his goal was called back for an offsides and 15 minutes later FC Delco had another answer to tie the game. Again it was Grabfelder and May involved in the buildup that ended up with a goal credited to May on a ball he whipped in with two teammates running to goal.
Looking like the two rivals might share a point, the Union was able to find a late winner when Lopez fed a pass to Zielinski in the box and his shot deflected to Andrus in space and the left back placed a low left-footed shot in the right corner of the net in what was nearly the last play of the match.
The Union U17s have another two-game weekend coming up with two New Jersey teams coming to town. They play the New York Red Bulls at 10 a.m. tomorrow at the Power Training Complex and Cedar Stars Monmouth at YSC Sports on Sunday at noon.