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Union earn road point in Harrison as playoff push continues

The Union tie the New York Red Bulls as they continue their late-season fight to stay above the red line.

MLS: Philadelphia Union at New York Red Bulls Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The Philadelphia Union entered their midweek match against the New York Red Bulls as one of the hotter teams in the Eastern Conference, fresh off of two straight home victories and looking for their first road win since May.

Red Bull, on the other hand, had also been on a winning streak and proved to be a formidable opponent for the Union, as New York looked to defend their home turf. Despite being the worse team in the standings, the Red Bulls held the Union back, and at times, looked to be the much better team.

From the opening whistle, New York looked to be dangerous, getting off three good chances to the Union’s one. For a team that suffers after early goals, the Red Bulls' early attack certainly worried some Union fans.

Soon enough though, the Union settled into their own, slowing the game down and getting into a more offensive position. Eventually, the Union got their goal, as a corner kick from Jamiro Monteiro in the 18th minute bounced around New York’s penalty area, eventually landing at the feet of Sergio Santos, who tapped the ball home, giving the Union a much needed 1-0 lead.

From that point, the Union kept the game slow and controlled, with Red Bulls getting the occasional chance; and with enough time and effort, New York found their equalizer. In the 38’, New York’s Omir Fernandez found himself with the ball around 25 yards from goal, and dribbled around the Union defense, finally beating Andre Blake with a well-placed ball on the right side of the net.

The score continued 1-1 for the rest of the game, with the only solid chance after Fernandez’s turned out to be another opportunity from Santos, only for his goal to be called back for offsides. Even as both sides found themselves lost in the passion of the rivalry, neither team was able to push the ball into the net one last time and left with a point apiece.

With that point earned at Red Bull Area, the Union moves up to fourth place in the Eastern Conference, tied with Atlanta and NYCFC for points and just one point ahead of Orlando. The team returns to Chester on Sunday to take on the Columbus Crew but will be without Jose Martinez after he earned a yellow card following an exchange with Cristian Cásseres Jr. It was one of six yellows shown by referee Alex Chilowicz, four of those to the Union (Jack Elliott, Kai Wagner and Andre Blake also went into the book).