HIGHLIGHTS: Philadelphia Union vs. Toronto FC | August 04, 2021
The Union played on the front foot from the opening kickoff, and probably should have had even more goals if not for quality saves by Alex Bono to deny Kacper Przybylko and Daniel Gazdag inside the opening 23 minutes.
Jakob Glesnes opened the scoring in the 12th minute, spinning in the box as he latched onto a Gazdag corner kick and heading past Bono with his back to goal.
Gazdag then netted his first MLS goal, scoring from the penalty spot in the 33rd minute after Bono pulled down Sergio Santos in the box.
Three minutes later, Santos scored his fifth goal in five career matches against Toronto FC. The Brazilian received a pass from Jose Martinez and exploded into space with a deft first touch and then into the box with his second before a clinical finish inside the far post.
Toronto had a chance to get back into the game when Yeferson Soteldo stepped to the penalty spot after referee Ted Unkel ruled Jack Elliott took down Richie Laryea in the box. But Andre Blake dove to his right to get a hand on Soteldo’s low attempt.
The penalty decision seemed to be a wake-up call for the Union, who came out flat to start the second half, but closed out the match well in arguably their most complete performance of the season.
- THE BIG PICTURE: It’s not like the Union went into crisis mode after three matches without a win — that included consecutive 1-1 draws. But Philadelphia took care of business, and they did it early with three goals inside the opening 36 minutes as their focus shifts to a massive showdown against the Revs on Sunday. Toronto can’t afford many of these results in the second half of the season if they're to pull above the playoff line. It was their first loss since that 7-1 defeat to D.C. United that prompted a coaching change.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Should a penalty have been awarded? Did Laryea initiate the contact? There's a lot to debate about the decision, but had Soteldo buried his PK early in the second half it could have drastically changed the course of the match. Instead, Blake said no.
PK SAVE: Andre Blake, Philadelphia Union - 53rd minute
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Santos played a pivotal role in the Union’s first-half dominance. He set up Gazdag’s penalty, scored a terrific goal of his own three minutes later and showcased skills like these on every touch of the ball.
Sergio Santos skills on display vs. Toronto FC