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Absolute Destruction: Loons lose match, playoffs in 5-1 defeat

The Philadelphia Union proved to be more than Minnesota could handle

MLS: Minnesota United FC at Philadelphia Union Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

What should have been just another road loss turned into an embarrassing defeat for Minnesota United on Saturday night as the Loons fell 5-1 at the hands of the Philadelphia Union.

Manager Adrian Heath deployed a 4-2-3-1 again, with midfielders Maximiano and Fernando Bob returning from suspensions. Rasmus Schüller moved up to the left wing, and Francisco Calvo was again the left back.

The Loons pushed to attack early in the game, but without any serious chances to show for it. Philadelphia’s counter-attacking efforts hinted at an open game, and the Union’s Fafa Picault whiffed on the best chances of the opening minutes.

The Union continued to settle for the counter and picked up a reward in the form of Cory Burke, whose solo effort de-cleated Michael Boxall and went far too easily around Brent Kallman and Bobby Shuttleworth.

American international Alejando Bedoya doubled the hosts’ lead not long after. He beat all of United’s defenders to poke a cross cleanly into the net.

The molehill had yet to become a mountain however. The Union scored a third in the 23rd minute to further the Loons’ crisis. Picault made up for his earlier mistake and found the back of the net.

The damage continued as Picault added another to his tally with a beautiful but far-too-easy finish just before halftime.

Heath called the first half “unacceptable” on the Fox Sports North+ broadcast and made one change at the break, exchanging Jérôme Thiesson for Alexi Gomez. The move shifted the Loons into a 3-5-2, with Gomez and Miguel Ibarra as wingbacks.

Darwin Quintero attempted to start a comeback about ten minutes into the first half. His shot found its way past goalkeeper Andre Blake after a nice give-and-go between Quintero and Angelo Rodriguez.

Ibson and Harrison Heath replaced Maximiano and Schuller.

Philadelphia’s Ilsinho entered as a sub and added insult to injury with a long-range finish for his team’s fifth.

The Loons are home to the Colorado Rapids next weekend.