By Matt Leon
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Philadelphia Union will return home on Saturday as they welcome D.C. United to Chester.
These are rough times for 1-4-5 Philadelphia. The Union last tasted victory on March 15th, and in their last three matches they have scored just one goal combined – going 0-2-1 in the process. Last Saturday, Philadelphia lost in Seattle, 2-1.
Forward Antoine Hoppenot says it is frustrating.
“I think everyone sees that we actually go out there and we do a really good job of keeping the ball and putting teams under pressure,” Hoppenot tells KYW Newsradio. “But we haven’t gotten the goals that we’ve needed to get the wins and the points. So its been a pretty tough month. But I think, as a team, we’re pretty optimistic that if we keep playing the way that we are, we’re bound to get some goals and we’re bound to get some wins.”
Listen to full podcast…
D.C. United finished last season with, by far, the fewest points in MLS, just 16. Here in 2014 they already have 11 (3-3-2 record), so they are much improved.
“They’re a good team,” Hoppenot says. “Obviously, they are a very experienced team, they’ve got a lot of players who have been in MLS for quite awhile. So they know how to play, they know the grind of the season and they’ve been here before.”
This match kicks off a grueling week for the Union. After D.C. United on Saturday, Philadelphia travels to play a Sporting Kansas City team that is tied for first in the Eastern Conference on Wednesday. Then next Saturday, Philadelphia is back home to host a New England team that is also tied for first in the East.
“It’s not easy,” Hoppenot says of playing three matches in eight days. “Especially when that midweek game is an away game. That travel day is kind of a killer. It’s really tough to find your legs. But hopefully our entire team is ready to go. We’re professionals, so we know what we need to do to take care of our bodies and be prepared for that second game and then that third game.”
Philadelphia and D.C. will get underway at 4:00 p.m. on Saturday.
You can follow Matt on Twitter @mattleonkyw.