The Philadelphia Union have moved one step closer to avenging last year's MLS Cup defeat, becoming the latest Eastern Conference club to book their Audi 2023 MLS Cup Playoffs spot.
Head coach Jim Curtin's group, after a 2-2 draw at Charlotte FC in Matchday 33, now awaits a sixth straight postseason. They're hoping to secure a top-four spot, which would ensure home-field advantage in Round One. Seeds get locked in after Decision Day on Oct. 21.
Big picture, the Union are seeking their third straight Eastern Conference Final appearance after meeting New York City FC in the past two editions.
Just like last year, Philadelphia's top scorers are their three Designated Players: strikers Julián Carranza and Mikael Uhre, as well as midfielder Dániel Gazdag. The trio have combined for 33 goals and 18 assists.
That roster consistency continues with goalkeeper Andre Blake, left back Kai Wagner, center backs Jack Elliott and Jakob Glesnes, and defensive midfielder José Martínez. This year, both Glesnes and Martínez were MLS All-Stars.
Squad familiarity, infused with high-pressing DNA and Curtin's leadership, leaves Philadelphia firmly in the East's elite.
Audi 2023 MLS Cup Playoffs
MLS Cup presented by Audi is set for Dec. 9, while the playoffs begin Oct. 25-26 with Wild Card matches. All games can be watched on MLS Season Pass on Apple TV.
- Seeds 1-7 in each conference qualify for the Round One Best-of-3 series.
- Seeds 8-9 in each conference qualify for the Wild Card matches.