The Full 90

Philadelphia Union to scout Sporting KC ahead of U.S. Open Cup Final

Philadelphia Union head coach Jim Curtin celebrated with fans after his team’s 1-0 win against the Chicago Fire in the U.S. Open Cup on Aug. 12 in Chester, Pa. Curtin is sending scouts to Kansas City to assess the Union’s opponent in the cup final, Sporting Kansas City.
Philadelphia Union head coach Jim Curtin celebrated with fans after his team’s 1-0 win against the Chicago Fire in the U.S. Open Cup on Aug. 12 in Chester, Pa. Curtin is sending scouts to Kansas City to assess the Union’s opponent in the cup final, Sporting Kansas City. Philadelphia Daily News

The Philadelphia Union are going all in on the U.S. Open Cup Final.

This past weekend, midfielder Brian Carroll said each game is preparation for the Sept. 30 clash. Now the team is set to deploy a new tactic.

If these are the same scouts who brought goalkeeper Raïs M'Bolhi to Philadelphia — you know, the guy who was exiled midseason then brought back to train alone before finally transferring to a Turkish club — then Sporting Kansas City should prepare its championship wall for a new prize.

All jokes aside, this is rather odd. Not only have the Union played Sporting KC once already this season, Kansas City is among one of the most predictable clubs in the league. Manager Peter Vermes has stuck to his 4-3-3 formation since taking over in 2009, and while this season the team has pressed opponents further back on the field, it’s still the same concept; same cycle: Push the tempo, lose possession, high press, regain possession, repeat.

Then again, this proves the Union are clinging desperately to the hope of grabbing one piece of hardware amid a disappointing year to this point.

Extra time: Matt Besler is still really, really good

In an effort to hone in on The Full 90’s GIF creating, I wanted to share the most impressive play from Sporting KC last week that most of you probably don’t realized happened.

1. First off, Besler forces Octavio Rivero to the outside.

2. He then cuts off not one but TWO passing opportunities, stepping backward while maintaining attention on Rivero.

3. Finally, Besler makes an impressive tackle inside the box to squash the counter.

Summary: Matt Besler is still really, really good.

  Comments