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Cory Burke, Alejandro Bedoya lead Union back to U.S. Open Cup final

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Cory Burke, Alejandro Bedoya lead Union back to U.S. Open Cup final

CHESTER, Pa. — For the third time in five seasons, the Union are headed to the U.S. Open Cup final. 

With the go-ahead goal and insurance from forward Cory Burke, the Union outlasted the Chicago Fire to take the semifinals matchup, 3-0, on a balmy Wednesday night at Talen Energy Stadium.

The Union, who are 0-2 in final appearances — both at home — will hit the road for their third to face the winner of LAFC-Houston Dynamo at either Banc of California Stadium or BBVA Compass Stadium. 

• In the 60th minute, Burke found the net off a beautiful give-and-go from Alejandro Bedoya and Borek Dockal. The captain chipped the final pass over the Fire’s defensive back and to Burke, who gathered and placed a shot past Richard Sanchez for the crucial 1-0 Union lead.

• Matching up with the Fire, who defeated Louisville City FC to advance, was a beneficial draw. The Union entered the match 2-0-0 against the Fire, with a 3-1 win at home on May 30, and a dramatic, last-second, 4-3 win at Toyota Park on July 11. They added another on Wednesday.

• In the 78th minute, after a heat-induced water break, Burke nabbed his second. He took a pass at the top of the box, split two Fire defenders with ease and played a right-footed shot past Sanchez for the 2-0 lead. It was also assisted by Bedoya.

• Union attacker Fafa Picault put a nail in the contest in the 86th minute by dishing to Sapong for the tap-in. Now down 3-0, the Fire were visibly gassed and defeated. 

• Center defender Jack Elliott made the start for Mark McKenzie, who was sidelined with a knee contusion. Elliott was his typically sound self to preserve the shutout. You can tell the Union feel safe with him in the back. 

• Andre Blake was also solid when he needed to be, earning the one save shutout. 

• In the 17th minute, Haris Medunjanin nearly collected the goal of the season. Outside the box, the veteran ripped a golazo-style free kick that curled inside and beat Sanchez, but plunked off the crossbar. 

• Outside of Medunjanin’s attempt, it wasn’t the most thrilling first half with both clubs appearing sluggish at times. The Union finished the stanza with nine shots, one on target. The second half was completely different, as all seven of the Union's second-half shots went on frame. 

MLS is Back Tournament 2020: Scores, schedule, TV channels, groups, odds

MLS is Back Tournament 2020: Scores, schedule, TV channels, groups, odds

Major League Soccer in the U.S. is making its comeback, four months after things ground to a halt because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

The league resumed play at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando with Orlando City and Inter Miami FC playing their first ever game against each other. It's part of a huge, World Cup-style tournament, aptly named the MLS is Back Tournament that will continue through mid-August. It should be quite a show.

What does this mean for the rest of the MLS season? What are these teams playing for in the tournament? And what's the format of this unique event?

Here are all the details you need to know about the MLS's tournament.

What does the tournament look like? When does it start?

Here's a rundown of the tournament format:

- First a group stage, then knockout rounds
- The group stage counts toward regular season points
- Tournament winner earns a 2021 Concacaf Champions League spot
- The regular season continues after tournament

And here are the key dates:

- July 8: Group Stage presented by Heineken begins
- July 25-28: Knockout Stage (Round of 16) begins
- July 30-August 1: Quarterfinals
- August 5-6: Semifinals
- August 11: Final

How are the teams grouped? 

Six groups were determined during a draw on June 10. FC Dallas and Nashville SC were forced to drop out due to COVID-19 concerns. The groups now stand:

Group A: Orlando City SC, Inter Miami CF, New York City FC, Philadelphia Union
Group B: Seattle Sounders FC, Chicago Fire FC, Vancouver Whitecaps FC, San Jose Earthquakes
Group C: Toronto FC, New England Revolution, Montreal Impact, D.C. United
Group D: Real Salt Lake, Sporting Kansas City, Colorado Rapids, Minnesota United FC
Group E: Atlanta United FC, FC Cincinnati, New York Red Bulls, Columbus Crew SC
Group F: LAFC, LA Galaxy, Houston Dynamo, Portland Timbers

Two teams will advance from each of the groups. The four teams with the best remaining records will then close out the Round of 16 knockout stage. 

How do I watch the games?

Games will be broadcast on a mixture of ESPN, TSN (Canada), TUDN (en español), FOX, FS1, TVA Sports (en français), and the respective ESPN, TSN, FOX Sports, TUDN, and TVA Sports apps, along with a few games being broadcast on Twitter. You can find specific television info for each group stage below.

MORE: Union honor Black victims of police violence with jersey names

Where can I find the schedule and results?

Here's the full schedule for the group stage, with television information and results

Wed, July 8

Orlando City SC 2, Inter Miami CF 1

Thu, July 9

Philadelphia Union 1, NYCFC 0
New England Revolution 1, Montreal Impact 0

Fri, July 10

Seattle Sounders vs San Jose Earthquakes - 9:00 PM ET

USA: ESPN, ESPN App, ESPN Deportes
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Sat, July 11

Atlanta United vs NY Red Bulls - 8:00 PM ET

USA: FOX, TUDN, TUDN App
Canada: TSN, TSN App

FC Cincinnati vs Columbus Crew SC - 10:30 PM ET

USA: FS1, FOX Sports App, TUDN, TUDN App
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Sun, July 12

Toronto FC vs D.C. United - 9:00 AM ET

USA: ESPN, ESPN App, ESPN Deportes
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Sporting KC vs Minnesota United - 8:00 PM ET

USA: ESPN, ESPN App, ESPN Deportes
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Real Salt Lake vs Colorado Rapids - 10:30 PM ET

USA: ESPN, ESPN App, ESPN Deportes
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Mon, July 13

LAFC vs Houston Dynamo -  8:00 PM ET

USA: FS1, FOX Sports App, TUDN, TUDN App
Canada: TSN, TSN App

LA Galaxy vs Portland Timbers - 10:30 PM ET

USA: FS1, FOX Sports App, TUDN, TUDN App
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Tue, July 14

Chicago Fire FC vs. Seattle Sounders FC - 9 AM ET

USA: ESPN, ESPN Deportes, ESPN app
Canada: TSN, TSN app

Orlando City SC vs NYCFC - 8 PM ET

USA: TUDN, TUDN app, Twitter (English commentary)
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Philadelphia Union vs Inter Miami FC - 10:30 PM ET

USA: TUDN, TUDN app
Canada: TSN, TSN App

MORE: Kevin Durant named part-owner of Union

Wed, July 15

Montreal Impact vs Toronto FC - 8:00 PM ET

USA: TUDN, TUDN app, Twitter (English commentary)
Canada: TSN, TSN App, TVA Sports, TVA Sports App

Vancouver Whitecaps vs San Jose Earthquakes - 10:30 PM ET

USA: TUDN, TUDN app, Twitter (English commentary)
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Thu, July 16

Atlanta United vs FC Cincinnati - 9:00 AM ET

USA: ESPN, ESPN App, ESPN Deportes
Canada: TSN, TSN App

D.C. United vs New England Revolution - 8:00 PM ET

USA: FS1, FOX Sports App, TUDN, TUDN App
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Columbus Crew SC vs NY Red Bulls - 10:30 PM ET

USA: FS1, FOX Sports App
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Fri, July 17

Sporting KC vs Colorado Rapids - 8:00 PM ET

USA: ESPN, ESPN App, ESPN Deportes
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Real Salt Lake vs Minnesota United - 10:30 PM ET

USA: ESPN, ESPN App, ESPN Deportes
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Sat, July 18

Portland Timbers vs Houston Dynamo - 8:00 PM ET

USA: ESPN2, ESPN Deportes
Canada: TSN, TSN App

LAFC vs LA Galaxy - 10:30 PM ET

USA: ESPN, ESPN App, ESPN Deportes
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Sun, July 19

San Jose Earthquakes vs Chicago Fire FC -  8:00 PM ET

USA: FS1, FOX Sports App
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Seattle Sounders FC vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC - 10:30 PM ET

USA: FS1, TUDN, Fox Sports App, TUDN App
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Mon, July 20

Inter Miami CF vs. New York City FC -  9:00 AM ET

USA: ESPN, ESPN App, ESPN Deportes
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Philadelphia Union vs. Orlando City SC - 8:00 PM ET

USA: TUDN, TUDN app, Twitter (English commentary)
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Tue, July 21

Toronto FC vs New England Revolution - 9:00 AM ET

USA: ESPN, ESPN App, ESPN Deportes
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Atlanta United vs Columbus Crew SC - 8:00 PM ET

USA: TUDN, TUDN app, Twitter (English commentary)
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Montreal Impact vs D.C. United - 10:30 PM ET

USA: TUDN, TUDN app, Twitter (English commentary)
Canada: TSN, TSN App, TVA Sports, TVA Sports App

Wed, July 22

Real Salt Lake vs Sporting KC - 9:00 AM ET

USA: ESPN, ESPN App, ESPN Deportes
Canada: TSN, TSN App

FC Cincinnati vs NY Red Bulls - 8:00 PM ET

USA: ESPN, ESPN App, ESPN Deportes
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Colorado Rapids vs Minnesota United - 10:30 PM ET

USA: ESPN, ESPN App, ESPN Deportes
Canada: TSN, TSN App

Thu, July 23

LA Galaxy vs Houston Dynamo - 8:00 PM ET

USA: FS1, FOX Sports App, TUDN, TUDN App
Canada: TSN, TSN App

LAFC vs Portland Timbers - 10:30 PM ET

USA: ESPN2, ESPN Deportes
Canada: TSN, TSN App

What's up with the Union?

When the MLS paused its season in mid-March, the Union had played just two matches: a 2-0 loss at FC Dallas, and a 3-3 draw at LAFC.

The Union are part of Group A, which includes the Union, Orlando City SC, Inter Miami CF, and New York City FC. Two teams from Group A will advance. The Union won their first group match, a 1-0 victory against NYCFC, on July 9.

Who are the best bets to win?

Here's a look at every team's odds to win the tournament, from Fox Bet:

LAFC: +450
Seattle Sounders: +850
Atlanta United: +1000
Toronto FC: +1000
Sporting KC: +1300
Philadelphia Union: +1500
NYCFC: +1500
Inter Miami: +1600
NY Red Bulls: +1700
Columbus Crew: +1900
Minnesota United: +1900
LA Galaxy: +2100
Orlando City SC: +2600
Portland Timbers: +2600
San Jose Earthquakes: +2900
Chicago Fire FC: +3400
New England Revolution: +3400
Montreal Impact: +3400
Real Salt Lake: +4100
Colorado Rapids: +4100
FC Cincinnati: +5100
Houston Dynamo: +5100
DC United: +5100
Vancouver Whitecaps: +6700

Will fans be allowed at games?

Because of safety protocols and restrictions put in place to keep players safe during the COVID-19 pandemic, fans will not be allowed at games.

Is anyone dropping out or opting out?

FC Dallas dropped out of the tournament earlier this week because 10 of the team's players and one member of the team's technical staff tested positive. Nashville SC dropped out of the tournament on July 9 because nine of the team's players tested positive.

LAFC's Carlos Vela and the Vancouver Whitecaps' Fredy Montero have both voluntarily opted out of the tournament.

Philadelphia Union honor Black victims of police brutality with amazing jersey nod

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@PhilaUnion/Twitter

Philadelphia Union honor Black victims of police brutality with amazing jersey nod

The Philadelphia Union returned to action Thursday morning in the MLS is Back Tournament, the first game since June's nationwide protests against police brutality and institutional racism.

In what ESPN's commentators suggested was an unexpected move, the Union revealed their Black Lives Matter shirts to reveal jerseys bearing the names of Black men, women, boys, and girls who were killed by police. 

Here's a look at the team's jerseys:

MORE: Everything you need to know about the 2020 MLS is Back Tournament

And here's a list of the Black lives the players honored:

No. 3 Jack Elliott: Eric Garner

No. 4 Mark McKenzie: Tamir Rice

No. 22 Brenden Aaronson: Tyree Crawford

No. 13 Cole Turner: Freddie Gray

No. 15 Olivier Mbaizo: India Kager

No. 27 Kai Wagner: Laquan McDonald

No. 12 Joe Bendik: Justus Howell

No. 5 Jakob Glesnes: Ronell Foster

No. 8 Jose Martinez: Tony Robinson

No. 10 Jamiro Monteiro: Alton Sterling

No. 28 Raymon Gaddis: Breanna Taylor

No. 32 Matt Real: Lamontez Jones

No. 14 Jack de Vries: Willie Tillman

No. 25 Ilsinho: Philando Castile

No. 21 Anthony Fontana: Natasha McKenna

No. 1 Matt Freese: Sandra Bland

No. 11 Alejandro Bedoya: Walter Scott

No. 24 Matej Oravec:  John Crawford III

No. 78 Aurelien Collin: Alteria Woods

No. 18 Andre Blake: George Floyd

No. 23 Kacper Przybylko: Michael Brown

No. 2 Warren Creavalle: Elijah McClain

The names were accompanied by messages on the bottoms of the jerseys, including "One name too many" and "Todos somos iguales", Spanish for "We are all equals".

The Union also created a custom armband for captain Alejandro Bedoya to wear, bearing the names of Black victims of police brutality:

The MLS returned to play Wednesday. The tournament is scheduled to run until August 11.

Elsewhere, the English Premier League wore the phrase "Black Lives Matter" in place of last names on players' jerseys when the league returned last month.

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