Rematch for Philadelphia | The Journal of Montreal


With just three games left in the MLS playoffs, Sunday will be the day to decide which two teams will contest the championship in a week’s time.

Both in the Eastern Association and in the Western Association, we will be entitled to interesting appointments.

In the East, we will be entitled to a resumption of the 2021 semi-final between the Philadelphia Union and New York City FC.

In the West, we will see Los Angeles FC who will host Austin FC, a team that took everyone by surprise with its pugnacity.

Different

For the Eastern final, as we mentioned, it’s a rerun of what we saw a year ago. New York had defeated the Union by a score of 1 to 0 to go on to win the first MLS Cup in its history.


We see the New York team celebrate their title.

Photo archives, AFP

We see the New York team celebrate their title.

However, things may be different this time around. Indeed, Philadelphia had appeared in front of New York with a team decimated by an outbreak of COVID-19.

This year, everyone is healthy and Jim Curtin’s men seem to be at the top of their game.

The Cityzens are not to be outdone: they were convincing in their first two playoff games, including last week’s win against CF Montreal at Stade Saputo.

Disappointments

The fact remains that Philadelphia, who plays this meeting at home, finally sees the door open after many disappointments in the playoffs over the years.

The Union has the best offense in the league with 72 goals scored and the best defense in MLS with only 26 goals against in 34 games this season.

Philadelphia has coach of the year in Jim Curtin and top goaltender of the year in Andre Blake, who has 15 shutouts this season.

The New Yorkers may have a good attack and a correct defense, they will have their hands full against a Union who has everything to go all the way.

beautiful duel

Later tonight, Los Angeles FC will host Austin FC. It’s going to be a bit of a Hollywood showdown, because on the Angelinos side, there’s Will Ferrell among the shareholders and Matthew McConaughey in the ownership group.

It’s also a matchup between two teams that didn’t make the playoffs in 2021. In Austin’s case, that’s no surprise, since the club was in its first season. For Los Angeles, it was a disappointment, and the time for redemption has come.

On the one hand, we have Austin who is betting above all on a collective concept with the added bonus of the contribution of the excellent Sebastian Driussi, who came second in the race for the Golden Shoe with 22 goals, one less than Hany Mukhtar .

On the other, we have a team that is full of talent with Carlos Vela in the lead, as well as Gareth Bale, who has still played very little, and Giorgio Chiellini in defense. And let’s not forget Quebec goalkeeper Maxime Crépeau.

Similar

Statistically, Los Angeles and Austin are similar. LAFC finished first in the West with 67 points, compared to 56 for the Texans who finished second.

LA scored 66 goals to Austin’s 65. The difference is defensively. Los Angeles allowed just 38 goals, while Austin gave up 49 goals.

With a formidable attack like that of black and gold, there is reason to expect a rather open and above all exciting match.

And let’s not hide our pleasure, there is a certain Felipe who is lining up for Austin and who is very good at hosting a match.



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