By Matt Leon
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – It’s safe to say that this is not the start to the season the Philadelphia Union had in mind.
Three games into the 2012 MLS season and Philadelphia sits 0-3. They are one of only two teams not to earn a point yet (Toronto FC is 0-2).
The Union will try to get back on track Saturday when they welcome former teammate Sébastien Le Toux and the Vancouver Whitecaps to Chester.
This start to the season is especially frustrating seeing as how it comes on the heels of the franchise’s first playoff appearance last season. Goalie Zac MacMath gives some insight into why he thinks they’ve struggled out of the gate.
“I think we’ve got a lot of new guys who haven’t played in the league yet. I think our league’s a little bit different in the physicality and what it takes to win in this league. So I think the past three games we’ve learned a lot about the team and as individuals and I think we’re finally starting to realize how to play with each other and getting use to each other and I think we’ll show that on Saturday against Vancouver.”
The Whitecaps are 2-0-1 this season and they have yet to allow a goal here in 2012. That doesn’t bode well for a Union squad that has found the back of the net just twice in three matches. Of course the main storyline in this game will be the return of Le Toux, who was traded from Philadelphia in the offseason, but MacMath says they can’t focus all their energies on him.
“They’ve got a bunch of other creative players that are pretty active around the box.”
While this is the first time MacMath has started an MLS season as the #1 goaltender, he did get valuable experience last year as the starter when he filled in for the injured Faryd Mondragon and he says that was huge.
“I took a lot away from those seven or eight games last year and definitely brought into this season. For confidence and just getting use to playing in the league, I’m very grateful that I got that opportunity last year.”
Philadelphia and Vancouver set for a 4:00 first kick on Saturday.
Listen to KYW’s Matt Leon’s interview with Zac MacMath: