Philadelphia had its chances.
But against the Sounders’ defensive lineup, the Union couldn’t keep its hot scoring streak going. The Sounders were able to slip away with a scoreless draw at Talen Energy Stadium.
“Statistically, it wasn’t a good game for us,” said Sounders coach Brian Schmetzer via audio provided by MLS. The Union possessed the ball for 67.8 percent of the match and had 20 total shots while limiting Seattle to six attempts, one on-target.
The Sounders (7-1-5) are winless in Philadelphia. However, the outcome was a positive for the visitors considering all the Sounders had working against them Saturday in injuries and travel after playing Wednesday at home.
The club traveled without forward Jordan Morris, left winger Victor Rodriguez, and defenders Gustav Svensson and Chad Marshall.
To withstand the lack of starters against a Union team that’s second in the Eastern Conference standings, Schmetzer opted to use a defensive lineup.
The defensive lineup frustrated the Union (7-3-3). Despite dominating possession in the opening half at 66.9 percent, it could only create one shot on goal when midfielder Brenden Aaronson whacked the ball from outside the penalty box.
Sounders keeper Stefan Frei dived for an outstretched, right-handed save in the 18th minute.
The Sounders had their sole goal attempt in the 40th minute. Will Bruin had a header on a set piece from Nico Lodeiro, but the soft shot was an easy catch for Philadelphia goalie Andre Blake.
Schmetzer switched to a more offensive attack late in the match. Raul Ruidiaz subbed for Bruin in the 79th minute and created a frantic finish with midfielder Handwalla Bwana.
But as the Sounders tried to create more attempts, the Union picked up its pressure, too. Frei had five of his six saves in the second half, including an up-close header attempt by Ilsinho.
The result was the Union’s first shutout since a loss April 13. In its last three matches, Philadelphia scored 10 goals while allowing just two.
“Draws like this feel like a win,” Schmetzer said.