It was certainly a sight to behold on Sunday in Nashville. Nashville SC debuted its new stadium GEODIS Park, the largest soccer-specific stadium in the United States, and the crowd made their presence known early.
Philadelphia Union head coach Jim Curtin called the stadium the loudest the Union has faced all season. Not letting the moment get to them, the Union held the opposition to a 1-1 draw.
In 2022 it should surprise no MLS fan just how good Andre Blake is. The two-time MLS Goalkeeper of the Year is among the elite in between the sticks on the continent, one of the best to ever put on the uniform for Philadelphia.
Still, Blake managed to outdo somehow outdo even himself on the nationally television marquee match of the weekend.
Blake made possibly the save of the season, denying Alex Muyl at point-blank range off of a cross. The home side easily could have scored multiple times, Blake standing tall until a penalty in the 85th minute snatched a clean sheet away. Again, without Blake, a hard-earned draw would have likely been a defeat.
“We need Andre,” Curtin said. “He’s the best goalkeeper in the league and he showed that today.”
In addition to Blake’s stellar performance, Mikael Uhre showed just why the Union splashed the cash on him this offseason, tallying his first goal for the club.
“It’s a relief to score my first goal,” Uhre said. “I’ve been working really hard and it’s nice to see one go in.”
Curtin was also pleased with his striker’s performance, stating that he’s “giving us a dynamic we didn’t have last year.”
Despite heading into the game as underdogs given the situation, the Union were once again able to come away with a point in a hard-fought game on the road. They will have another tough test Saturday against top Western Conference side LAFC, but the team is not scared to play anywhere.
“Tonight was a reminder that we can go anywhere and play,” Blake said.