Coming off their most emotional loss of the season and possibly in their three-year existence, the Union are still working to shake off the sting of the embarrassment of the extra-time loss the San Jose Earthquakes at PPL Park last Saturday.
When you lose the way we lost on Saturday night, everybody in our locker room believes that was an unjust result, it was stolen away from us, said assistant coach John Hackworth, whos filling in for suspended Peter Nowak. When you have that feeling, you want to get out and play again to right the wrong.
Haunted by the loss, in which they allowed a pair of headers from Steven Lenhart in the final moments of the game, the Union can go one of two ways. Their confidence can drop or they can channel the anger and come back a stronger group when they face the Seattle Sounders on Saturday at CenturyLink Field. Hackworth is betting on the latter.
Hopefully we go out and play a good game, perform well and have a little chip and edge to us, he said. Traveling all the way to Seattle against a very good team, its a huge ask for us. But were ready.
What doomed the Union against the Quakes was the same thing that has them sitting at 2-4-1 on the year failure to grasp scoring opportunities. With just five goals in seven games and just one from their forward group, the Union are earning the chances but dont have the killer instincts to finish the play. That has to change if the club wants out of their current hole.
Saturday night, I thought it was unacceptable, Hackworth said about the Union not having more chances at the Quakes goal. It was tough to swallow that defeat for the past couple nights. The players know it, its not like we have to remind them.
Facing a Sounders team that has only allowed three goals in six games heading into their Wednesday night face-off against the LA Galaxy, the Union will be forced to attack if they want any chance of success.
Each player has that chance to score and we know when we let a game like Saturday slip away, the burden falls on us a little more, Hackworth said. Its about your foundation and what you believe in to get you through the tough times. We have to fire away against a good Seattle team in a hostile environment.
Hackworth also believes that the Union are closer than they may appear to figuring out the missing offense and can hopefully learn from the home loss.
The numbers we had going forward were great on Saturday, we were there, Hackworth said. Hopefully, we can take the things we didnt do well and turn it into positives against Seattle.
E-mail Ryan Bright at RyanBright13@gmail.com