Philadelphia's Gabriel Gomez tries to get a foot on the ball between… (Victor Decolongon / Getty…)
A very stoppable force met an immovable object Saturday at the Home Depot Center.
And not surprisingly the immovable object won, with Philadelphia running Chivas USA's shutout streak to four games in a row at home in a 1-0 victory the Union finished with only eight players on the field after losing defenders Sheanon Williams and Gabriel Farfan to red cards.
Freddy Adu's goal in the 40th minute accounted for the only score.
But if Chivas still has nothing to show on the scoreboard at home, at least it's getting closer. The team's five shots on target Saturday were five more than it had in its last game at the Home Depot Center. And its 21 shots were more than it had in its last two home games combined.
Chivas USA Coach Robin Fraser was only partially interested in moral victories.
"There were some bright moments," he said. "There were times when we were able to penetrate and get into dangerous positions. We could have been rewarded for some of the things we did. But no matter how much progress you make, you have to get results."
Part of the Chivas offensive spark Saturday came from striker Juan Pablo Angel, who missed the last five games with concussion symptoms. Cleared to play Friday, he came off the bench in the 63rd minute and immediately made his presence felt, bouncing a header just wide of the left post two minutes later, then forcing goalkeeper Zac MacMath to make a save on another header in the 69th minute.
Chivas also showed some fight of a more traditional nature late in the second half after Gabriel Farfan was ejected for a hard tackle on James Riley in the 85th minute.
As Riley writhed on the ground, teammate Blair Gavin rushed in to shove Farfan from behind. He was soon joined by goalkeeper Dan Kennedy, who sprinted 50 yards up the field to scream at Farfan.
Minutes earlier, Williams had been shown off for a hard foul on Alejandro Moreno.
Unfortunately for Chivas, MacMath stuck around and proved unmovable once again, registering his third consecutive shutout and running his scoreless streak to 334 minutes, the longest current streak in Major League Soccer.
He had to work for it this time, especially in the second half when Chivas peppered him with 14 shots, nine in the final 22 minutes. Chivas also controlled the ball for two-thirds of the game.
Philadelphia's scoring play started with some remarkable ballhandling by Michael Farfan, Gabriel's brother, who eluded Heath Pearce and Oswaldo Minda as he dribbled up the right side toward the end line. From there he tried to send a low cross across the goal mouth to Adu. Fortunately for the Union, Riley slid in to try to deflect the pass, only to leave the ball unattended at the left post. From there Adu used his left boot to tap it in.