Reporting Matt Leon
By Matt Leon
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The Philadelphia Union will not be returning to the MLS playoffs after making the first postseason appearance in franchise history in 2011. But they are playing well down the stretch as they’ve won three of their last four matches.
Midfielder Michael Farfan tells KYW Newsradio that it’s not hard to break down why they’ve been playing better as of late.
“I think it is just scoring goals and finally getting the ball in the back of the net. I think we’ve possessed the ball pretty well, but the goals just haven’t come. Finally, they are starting to come for us.”
The 24-year-old Farfan has started 28 of the 29 games he has played for the Union this season. He has emerged as very important cog for the Union as he leads the team with five assists and 53 shots on goal. He scored his only goal of the campaign on the fourth of July in a 2-1 win in Los Angeles.
“I think I’ve had time to grow throughout the season and kind of find my feel for my position,” Farfan says. “I think last year was kind of just trying to get on the field wherever I could and this year I was more in an exact role where I knew what I was going to be doing and I knew what position I was going to be playing. So I think it was just a matter of experience and playing game-in and game-out and learning more about the position and about the league.”
Houston knocked the Union out of last year’s playoffs and the Dynamo are fighting to return to the postseason here in 2012 as they currently sit fifth in MLS Eastern Conference with 50 points. Farfan says they present quite a challenge.
“I think they are very good in the air. We’ve got to watch out for free kicks and any set pieces. It’s a very small field, so I think a lot of times they’re going to have those chances around the box and we have to just do well to defend those set pieces.”
Philadelphia is 10-15-6 heading into Saturday.
First kick is set for 7:30pm.
You can follow Matt on twitter @mattleonkyw.