Philadelphia Union Dominates New York Red Bulls in Leagues Cup
Philadelphia Union Triumphs Over New York Red Bulls in Leagues Cup Clash. Curtin Calls for Humility Amid Dominance
In a recent Leagues Cup showdown on Tuesday night at Subaru Park, the Philadelphia Union emerged victorious once again, securing a win through penalty kicks following a 1-1 draw against the New York Red Bulls. The Round-of-16 result left Philadelphia's head coach, Jim Curtin, content with the outcome, yet also ready to address a pertinent issue. While acknowledging the positive impact of Troy Lesesne as head coach for the Red Bulls after taking over midseason from Gerhard Struber, Curtin expressed his dissatisfaction with the overall approach of RBNY.
Although Curtin praised Lesesne's coaching efforts, he candidly stated, "I think Troy is a great young coach and he’s doing an incredible job with his team, I really do. And I think he deserves to be the head coach of that team. But I will say – this has nothing to do with Troy – for a team and a group to be in 21st place [in the league], to talk and run their mouths as much as they do on the field, to be beat here 11 times in a row by us, is something where, yeah, I'm giving bulletin-board material. But I've kind of had enough of it."
A History of Domination by Philadelphia
Setting the record straight, Philadelphia Union remains unbeaten in 11 encounters against the Red Bulls (8 wins, 0 losses, 3 draws), their last defeat dating back to a September 2019 match at Red Bull Arena. This impressive streak includes victories in both Audi MLS Cup Playoffs matches against their Eastern Conference rivals.
Curtin emphasized that while he respects the Red Bulls, he also urged for humility, stating, "I still respect them a ton, despite my first line there. But all I'm talking [about] there is be a little humble. When you're the little brother and you get beat up a lot, just know how to act."
He further elaborated, "For any young kid and any young player, I think you should have the self-awareness to know when to speak and when to be humble."
Characterized by physicality, duels, and set pieces, Philadelphia versus New York matches often feature intense tactics and press-heavy strategies. The passing-completion percentage hovered around 65% during the recent match, culminating in Philadelphia's 4-3 penalty shootout victory.
Looking Forward to a Rematch and Beyond
With a series of wins under their belt, Curtin emphasized the challenges faced by his team on and off the field. As the Union advance to the quarterfinals, they will face Querétaro FC, a Liga MX side they previously defeated 5-1 during the group stage. Despite this past success, Curtin anticipates a tough competition against a team that eliminated the New England Revolution via penalty kicks in their Round-of-16 match.
He acknowledged Querétaro's surprising resilience, noting, "They're kind of the surprise of the competition, I would say because they have, from what I've heard and read and seen, have had a lot of adversity in terms of player payments and different things going on."
Curtin concluded by expressing the potential of facing Lionel Messi and Inter Miami CF in a semifinal match on August 15, if both the Union and Inter Miami win their respective quarterfinal games. He stated, "If things align right, I think you guys know what the next game would look like. So they could be good too if everybody does their part."