The 34-year old former Manchester United, Besiktas and Flamengo midfielder, in just his eighth MLS appearance, scored with a stunning 25-yard free-kick in the 95th minute at PPL Park to allow the Union to remain alive in the Eastern Conference playoff race.
Kleberson, who had played just 10 minutes of the past 16 matches, was over the moon after the match, saying that he felt he owed something to the Phillie fans.
“I’m very happy,” Kleberson said through translator, teammate and friend Leo Fernandes.
“I feel like the fans needed this. And I needed to show the fans that I could score a goal. I’m very, very happy this moment came.”
And his teammates were absolutely delighted to see the World Cup winner get some reward for the hard work he has put in since arriving at the Union.
“He deserves it,” winger Danny Cruz said. “He works so hard every day. He’s the definition of a true professional even when he hasn’t been playing.”
Defender Sheanon Williams added: “Since he’s been here, he’s been the ultimate professional. I’m sure he’s not happy with the time he’s getting. He certainly made the most of his opportunity he had tonight. He’s worked so hard in practice and I’m extremely happy for him.”
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