Gaven's late strike helps Crew down Union

Eddie Gaven struck in the dying minutes to help the Columbus Crew claim a 2-1 win over the Philadelphia Union at PPL Park on Wednesday.

The Union spoiled a one-goal lead handed to them by Carlos Valdes' deflected free kick in the 29th minute.

Josh Williams equalized just before halftime, heading home a free kick delivery from Federico Higuain, but went from hero to goat in the 68th minute when he was issued a straight red card.

Playing down a man ultimately made no difference for the Crew as Higuain, Justin Meram and Gaven connected deep into second-half stoppage time to lift the visitors to all three points.

The telling goal came in the fifth minute of stoppage as Meram drew Zac MacMath off his line and squared the ball for Gaven to convert his seventh goal of the campaign.

Columbus (11-8-6) sits tied with the Montreal Impact on 39 points apiece, one point shy of a playoff spot despite having played three fewer matches than the Canadian club.

Philadelphia (7-13-4) is winless in its last five league games, staying third from bottom in the Eastern Conference with 25 points.