Philadelphia Union 3, Columbus Crew SC 0 | 2017 MLS Match Recap
Four days after falling on the road to Crew SC, the Union exacted revenge by posting a big 3-0 victory at home against a Columbus side that finished with nine men. C.J. Sapong led the way in the Eastern Conference tilt at Talen Energy Stadium with a goal and two assists. The other two tallies came from Ilsinho and Marcus Epps.
Crew SC fell behind in the 20th minute, but their challenge became steeper once Jonathan Mensah was sent off with a straight red card in the 35th minute. Columbus then lost Lalas Abubakar to an ejection in the 76th minute, all but ending their chances of pulling off a late comeback.
- SAPONG SHINES: C.J. Sapong drew a first-half penalty that he was upset about not taking, and he responded by scoring a goal in the second stanza and setting up an insurance goal with a nice header. Combine those contributions with his first-half assist on Ilsinho's winner and this was a very good day at the office for Sapong.
- SEEING RED: Columbus Crew SC were second-best for much of the match, and a major reason for that was their pair of ejections. Jonathan Mensah was sent off in the 35th minute for trampling Sapong to deny an obvious goal scoring opportunity and Lalas Abubakar was booked for a second time after making contact on Ilsinho. Beating the Union for a second time in four days was always going to be tough, but doing so with nine men was mission impossible.
- COULD'VE BEEN WORSE: Columbus had a golden opportunity to pull level go to waste when Ola Kamara smacked the crossbar from close range in the first half, but Philadelphia were the ones denied by the woodwork on a number of occasions. Sapong hit the post one effort after halftime, and the Union also saw their first-half penalty kick pushed off the crossbar by Zack Steffen. The Union won by a lopsided margin, but it could have been even bigger than it was.