Philadelphia, D.C. United battle to scoreless draw

ByReuters ESPN logo
Thursday, May 18, 2023

Andre Blake made three saves to help the Philadelphia Union preserve a 0-0 draw against visiting D.C. United on Saturday night.

The reigning and three-time MLS goalkeeper of the year was particularly impressive before halftime when a D.C. squad hampered by injuries created the majority of the chances.

His efforts helped the Union (5-4-3, 18 points) extend their unbeaten run in league play to five matches despite seeing a three-match win streak halted.

Tyler Miller made two saves for D.C. (4-5-4, 16 points), which will probably be the more satisfied team given how its meetings with Philadelphia went in 2022.

The Black-and-Red were outscored 13-0 by the 2022 Eastern Conference champions across two games en route to finishing with a league-worst 27 points.

Manager Wayne Rooney's D.C. squad has also lost only once in its last six games after earning its sixth-ever point at Philadelphia and its first since a 1-0 win in May 2014.

But despite eight names in total on the injury report, D.C. looked the more likely to score before halftime.

Mateusz Klich forced Blake into a diving stop to his left in the seventh minute. And in the 35th, Blake denied Ted Ku-DiPietro's effort from close range after Christian Benteke's cross was deflected into the forward's path.

The game seemed to turn when Philadelphia manager Jim Curtin inserted midfielder Jose Martinez and striker Michael Uhre with a bit more than a half-hour to play.

Both were returning from their own short-term ailments, and soon after Julian Carranza's effort from long-range forced D.C. goalkeeper Tyler Miller into a sprawling 62nd-minute save.

But the visitors also kept pressing, and Benteke came inches from his sixth goal of the year in the 69th minute when his header struck the crossbar.

Philadelphia's Andres Perea had one last look from a promising position in second-half stoppage time but sent his effort wide of the goal.