Home > General Soccer > What to Take Away From the Win vs. RBNY

What to Take Away From the Win vs. RBNY

Union’s win against the Energy Drinks showed the final home crowd of the season that the team has come a long way since March.  They struck quickly against an uninspired opponent, and played an attractive, high-pressure style of football that will be more consistent and prevalent next season.  The only viewpoint that could diminish the win is that RBNY didn’t seem to care about the result of the match.  They didn’t start really playing until they had conceded 2 goals, had halftime to think about it, and made a good tactical substitution.  They experimented with a 4-5-1 formation and found out that Juan Pablo Angel can’t play as a lone striker.  They can still clinch the Eastern Conference championship with a win this week, so their match against Union was one where they could afford to try stuff out and a loss wasn’t critical.

However, this is a Union blog, and I shall focus on the positives.  The most encouraging part of Saturday afternoon did not happen on the pitch; it happened in the stands.  All accounts report that the supporters’ sections for Energy Drinks and Union brought out the best in each other.  They attacked each other verbally, not physically, which is the way it should be.  They were loud, creative, and effective.  Fan sections like those create an atmosphere unique in professional sports.  There is no other sport where fans sing in unison during game play.  The best part about this is that the songs are insults to the opposition half the time.  The other half are pro-home team, but the insulting ones are better.  Next season’s match vs. RBNY will be worth going to just to hear the back-and-forth between the supporters.

About the match, the 2 early goals showed the killer instinct that we knew the team had all along.  Union’s issue during this season has been figuring each other out, reading runs, and understanding where to be to capitalize on the chances.  Fred was a beneficiary of being in the right place at the right time when he scored his goal.  Being in the penalty area, right in front of the goal, on a corner kick is usually a good place to troll for rebounds and second chances.  Fred did well to make sure that ball found the net.  The second goal was even more encouraging because it was a central defender getting on the end of Sebastien Le Toux’s cross.  Michael Orozco Fiscal made a great run, and scored what would become the game-winner.  MOF’s run is something that neither Danny Califf nor any of the other players who have manned the center back position would have made.  It was the product of his instinct, and understanding what Seba was going to do with the play.  It’s indicative of what will help this team succeed next season and beyond.

All in all for next season, I expect them to improve on their 8 wins (potentially 9 with Columbus left to play) and I certainly expect them to improve on the 14 losses.  I’m interested to see how the November 24th Expansion Draft will effect Union.  They could lose 2 players that day, so there may be moves required by the front office other than what they already envision doing before next spring.

-Nick, the other .5 of Unholy Union

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