Philadelphia Union
Philadelphia Union's Alejandro Bedoya, center, lefts the trophy as the Union celebrate winning the MLS Eastern Conference following an MLS soccer match against NYCFC, Sunday, Oct. 30, 2022, in Chester, Pa. The Union won 3-1 and clinched the MLS Eastern Conference title. (AP Photo/Chris Szagola)

Philadelphia Union Defeat NYCFC 3-1, Advance To MLS Cup Final

One of the most fun teams in Major League Soccer is advancing to the league’s cup final.

Philadelphia Union defeated New York City FC 3-1 in last night’s Eastern Conference Final. They will face Los Angeles FC in the MLS Cup Final later this week.

After a scoreless first half, Argentinian midfielder Maxi Moralez scored the New York club’s only goal of the match in the 57th minute, sending an outside-the-box screamer into the bottom left corner of the net.

Philadelphia quickly responded, scoring a flurry of goals. Union scored 3 goals in 11 minutes to make the match 3-1.

Julián Carranza opened Union’s scoring in the 65th minute. Jakob Glesnes played a quick free kick past the New York defense, and Carranza was able to finish past NYCFC keeper Sean Johnson.

Philadelphia’s next goal came just two minutes later. Carranza was also involved in Union’s second goal, sending a header to an unmarked Dániel Gazdag in the 67th minute. Carranza is in the midst of a terrific season, having scored 15 goals and assisting 7 in 33 MLS matches.

Substitute Cory Burke was able to put the final nail in NYCFC’s coffin after stripping the ball from New York defender Justin Haak. Burke dribbled around several New York defenders before losing the ball on a bad pass inside the box. As if by fate, the ball bounced back to Burke, which he rocketed into the top left corner.

This win marked Union’s first appearance in the MLS Cup Final. This was a long-awaited breakthrough for the Philadelphia squad after winning the 2020 Supporters’ Shield under head coach Jim Curtain. Philadelphia came close to appearing in last year’s MLS final, but a COVID-19-decimated squad was unable to beat a healthy NYCFC team. Union’s luck was not so poor in this year’s rematch.

Philadelphia Union will now travel to California to play Los Angeles FC in the MLS Cup Final. This will be the first time two No. 1 seeds have faced each other in the final since 2003.

About Connor O'Bryan

Connor O'Bryan is a world soccer reporter for ESPN Gainesville. He also sometimes covers baseball and other sports. He has previously written for WUFT Gainesville and for Atrium Magazine. Connor also cohosts the "Off The Bar Podcast", a student driven podcast that focuses on the global soccer landscape.

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