By IVES GALARCEP
The Philadelphia Union watched another late lead disappear, and when Aaron Wheeler clumsily stuck a leg out and fouled Juan Luis Anangono in the penalty area to give the Chicago a last-second penalty kick, it looked as though the Union were set for another nightmare ending.
Zac MacMath saw to it that the Union dropped just two points, and not all three.
The Union goalkeeper dove to his right and stopped Mike Magee’s well-placed penalty kick with an outstretched hand, then blocked Magee’s follow-up rebound shot to help the Union hold on to a 2-2 tie at Toyota Park on Saturday.
MacMath denied Magee’s chance of scoring his second goal of the day after opening the match with a 16th-minute finish.
The Union took control of the match mid-way through the first half, with Maurice Edu equalizing in the 32nd minute and Leo Fernandes scoring a surprising goal after floating a long free kick from the wing past Fire goalkeeper Sean Johnson just seven minutes later.
The Fire pressed for an equalizer and became the latest team to score a late goal against the Union when Anangono headed a Mike Magee free kick past MacMath in the 86th minute.
The goal marked the third time in five matches this season where the Union squandered a lead in the 80th minute or later.
The Union looked destined to lose after Wheeler was whistled for raising his leg and fouling Anangono in the fifth minute of second-half stoppage time, but MacMath stepped up to make the vital saves to preserve the point for Philadelphia.
Check out video highlights of the match below:
Woah, woah. Looks like all the comments on here are critical of the Union. As a Fire fan, I have to point out to all of you, that my team is at least as mediocre as your team, if not more. I would definitely be willing to put down money against you that when the chips are down, the Fire is more capable of self-destructing. We’ll just have to see how the season plays out – whichever team clinches missing the playoffs first wins!
Here’s to hoping history repeats itself with forwards getting traded…
Nowak trades Mwanga = Nowak firing
Hack trades JM9 = Hack firing????
It looks like conditioning is an issue with the union.
Everyone on the backline looked winded at about the 80th minute.
How many times have the Union squandered a late lead since last year? It’s almost the expectation now. At some point the manager needs to be held responsible for these kinds of performances.
Hackworth taking responsibility? That’s laughable.
He takes his cue from his boss, Nicky Sak, and typically offers excuses to the press. It’s the Hack-N-Sak show norm.
**** the Union. They have gotten progressively worse throughout the season. Hackworths got to go, but the owners will never do it.