Step on Russell unintentional, says Union's Fabian after red card vs. SKC

Marco Fabian had a rough outing in his second MLS match, seeing his penalty kick saved by Tim Melia before earning a straight red card for landing his studs on Johnny Russell in the Philadelphia Union’s 2-0 loss at Sporting Kansas City on Sunday.

The Mexican international said afterwards that his contact with Russell was inadvertent, as he found himself with nowhere else to place his foot as he landed after the Scottish winger slid in heavily at his feet on the edge of the Union penalty box in the 60th minute at Children’s Mercy Park.

“I don’t know, I can’t explain. But I don’t want to hit this player, I just jump and I landed [on] him because I don’t have a place to land,” said Fabian, speaking to reporters in both English and Spanish. “Sometimes the decision is from the referee, I want to respect this decision.”

The Philly Designated Player seemed to allude to the possibility of an appeal of the ejection, adding “I’ll just wait and see what happens in the week.” Now 0-2 in Fabian’s first two matches, the Union visit defending champions Atlanta United on Sunday (7:15 pm ET | MLS LIVE on ESPN+ in US and DAZN in Canada), a game in which he’s as of now slated to be suspended.

“No one likes getting both a penalty [saved] and a red card,” said Fabian in Spanish. “I'm leaving with a bad taste in my mouth, but with an open mind and my head held high that I'll get better.”