Volkswagen Keys to the Match: Philadelphia Union
When D.C. United and Philadelphia meet this weekend, it’llbe the third match of 2012 between the two regional rivals. We take a look at some of the keys toSunday’s affair:
TURNING ON IN TRANSITION
In recent weeks, Philadelphia has struggled mightily todefend while in transition. BothMontreal and Chicago found loads of success in the counter-attack, and ifUnited can do the same they should create plenty of chances against the Union. The Fire were extremely effective,using a combination of accurate long balls and Chris Rolfe’s speed to undo thePhilly defense. D.C.’s speedy trioof Chris Pontius, Nick DeLeon and Andy Najar – who always seems to play well inthis series - could be set up for a fruitful evening.
Zac MacMath is a quality goalkeeper, but – as many youngnetminders do – the University of Maryland product has had his share ofdifficulties this season. AgainstChicago, his late reaction on a Fire corner kick allowed Arne Friedrich to slipa header in on the near post. Inthe second half of the same match, an outside the box blast from theaforementioned Rolfe seemed to surprise the 21-year-old. D.C. has consistently created chancesat home, but should look to do so early in hopes of putting MacMath on hisheels.
FINDING THE F’S
There are two players that must be accounted for at alltimes for Philly: Freddy Adu and Michael Farfan. Farfan has the dazzling one-on-one skill to break down adefense, and once he gets going, has the quickness to make those moves evenmore lethal. Adu is more likely tobreak a team down with a slick through-ball, like he did to eliminate D.C. fromthe U.S. Open Cup at the beginning of June. The former United man’s most frustrating trait – his tendencyto go quiet for long stretches - may also be his most dangerous as it makes himthat much easier to lose track of.
D.C. United meets the Philadelphia Union at 5:00PM this Sunday at RFK Stadium- PURCHASE TICKETS ONLINE