By Matt Leon
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The Philadelphia Union lost to Chicago over the weekend, but they played without several key players for various reasons. Those absences opened the doors for other players to get an opportunity to step in and that included rookie defender Ray Gaddis.
Gaddis played in an MLS game for the first time since June 23rd for the Union, starting and playing 61 minutes in the loss to the Fire.
“I think you have to have the right mentality to come out when your number is called,” Gaddis told KYW Newsradio after the game. “You have to be ready. I thought I played well in the first half. You just have to be ready at all times.”
Listen to Matt Leon’s interview with Ray Gaddis:
Gaddis was a second round pick of the Union in this year’s MLS SuperDraft out of West Virginia University and he spent time with the Union PDL affiliate Reading United in 2010 and 2011. He talks about competing at the pro level.
“Biggest adjustment probably has to be just staying focused through and through. Forwards at the next level are a lot more clinical, and they will finish the chances when they get them. So you have to be even more aggressive and keep your head on a swivel as a defender.”
And Gaddis is having fun playing in Philadelphia.
“I didn’t know a lot about the city, but it is a very vibrant city. It’s very nice. I’m enjoying it so far.”
Gaddis and the Union visit D.C. United on Sunday.
You can follow Matt on Twitter @mattleonkyw.