Jack McInerney says Philadelphia Union chemistry will take a while "if we keep switching" the lineups
CHESTER, Pa. – For the first time this season, the Philadelphia Union started their three top strikers together in the same game.
“I don’t think we played our best today,” McInerney said. “I definitely think we could have played better. That’s something we need to work on. If all three of us are going to be on the field at the same time, it’s a really attacking lineup … but it’s going to take time if we keep switching it up every week.”
While Casey and McInerney linked up for the game’s only goal and combined to register 11 total shots (six shots on net), Le Toux was relatively quiet in more of an outside midfield role.
And if Union manager John Hackworth decides to keep a 4-4-2 and go with a more traditional midfield, Le Toux could end up being the odd man out.
McInerney has started the last five games and scored in four of them, while Casey has come on strong since dealing with an early-season hamstring injury, playing arguably his best game in a Union uniform Saturday vs. Toronto.
Le Toux, meanwhile, has played 61, 28 and 73 minutes in the Union’s last three games – a stark departure from his previous stint in Philly from 2010-2011 when the Frenchman always played a full 90 minutes
How has the franchise’s all-time leading scorer dealt with that role change?
“It’s a coach’s decision,” Le Toux said. “I play on this team and I’ve got to give my best wherever I’m asked to play.”
Like McInerney, Le Toux admitted the team's attack didn’t play very well in Saturday’s game and will look to improve in that department for this Sunday’s nationally televised clash vs. D.C. United at RFK Stadium (5 pm ET, ESPN2).
Casey agreed, even though the Colorado Rapids’ all-time leading scorer was a huge presence in the box against Toronto.
“For the first time, it was kind of rough,” Casey said. “We didn’t do a very good job. But we’re starting to build those relationships, which is good. [McInerney and Le Toux have] played together before and now I’m starting to build some relationships with those guys. It’s coming along.”
Dave Zeitlin covers the Union for MLSsoccer.com. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.