Chester, Pa. – The Philadelphia Union have advanced to the fourth round of the 2013 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup after defeating the Ocean City Nor’easters, 2-1 Tuesday night at PPL Park behind a stoppage time goal from Brian Carroll. The club will now face D.C. United at the Maryland SoccerPlex June 12 in a 7 p.m. matchup.
Carroll’s goal arrived just minutes after Nor’easters forward Emmanuel Kollie evened the match at 1-1, finishing off a scramble in the box and squeezing the ball inside near post. The goal nullified a score in the 49th minute from Jack McInerney, who calmly placed a ball past Nor’easters goalkeeper Brian Billings off a ball across the box from Le Toux.
“I am just happy to be advancing,” Carroll said postgame. “This is a tournament I would really like to win one day and hopefully we are able to do it this year with this group.”
The Union will now face D.C. United for the third straight year in U.S. Open Cup play, who took the USL’s Richmond Kickers into extra time Tuesday, eventually winning on penalty kicks.
It was Carroll who fueled an extra time thriller against D.C. United three years ago in Boyds, when he scored in extra time. Carroll, who has five goals in all competitions for the Union has scored three in Open Cup play – two against D.C. United.
“When you play against a team like that it’s kind of like their World Cup game, so you know they are going to come out strong,” Jack McInerney said. “They are going to throw everything at you and try to do everything possible to defeat you. For us, it’s a game where we try to come out and try something different. But [Ocean City] battled and it took a while to break them down, but it finally came.”
Playing the majority of his starters, Union manager John Hackworth found a crew eager to get on the score sheet (18 shots, seven on goal), but was unable to capitalize in the first half. However, the Union attack never wavered after Kollie’s goal and a furious attack spearheaded on numerous occasions down the right flank by second half sub Danny Cruz proved too much for Ocean City to contain.
“We obviously have [winning this tournament] one of the goals we set out for this club,” said Hackworth. “You can tell that by the lineup we put out tonight that there was no thought that this was going to be an easy game for us, so our focus is trying to win one of the few trophies you can win in U.S. Soccer…[now we head to D.C.] and anyone that’s been down to [Boyds, Md.] will tell you that is a tough place to play the past couple years. It’s always a battle.”
That game is June 12, but in the immediate, the Union will take another trip North to Canada to take on Toronto FC in MLS play on Saturday (6 p.m., The Comcast Network).
“Hopefully we can learn some things from tonight’s game and move past the couple tough performances that we’ve had,” said Carroll. “Road games are never easy and Toronto is a much different club now than they were when we played them the first time, so we are going to have to bring our ‘A’ game.”
Philadelphia Union 2, Ocean City Nor’easters 1
Saturday, May 28; 7:30 p.m. ET
PPL Park, Chester, PA
PHI: McInerney 49’ (Le Toux)
OCY: Kollie 91’+
PHI: Carroll 92’+ (Le Toux)
UNION STARTING 11
MacMath, Williams, Okugo, Parke, Gaddis, Carroll, Daniel, Fernandes (Farfan 89’), Casey (Cruz 65’), Le Toux, McInerney (Hoppenot 81’)
NOR’EASTERS STARTING 11
Billings, Curran, Hillard, Machinguata, McLaws, Mulgrew (Kollie 24’), Perea, Tribbett, Asante (Dennis 68’), Lacroix, Tweneboa (Correra 86’)