Inter Miami-Union Preview
It took a while, but the Philadelphia Union finally earned a victory on this topsy-turvy 2020 season. Meanwhile, Inter Miami are still looking for its first MLS triumph.
In a Group A match of the MLS is Back Tournament, the Union and Miami meet for the first time on Tuesday night near Orlando, Fla.
Philadelphia (1-1-1) held some lofty expectations heading into the 2020 season, and still believes greatness is on the horizon. However, the Union opened with a rather stunning 2-0 loss at FC Dallas, then settled for a point in their wild 3-3 draw at Los Angeles FC before the league was shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The Union, though, finally earned that elusive 2020 victory upon the restart of the season, 1-0 over New York City FC on Thursday. Alejandro Bedoya's 63rd-minute goal was all Philadelphia needed to prevail, thus positioning itself well within the group.
"I'm very proud of my players throughout the last four months," manager Jim Curtin told MLS' official website. "I'm proud of everything they did on and off the field. ... Great way to start the competition. We recognize it's only one game, but now we can build momentum into our final two group-stage games."
Curtain should be pleased with the defensive improvement his side showed after conceding those five goals through the first two matches. There's a possibility that the Union could again make things tough on their next opponent as expansion Miami (0-3-0) has managed two goals over its first three contests.
The most recent came via Juan Agudelo in the 47th minute on Wednesday against Orlando City in the first match of the tournament at ESPN's Wide World of Sports Complex. However, Miami yielded the equalizer in the 70th minute and was stunned in the seventh minute of stoppage time by Nani's goal that sent it to a 2-1 defeat.
"For us to climb out of this we have to do it together, one game at a time, one training session at a time," veteran keeper Luis Robles told Miami's official website. "The only way that we're going to be able to do it is sticking together, believing in what we're building here and maintaining great spirit because we have an incredible locker room.
"The chemistry in the locker room is phenomenal. I believe it's on that foundation that we can change this, that we can start getting points, that we can start getting wins. It's the fortitude that comes from within the locker room that's going to be able to change the tide."
In addition to Agudelo's goal, Rodolfo Pizarro has scored for Miami. Meanwhile, four different players have scored for Philadelphia.
Updated July 12, 2020