PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Philadelphia Union return to MLS action on Saturday night as they visit the Montreal Impact.
The Union lost a tough one on Wednesday night in the quarterfinals of the US Open Cup, falling in penalty kicks (4-2) to the New England Revolution.
Now in previous years, the end of an Open Cup run was especially disappointing because for the most part the Union were buried in the MLS standings.
That is not the case this year.
Philadelphia has 30 points (8-6-6 record) heading into Saturday night’s match and that is good for second place in MLS Eastern Conference. Midfielder Brian Carroll talks about what has clicked for the group here in 2016.
“Just an emphasis on keeping good possession, being fit and having a lot of competition at every position on the field has translated to a good chemistry of the group and a good, strong mentality for everybody,” Carroll tells KYW Newsradio. “That’s carried over into some of the results this year. It’s given us the confidence to believe in one another and know that no matter what the situation is in the game, that we can demand more of ourselves and find a way to get a good result out of the match.”
Listen to the entire interview with the Union’s Brian Carroll:
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Philadelphia and Montreal have met once before this season already. Back on May 14th, also in Montreal, the two teams played to a 1-1 draw. C.J. Sapong had the goal for the Union.
The Impact currently sit fourth in the East with 26 points (6-5-8 record). Carroll talks about what he expects this time around.
“They are coming off a home performance that they would like to forget (3-1 loss to NYCFC on July 17th) so we know that we’re going to get their best punch,” Carroll says. “They have some strong individuals that are capable of pulling off the incredible. We’re going to have to come with a strong team mentality and really focus on our game, try and keep possession and be opportunistic with our chances and have a high work rate in every line of our group to put on a good performance and hopefully come out with a win.”
The excitement about this Union team has really grown as the season has worn on. Carroll talks about what it will take to stay sharp in the season’s final months.
“It’s going top take input from everybody,” Carroll says. “Whether you’ve played a bunch of minutes or you haven’t played a bunch of minutes, know that you need to keep putting in the work and when your name is called, be able to help the group in any way possible. Because it’s a long year and we have a lot of minutes ahead of us. It’s a hot stretch of the season right now, so just being mentally and physically fit and strong, hopefully that’s able to allow us to push the pace and continue to push in a way that gets us the best results the rest of the season.”MORE NEWS: Philadelphia Community Still Wants 'Real Justice' For Walter Wallace Jr. A Year After Fatal Police Shooting
Philadelphia and Montreal get underway at 7:30pm on Saturday.