The Philadelphia Union won most every statistical category on Sunday night except one - the score. As Head Coach Ben Olsen noted, “It wasn’t the greatest performance, but that’s what you’ve gotta do these days.” Here are some of the numbers that help tell the story of United's critical road win.
One maybe the loneliest number, but it gave Head Coach Ben Olsen comfort on Thursday night. Olsen made a single substitution in the match - Maicon Santos for Branko Boskovic in the 57th minute - and it paid off. Santos made the pass that sprung Chris Pontius on a long run into the Philadelphia 18-yard box. Pontius cut back and chipped a pass to Lionard Pajoy, who silenced PPL park with a match winning goal.
The number one was also relevant to the former Union forward. Pajoy finished the night with one goal, on one shot on goal.
This year’s previous two MLS matches between United and Union resulted in referees issuing 14 cards (5 on June 16 and 9 on August 19). Despite 27 total fouls in the match, referee Baldomero Toledo didn't reach for his pocket on Thursday night. It was the first time in six previous meetings a United vs Union MLS match ended without a caution or ejection.
It may not have been Bill Hamid's best match for United, but he got the job done. The third-year goalkeeper made five saves on a night in which Philadelphia out shot DC 14 to 7 and picked up his sixth shutout of the year.
With the win, the Black-and-Red moved into 4th place in the tight Eastern Conference. Only nine points separate first and sixth place in the standings.