MLS Snapshot: Chicago Fire 3-0 Philadelphia Union (video)

Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

The game in 100 words (or less): Who knows what’s happening — let alone what’s going to happen — in the Eastern Conference? You don’t, even if you think you do. I know, without a single doubt in my mind, that I don’t either. We’re all in the same boat after a result like the (previously) last-place Chicago Fire’s 3-0 victory over over the fourth-place Philadelphia Union on Saturday. It was anything but pretty, of course, but first-year head coach Veljko Paunovic has the bunch from Bridgeview looking more and more like a professional soccer team with each passing week (now just one loss in their last five games). Roland Alberg opened the scoring with an unfortuante (but deserved — further explanation of that below), and Michael de Leeuw scored from a simple tap-in. Not pretty, but they all count the same. Finally, the Fire are out of the MLS cellar.

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Three moments that mattered 

22′ — Alberg credited with an own goal — After his pathetic play-acting and blatant cheating last weekend, some might say the soccer gods have it out for Alberg.

31′ — Pontius goes upper-90, but Johnson tips it over — Chris Pontius couldn’t have place this much better than he did, and Sean Johnson couldn’t have reacted any better than he did.

71′ — De Leeuw heads home to make it 2-0 — Here, you can see every Union defender to rotate while in emergency transition, which is almost always a very bad thing.

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Man of the match: Sean Johnson

Goalscorers: Alberg (22′ – OG), De Leeuw (71′), Alvarez (90′)