By Kevin K
The Philadelphia Union officially ended their first ever season by finishing 7th in the Eastern Conference (second to last) but overcame struggles along the way.
Philadelphia is a town where people said "soccer had no chance of succeeding". The Union are proving them wrong. Yes the Union ended with an under .500 record, but it was only year one for them. At home the Union had six wins, three losses, and six draws, which is very impressive and shows the true home field advantage Philly brings.
On the road, however, the Union ended with 12 losses, which was the worst of any MLS team. However, the Union's first eight out of ten games were played on the road, something that NO OTHER team faced in 2010. A normal schedule in 2011 may make a huge difference in record for the Union.
Stars are born: The Union built soccer stars in this city, as Sebastian Le Toux and Danny Mwanga have become two of the biggest starts in MLS. Mwanga, who was snubbed of the Rookie of the Year title. Mwanga said he is not disappointed in the snub, but looking forward to improving in 2011. Mwanga played 24 games, scoring 7 goals and 4 assists on the season.
Sebastian Le Toux by far became the star of the young MLS team. Le Toux played in 28 of the 30 games for the Union, scoring 14 goals on the season (that averages 1 goal every 2 games). Of his 90 shots, 48 were on goal. No other player in MLS put more of his shots on target. Le Toux also lead the Union in assists with 11 on the year.
The Union also liked to "leave it late" this season. They scored a total of 12 goals in the final 15 minutes of play this year, drawing up some amazing come backs.
Philadelphia CAN succeed as a Soccer Town: The success of the Philadelphia Union has given Philadelphia an opportunity to be in the running for a future World Cup. Philadelphia has more than 102,400 signatures to sit atop the leaderboard and holds a more than 20,000-signature lead in the competition against 17 other finalist U.S. cities.
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