Thursday, August 21, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Philadelphia Union reach playoffs for first time ever

With a win or tie, the Union will qualify for the MLS Cup Playoffs for the first time ever.

Philadelphia Union reach playoffs for first time ever

Sébastien Le Toux scored the Union´s only goal in their 1-1 draw against Toronto FC. (Michael Bryant/Staff Photographer)
Sébastien Le Toux scored the Union's only goal in their 1-1 draw against Toronto FC. (Michael Bryant/Staff Photographer)

For the first time ever, the Philadelphia Union are headed to the playoffs.

Sébastien Le Toux's 21-yard strike in the 42nd minute was enough to fuel the Union's offense in a 1-1 draw with Toronto FC at PPL Park. Ryan Johnson tied the score for Toronto in the 57th minute.

The Union only needed the one point they got today to qualify for the postseason, but they now have company atop the Eastern Conference. Sporting Kansas City drew level with the Union on 48 points today by beating the New York Red Bulls, 2-0, at Livestrong Sporting Park.

The first two tiebreakers are head-to-head results and goal difference. Philadelphia and Kansas City are tied on both of those: their two games against each other this season were draws, and both teams' goal differences are +7.

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The third tiebreaker is goals scored, and on that Kansas City has a 49-44 advantage.

The standings are here, though they might not yet be updated to reflect today's games when you read them. You can do the math yourself.

Philadelphia will play its regular-season finale at the New York Red Bulls on Thursday night. New York will be without star forward Thierry Henry, who was controversially sent off in the first half of today's game.

Sporting Kansas City's finale is next Saturday at D.C. United. The Houston Dynamo, currently in third place with 46 points, play their last regular season game next Sunday at home against the Los Angeles Galaxy.

You can read my live updates from the game below. There are also video highlights at the bottom of the post.


Starting Lineups

Toronto FC (4-3-3)

Goalkeeper: Milos Kocic
Defenders: Doneil Henry, Ty Harden, Andy Iro, Ashtone Morgan
Midfielders: Matt Stinson, Torsten Frings, Eric Avila
Forwards: Nick Soolsma, Ryan Johnson, Joao Plata

Bench: GK Stefan Frei; Ds Kyle Davies, Mikael Yourassowsky; Ms Nathan Sturgis, Gianluca Zavarise; Fs Danny Koevermans, Peri Marosevic

Philadelphia Union (4-4-2)

Goalkeeper: Faryd Mondragón
Defenders: Sheanon Williams, Carlos Valdés, Danny Califf, Gabriel Farfan
Midfielders: Brian Carroll, Michael Farfan, Justin Mapp, Freddy Adu
Forwards: Veljko Paunović, Sébastien Le Toux

Bench: GK Zac MacMath; Ms Stefani Miglioranzi, Kyle Nakazawa, Amobi Okugo, Roger Torres; Fs Jack McInerney, Danny Mwanga



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Jonathan Tannenwald Philly.com
About this blog
The Goalkeeper is your home for the latest news about the Philadelphia Union, Major League Soccer, U.S. national teams and the rest of the world's most popular sport. It's also a place for fans to gather and celebrate the culture of soccer and its unique place on the sports landscape.

Reach Jonathan at jtannenwald@phillynews.com or 215-854-2330.

Jonathan Tannenwald Philly.com
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