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A Philadelphia Union blog hosted by Christopher A. Vito and Matthew De George

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Union-Sounders Pre-Game: Lineups and Analysis

Philadelphia Union (4-4-2)
Gaddis- Parke-Okugo-Williams
Bench: Konopka, Le Toux, Kleberson, Hoppenot, Lahoud, G.Farfan, Wheeler

Seattle Sounders (4-4-2)
Bench: Hahnemann, Scott, Martinez, Ianni, Estrada, Rose, Zavaleta

- Union manager John Hackworth said this week that the time for changes was close; he also said it wouldn’t be this week. He was right on the money, naming an unchanged squad from last week’s loss at New England.

- The big name missing from the starting XI or the bench for Seattle is Obafemi Martins, who scored last week in the win against Colorado. Instead, it’ll be Lamar Neagle pairing Eddie Johnson up front, which could be even more dangerous given their familiarity. (Martins has played just three games since coming over as a DP pick up from Levante in Spain.) Also missing are Shalrie Joseph, Steve Zakuani and Osvaldo Alonso. Those are big missing pieces.

- You may notice three strikers on the Union bench: Sebastien Le Toux, Antoine Hoppenot and Aaron Wheeler, the latter getting his first bench appearance of the year. No defenders again.

- The battle in this game will be in the engine room of the midfield. Mauro Rosales is one of the best playmakers from that deep-lying role in MLS and will test the central tandem of Brian Carroll and Keon Daniel. But without Joseph or Alonso, this is an opportunity for the Union to get an upper hand (making the exclusion of Kleberson even more perplexing).

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