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Union draw Atlanta United 1-1, advance to Champions League semifinal

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The Union conceded late in the first half but sealed it with a late goal to beat Atlanta United 4-1 on aggregate and book a spot in the semifinal in August

Carl Gulbish

The Philadelphia Union are heading to the semifinals of the Concacaf Champions League.

Let that set in for a minute.

A 3-0 advantage heading to the second leg of the quarterfinal tonight at Subaru Park in Chester was the Union’s greatest weapon and despite leaving the door open conceding a goal late in the first half they’re moving on with a 1-1 draw and a 4-1 win on aggregate over the two-leg quarterfinal.

Atlanta United broke the Union’s scoreless streak through their first three CCL games with a goal in first half stoppage time from Santiago Sosa assisted by Marcelino Moreno.

The Union came out aggressive on the attack and created some chances to put the game away but it wasn’t until a counter attack in the 89th minute that head coach Jim Curtin and the Union faithful were able to really let the reality of their fortune set in.

That it was Kacper Przybylko putting the nail in the coffin off a nice aggressive play from Cory Burke was appropriate since it was his two goals and an assist in Atlanta that created the three-goal cushion last week.

If there is a negative to take away from the game it’s the fact that Jamiro Monteiro will miss the first leg of the semifinals after picking up his second yellow of the tournament. Matt Real, who subbed on for Anthony Fontana, also picked up his second yellow and will miss the first leg.

On the plus side, the Union have time to refocus on their league campaign that has sputtered out of the gate with a scoreless draw and two straight home losses. The first leg of the semifinal won’t be played until the second week of August against the winner of the Portland Timbers and Club America. The Union will host the second leg at Subaru Park the second week of September.