C.J. Sapong

Union lose at NYFC in regular season finale with playoff seeding on line

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Union lose at NYFC in regular season finale with playoff seeding on line

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NEW YORK — David Villa scored his 14th goal of the season and New York City FC beat the Philadelphia Union 3-1 on Sunday to clinch the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference.

NYCFC (16-10-8) won for just the second time in its last 10 matches, with five loses, averaging just 0.9 goals per game. Philadelphia (15-14-5) has lost five of its nine matches against NYCFC.

Either team could have secured the top-three seed with a victory.

NYCFC had a 2-0 lead in the opening 10 minutes on Maxime Chanot's first goal of the season and Auston Trusty's own goal. Villa made it 3-1 in the 34th.

Cory Burke pulled Philadelphia within 2-1 in the 14th. C.J. Sapong was fouled inside the penalty area in the 59th, but NYCFC goalkeeper Sean Johnson denied Fafa Picault's penalty shot, diving to his right to block the low attempt.

Union blank D.C. United for 4th straight win to tie franchise mark

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Union blank D.C. United for 4th straight win to tie franchise mark

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WASHINGTON — C.J. Sapong had a goal and an assist, helping the Union beat D.C. United, 2-0, on Wednesday night for their fourth straight victory.

The Union (12-11-3) matched the club's highest win total, set in 2013. D.C. United (7-11-6) has lost two games in a row after a three-game winning streak.

Sapong opened the scoring in the 29th minute with an easy finish of a rebound for his first goal since July 21. He has eight goals in 10 games against D.C. United.

Fabrice-Jean Picault added a goal in the 61st. He was wide open at the penalty spot and easily sent home Sapong's cross. Andre Blake had his eighth shutout of the season, three behind league-leader Tim Melia of Sporting Kansas City.

Wayne Rooney had two good scoring chances for D.C. United, but one hit the post and a chip went just wide.

Win over Revolution crucial for Union in Eastern Conference playoff picture

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Win over Revolution crucial for Union in Eastern Conference playoff picture

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CHESTER, Pa. — Make it three for the red-hot Union. 

With a second-half goal from Cory Burke, the Union claim their third consecutive win by taking down the New England Revolution, 1-0, on Saturday at Talen Energy Stadium. 

While also keeping their win streak alive, the victory was an important one standings-wise for the Union, who are fighting for position in the Eastern Conference playoff picture. At 11-11-3, the Union jumped seven points above the 7-10-8 Revs, who are currently on the outside looking in. 

• After 54 minutes of groggy play from both sides and the lifeless crowd, the building saw an injection of energy when Haris Medunjanin sent Burke free on a wide-open breakaway. The linesman’s flag went up for the offside, but Burke continued, beat goalkeeper Matt Turner and scored.

• It’s a good thing he persisted. Hesitating to restart the play, and after a lengthy celebration from Burke, referee Drew Fischer called for a VAR review on the offside, which confirmed the erroneous call. Burke’s goal would stand to give the Union the 1-0 lead.
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• The goal was Burke’s seventh in 21 games and fifth in his last seven. He has goals in back-to-back games.

• During the deliberation, Medunjanin got into it with the Revs coaching staff. When the goal was announced, he had to be physically separated from the staff, then the players at midfield. He started waving his arms to pump up the crowd, which awoke from their first-half slumber to reach a fever pitch.

• But the Revs didn’t roll over. After the second half continued, Union goalkeeper Andre Blake was forced into two fingertip saves to keep the Union in the lead. Blake held the four-save shutout -- his second consecutive clean sheet.

• With 90 minutes on Saturday, Ray Gaddis passed former Union midfielder Brian Carroll as the Union’s all-time minutes leader with over 13,863.
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• The match was also C.J. Sapong’s 100th in a Union uniform. He’s the eighth player in team history to hit that mark, joining Sebastien Le Toux, Ray Gaddis, Brian Carroll, Amobi Okugo, Sheanon Williams, Zac MacMath and Fabinho.

• Next up, the Union travel to Audi Field for the first time to challenge Wayne Rooney and D.C. United, another team pressing for playoff position in the East.