September 19, 2012
A look at the upcoming game
DC United (13-10-5, 44 pts) @ Philadelphia Union (7-13-6, 27 pts), 7:00 pm CT (ESPN2)
DC United fell from fifth to sixth in the MLS East on Wednesday night, when the Columbus Crew beat Chivas USA, and will be looking to make up that lost ground against the struggling Philadelphia Union Thursday at PPL Park. Chris Pontius, who scored the only goal when United beat the Union 1-0 on June 16, has become the focal point of the DC attack since Dwayne De Rosario went down with a knee injury, and responded with a goal and an assist from the midfield in last Saturday’s 2-1 win over New England. United coach Ben Olsen has paired DC newcomer Lionard Pajoy – who will be making his first visit back to PPL Park since being traded from Philadelphia for Danny Cruz—with newly-healthy Brazilian Maicon Santos up front, and while the two are still finding their rhythm, they could turn into a dangerous attacking tandem down the stretch for DC. The Union are mired in a seven-game winless streak after last weekend’s come-from-behind 1-1 draw with lowly Toronto FC. Sheanon Williams’ 85th-minute equalizer was Philadelphia’s only shot on goal of the lackluster match. On Thursday, the Union will be without central midfielder Michael Farfan, their leader in assists (4), shots (46) and shots on goal (13), due to yellow card accumulation, which might give a more prominent role to either Freddy Adu or little-used Colombian Roger Torres.