Embed from Getty Images


Loons Earn Failing Grade in Loss to Philadelphia

by on 7 October 2018

Minnesota walked into this game needing a few results to go their way to keep its playoff hopes alive. Those hopes would not last long, as Philadelphia scored four in the first half. A goal from Corey Burke, a brace from Fafa Picault, and a goalazo from Ilsinho doomed the Loons. Darwin Quintero managed to get a consolation goal in the second half, but it was too, little too late.

Starting lineup

After serving their one-game suspensions, Fernando Bob and Maximiano returned to the starting line up in midfield. Behind the double sixes, Jérôme Thiesson made his second straight start since returning from injury, alongside Michael Boxall, Brent Kallman, and Francisco Calvo. In front of the double sixes was the attacking four of Rasmus Schüller, Miguel Ibarra, Darwin Quintero, and Ángelo Rodríguez. The ever-present Bobby Shuttleworth started in net for the Loons.

First half

Stop me if you have heard this before, Minnesota conceded early. In the seventh minute, a long ball was played forward to Corey Burke. The red-hot striker beat Boxall to the ball as the New Zealand international slipped on the turf. Kallman tried to close Burke down, but the forward’s strike found the back of the net. “Doop” blared through the speakers.

The frustrating thing is that the Loons were playing well early. Schüller had a shot blocked in the box and both Quintero and Rodríguez had half chances. A couple minutes before the Union’s opening goal CJ Sapong had a near miss while wide open in the box. After the chance from Sapong, Minnesota started playing sloppier, which eventually lead to the goal.

Alejandro Bedoya would double the lead ten minutes later. Kallman was goalside of Bedoya on a low cross, but did not push up with the American winger. A promising first five minutes from the Loons quickly turned into a 2-0 deficit.

Five minutes later, Murphy’s law decided it was not leaving Minnesota’s side. Fafa Picault, fresh off his recent call-up to the USMNT, beat Thiesson to a through ball in the box. The resulting shot was partially deflected by Shuttleworth but the ball found the back of the net.

Picault would double his tally near the end of the first half with a curling effort from the edge of the box. In the run up to the goal, Calvo slipped on the pitch, one of many  Minnesota players to loose their footing in the first half.

Referee Allen Chapman decided that there would be no stoppage time, for the time being ending the misery for the Loons. It feels weird to say this, but Minnesota was lucky to not head into the break down by even more. If not for some poor finishing by the Union, Minnesota could have been down by a touchdown.

Second half

One change was made at halftime with Alexi Gómez coming on for Thiesson. This also marked a formation change to a 3-5-2.

In the 53rd minute, Quintero capped off a give-and-go with Rodríguez with a goal. Blake got a hand to it but the ball trickled into the net. Rodríguez raced to grab the ball and bring it back to the center circle. Minnesota at least had a goal in their pocket.

Philadelphia had two golden chances to extend their lead, both off mistakes from the Loons. A poor back pass by Kallman saw Burke in on goal with only Shuttleworth to beat, but the United goalkeeper got a leg to prevent the goal. Moments later Shuttleworth sent a goal kick straight to Picault, who saw his effort to complete his hat trick saved spectacularly.

Ilsinho would pile on the misery with ten minutes left in the game scoring on a long-range effort that will probably be up for MLS goal of the week. The Brazilian easily beat Harrison Heath on the dribble. With no second defender stepping up he decided to try his luck from 25 yards out. His shot found the bottom corner around a diving Shuttleworth.

Once again, Allen Chapman decided to end the Loons’ misery by with not adding any stoppage time. With the loss, Minnesota’s slim playoff chances were truly dashed.

Scoring summary

8′ PHI – GOAL – Corey Burke (Assisted by Borek Dockal)

17′ PHI -GOAL – Alejandro Bedoya (Assisted by Keegan Rosenberry)

23′ PHI – GOAL – Fabrice-Jean Picault (Assisted by Keegan Rosenberry)

44′ PHI – GOAL – Fabrice-Jean Picault (Assisted by C.J. Sapong)

54′ MIN – GOAL -  Darwin Quintero (Assisted by Angelo Rodriguez)

56′ PHI – YC – Alejandro Bedoya (Unsporting Behavior)

72′ PHI – YC – Fabrice-Jean Picault (Unsporting Behavior)

72′ MIN – YC – Alexi Gomez (Unsporting Behavior)

75′ MIN – YC – Fernando Bob (Unsporting Behavior)

79′ PHI – GOAL – Ilsinho (Assisted by Fabrice-Jean Picault)

FiftyFive.One is now on Patreon. Do you like the independent coverage of soccer news from Minnesota and beyond that FiftyFive.One offers? Please consider becoming a patron.

Tags: , ,