Sports Mole previews Sunday’s Major League Soccer clash between the Philadelphia Union and Toronto, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
the Philadelphia Union need a win against Toronto Sunday at Subaru Park to officially secure first place in the Major League Soccer Eastern Conference.
Heading into Decision Day, the Union are two points clear of CF Montreal for first place but have won fewer games, while the Reds have lost four straight, one shy of their season best.
A season filled with convincing performances and numerous lopsided wins has been anything but lately in Philly.
jim curtinThe men began this month with a 4-0 loss to Charlotte FC, their biggest regular-season loss since 2019.
Philly has failed to find the back of the net in two straight MLS games after scoring a total of 23 goals in his previous five outings.
If they can pull off another shutout on Sunday, the Union would finish the regular season with the second-best goal differential in MLS history, while a win by seven or more goals would eclipse the old record set by Los Angeles FC of +48 in 2019. .
When you look at some of their results this year, that possibility doesn’t seem so far-fetched since Philly won four times in 2022 by six or more goals.
Their 64 points amassed this year is a new club record, while their 68 goals scored is the most by any Union team in a single season, and if they allow fewer than nine goals on Sunday they will set a new franchise mark for the fewest goals allowed in a 34-game campaign.
Bob Bradley He’s experienced plenty of ups and downs in his first season in charge of Toronto, and since September, there haven’t been many positives to take away.
TFC is one loss away from its longest losing streak of the year, and if they fail to score on Sunday, it would be the third straight game the Reds have been shut out, matching their longest streak of the campaign.
Scoring goals at Subaru Park has proven increasingly difficult for Toronto recently, as the Reds have been outscored 8-0 on their previous two visits there.
If they can concede fewer than four times on Sunday, they would improve their defensive numbers from a year ago when they allowed 66 goals.
Since shutting out Charlotte 2-0 in late August, Toronto has lost consecutive away games, conceding eight goals and scoring just two.
The Reds have failed to score the first goal in four of their last five league games and have not won a game in which they conceded first since beating the Union 2-1 in April.
Philadelphia Union Major League Soccer form:
Toronto Major League Soccer form:
In their previous meeting, Daniel Gazdag became the 33rd Union player to make 50 regular season starts, and is third in league scoring (19 goals) behind Sebastian Driussi (21) and Hany Mukhtar (23).
kay wagner is tied for second in the league in assists with 15, three fewer than Luciano Acostaweather Andre Blake heads into the final game of the regular season tied with Sean Johnson for the cleanest goals in MLS (14).
Wagner will be suspended for this game after receiving two bookings in Charlotte, and alexander bedoya is questionable due to a hip flexor strain.
After scoring in four straight outings, Federico Bernardeschi has failed to find the back of the net in two straight games for Toronto, while fellow Italian Lorenzo Insigne He has started the last two games after missing the previous three for personal reasons.
Quentin Westberg has started the last three games in goal for the Reds instead of alex bonusweather deandre kerr, chris mavinga Y Jesus Jimenez all were inserted into the starting 11 against Miami.
Jonathan Osorio is out due to an upper body injury, while doniel henry he won’t play because he’s dealing with a problem in his lower body.
Potential Philadelphia Union starting lineup:
Blake; Royal, Elliott, Glesnes, Harriel; Flach, Martinez, Sullivan; gazdag; Uhre, Carranza
Potential Toronto starting lineup:
Westberg; Laryea, O’Neill, Mavinga, Criscito; Nelson, Bradley, Kaye; Bernardeschi, Akinola, Insigne
We Say: Philadelphia Union 3-1 Toronto
It’s no secret that the Reds have been poor defensively throughout the campaign, and that has been especially apparent away from home, where they have conceded multiple goals on 11 occasions this year.
The Union aren’t as bad at the back as their previous game might indicate, and we anticipate they’ll be much tighter on Sunday, while Curtin has numerous goalscoring options who are capable of finding the back of the net at a moment’s notice.
For data analysis of the most probable results, scores and more for this match, click here.
Our expert tipster partners from Sporita.com predict a home win for this match. Click here to find out what else they’re predicting for this game and for more of their tried and tested soccer tips.Win at home: facts