Danny Mwanga scored an 84th minute equalizer as the Philadelphia Union fought back for a 1-1 draw with the L.A. Galaxy Wednesday night at PPL Park. It was the second year forward’s first goal of the season.
US Men’s National Team fixture Landon Donovan provided the first goal of the game and his fifth of the year. He looked to have set up Juan Pablo Angel for a good scoring chance with a nifty back heel pass, but the former Red Bull NY striker appeared to trip over the ball in the box, knocking over Union defender Danny Califf in the process. Donovan ran onto the loose ball and knocked it past Faryd Mondragon to put the Galaxy up 1-0 in the 24th minute.
The Galaxy would maintain that advantage for the next hour as the Union rarely threatened. In fact, the home side would not even record a shot on net until the 73rd minute.
In the end, it was a mistake on the Galaxy’s part that led to the Union’s tying goal. Galaxy defender Sean Franklin, committed an inexplicable giveaway where he basically played the ball straight into Mwanga’s path streaking into the box. Galaxy netminder Donovan Ricketts came barreling off his line to break it up, but Mwanga calmly rounded him and fired the ball into the net from a tough angle.
Both teams were without notable faces tonight. The Galaxy left David Beckham back in LA for rest, while Union manager Peter Nowak missed the game while away in Poland playing in a charity match. Union assistant coach John Hackworth managed the team in his absence.
The game drew a record crowd of 19,178 to PPL Park.