The Philadelphia federation will be without 11 players on Sunday when the team takes on NYCFC in the MLS Eastern Conference Finals due to COVID-19 health and safety protocols.
Players dropped for the game included captain Alejandro Bedoya and goalkeeper Andre Blake, as well as defenders Jack Elliott, Jacob Glasness, Kai Wagner and Alvas Powell. Forwards Corey Burke and Sergio Santos, midfielders Ilsinho and Quinn Sullivan and goalkeeper Joe Bendick were also in the squad.
The union was unable to practice on Thursday due to league protocols, but training resumed on Friday.
“Our players have worked tirelessly to reach this point. I know they will be brave even in the adversity we are facing now,” said union coach Jim Curtin. “We have taken in big moments throughout the year, be it international absences, the challenges of CONCACAF, players losing their loved ones, both on and off the field. This group is always looking for a way to step up. And I hope this weekend will be more like that. We look forward to the challenge. We’ve had a next-man-up mentality throughout the season. ,
Curtin announced during the regular season that all players in the Union had been vaccinated. Individual players may not have tested positive for the coronavirus, but they may have come in contact with a person with a suspected case.
On Saturday, Philadelphia added three players to their roster for the game, signing defenders Brandon Craig and Anton Sorenson on short-term agreements and adding league pool goalkeeper Greg Ranjitsinh. The union was able to bring in players due to extreme difficulty.
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