Dominating Metro settles for tie with Hartford, 1:1
August 25, 2017
May 6, 1997 is a day that will live in infamy in the state of Connecticut. On that day, the beloved Hartford Whalers announced that they will be moving to North Carolina. Connecticut has been without a major league professional team since.
Until today, that is, when our beloved Metro dominated on the field, but had to settle for a tie with the new Hartford club, 1:1.
Jesse Marsch reverted from last weekend's experimental lineup, with the defense of Kemar Lawrence, Aaron Long, and Fidel Escobar, Tyler Adams and Michael Murillo on the wing, Felipe (of course!), Sacha Kljestan, Sean Davis, and Alex Muyl in midfield, and Bradley Wright-Phillips up front. The first half saw Metro put up a terrific performance, suffocating Hartford, making it impossible for the visitors to cross the halfway line. Unfortunately, all that possession didn't result in many great opportunities, with the best coming in the waning minutes when Murillo hit the post.
Felipe nailed one off the crossbar early in the second, and then controversy struck. On a cross, Wright-Phillips, was hit from the back by RJ Allen. The Metro attacker slammed into the goalpost, a clear penalty if there was one... yet Jair Marrufo chose not to even use VAR to confirm his non-decision.
Soon after, Metro paid. Hartford went the other way, a pass split the Metro defense, and just like that, Maxi Moralez gave his team the lead in the 56th.
Metro pressed on, and in the 70th, Marrufo somewhat redeemed himself when Kljestan was pushed down in the box. Gonzalo Veron stepped up and slammed the penalty under the crossbar to tie the game. Metro had chances the rest of the way, but had to settle for a disappointing tie.
Now, one might ask, is this a rivalry? It's hard to say at this point. Clearly, the two teams are geographically close, but so are the Philly Worms, and we know what a joke that "rivalry" is. We'll have to see.
One thing that has to be mentioned: the team's new field is actually in EAST Hartford, across the river from Hartford proper. We hope their fans will be able to make that trip!
Lineup: Robles, Lawrence, Long, Escobar, Adams, Murillo, Martins, Davis, Kljestan, Muyl, Wright-Phillips. Subs: Veron, Etienne, Duka.