April 19, 2021

D.C. United Game 13 Preview: Defending MLS Cup champs visit RFK tonight

D.C. United looks to make up ground in Major League Soccer’s Eastern Conference tonight when Sporting Kansas City comes to RFK for a 7 p.m. kickoff. The game will be broadcast locally on CSN. Given the combination of United forward Eddie Johnson having his red card from last week rescinded, and the lack of availability for a couple key Sporting Kansas City players, United are presented with a decent chance to get all three points and move to 6-4-3 on the season.

United comes into tonight’s match off a 2-1 loss at Eastern leaders New England last week. D.C. sit five points behind the Revolution in the race for first place, and one point back of SKC for second. United are 4-0-2 in the last six home matches following a season-opening loss to the Columbus Crew. Sporting Kansas City is 2-3 away from home in 2014. [Read more…]

D.C. United Analysis: First-quarter evaluation, part 3 – Midfielders

Of all the pieces of this week-long series evaluating D.C. United through about the first quarter of the 2014 Major League Soccer season, considering the value and effectiveness of the midfield might be the most difficult. Unlike defense and forward, the midfield wasn’t completely plowed over in the offseason, as the intention was to have relative veterans Nick DeLeon, Chris Pontius, and Perry Kitchen anchoring the middle of the field, supplemented by new acquisition and MLS veteran Davy Arnaud.

Nine matches into the season, that plan has already undergone a significant adjustment due to Pontius being unavailable due to injury. With the Washington Post reporting in late April that recovery from a hamstring injury will likely keep Pontius out for most of the regular season, midfield is one area where United’s best plan has already been rubbished. [Read more…]

D.C. United Game 8 Recap: Goals early and late seal United’s fate at Portland

For about 92 minutes, maybe 92 minutes, 30 seconds, D.C. United didn’t play spectacularly, but the club probably played well enough to win at the Portland Timbers late Saturday night. Surely during that time, United played well enough at least to earn a draw and a valuable road point. Instead, however, United gave up goals in the first minute and the final minute in a 3-2 loss before 20,814 at Providence Park. Gastón Fernández notched the goal about 35 seconds in to give the Timbers the lead and Maximiliano Urruti scored on a rebound in the final minute of stoppage time.

The loss ended United’s five-match unbeaten streak and dropped the Major League Soccer club back to .500 on the season at 3-3-2 (11 points). A win would have lifted United into a first-place tie in the Eastern Conference with the New England Revolution, winners at Toronto Saturday. Instead, United sit in a four-team logjam for third place. The win was Portland’s (1-3-5, 8 points) first of the season. [Read more…]

D.C. United Game 3 Recap: Progress made but United fails to finish Fire

Javier Espindola and Perry Kitchen scored D.C. United’s first goals of the 2014 Major League Soccer season, but a late defensive lapse cost the home team as United played to a 2-2 tie against the Chicago Fire at RFK Stadium on a rainy Saturday afternoon in Washington. The draw marks United’s first point in the standings this season, with the team’s record now standing at 0-2-1. Chicago, who got goals from Jhon Kennedy Hurtado and Quincy Amarikwa to begin and end the scoring, is now 0-1-3.

While the draw and goals are encouraging for United, Amarikwa’s goal in the 82nd minute that erased United’s 2-1 lead cost D.C. the chance to break what is now a 15-game winless streak in the league dating back to last August. United had done a lot right prior to that. The attack looked more coordinated Saturday than in either of the club’s first two matches this year, and carried a good bit of the play through the first half. But it wasn’t until Hurtado scored for the first time in five years after a Chicago corner kick that D.C. was able to wake up and find the back of the net for the first time all season. [Read more…]

D.C. United Game 33 Recap: United fall by a goal at Sporting KC

In one instant, it was easy to tell which team was competing for Major League Soccer’s Supporters’ Shield, and which team was going to finish bottom of the league.

United midfielder Perry Kitchen’s (playing defender) soft back pass toward goalkeeper Bill Hamid was intercepted by Sporting Kansas City forward Dominic Dwyer, who then beat Hamid for the only goal in SKC’s 1-0 win over United before 18,932 at Sporting Park Friday night. [Read more…]

D.C. United Game 28 Recap: Porter’s late goal salvages 2-2 draw for D.C.

On a day where D.C. United legend Jaime Moreno was inducted into the club’s Hall of Tradition, the current D.C. United team twice fought back from a goal down to take a well-earned point in a 2-2 draw with the two-time defending MLS Cup champion Los Angeles Galaxy.

Chris Pontius scored in the 34th minute to dispose of an early LA 1-0 lead, then Kyle Porter scored in the 84th minute on a header, just three minutes after the Galaxy had retaken the lead, as United scored multiple goals in a Major League Soccer match for the first time since August 3, in a 3-1 win over the Montreal Impact. United are now 3-19-6 (15 points) on the season. LA now stands 13-10-5 (44 points). [Read more…]

D.C. United Open Cup Game Recap: United survive Richmond’s upset bid in penalties

For 120 minutes in Richmond Tuesday night, D.C. United did what D.C. United mostly does – fail to score. But this time, United found a light at the end of the tunnel in the form of penalty kicks. United outscored the Richmond Kickers, 4-2, in the penalty shootout to defeat the Kickers after a 0-0 draw through regulation and extra time in the third round of the U.S. Open Cup at City Stadium.

United advances to host Major League Soccer rival Philadelphia Union in the fourth round on June 12, according to thecup.us. The Union defeated the Ocean City Nor’easters (PDL), 2-1, on a stoppage time goal by former United midfielder Brian Carroll. [Read more…]

D.C. United GAME 7 RECAP: Two goals, but no points, for United vs. Philadelphia

Despite looking better at times in play and equaling its Major League Soccer season total with two goals, D.C. United lost at home to the Philadelphia Union, 3-2, in front of 12,349 at RFK Stadium Sunday afternoon. United fell to 1-5-1 (4 points) on the season, while the Union improved to 3-2-2 (11 points). The loss leaves United last in the Eastern Conference, 10 points behind leaders Sporting Kansas City.

Perry Kitchen (first of the season) and Lionard Pajoy (second) scored the two United goals, but they were too little, too late. The Union took a 2-0 lead early against a lethargic United side to start the game. Jack McInerney scored twice for Philadelphia, while Conor Casey added the other, as United lost its third straight home match following a 19-match unbeaten streak in the league stretching back to early last season. [Read more…]

D.C. United GAME 1 ANALYSIS: With perfection required, United fell short in opener

A tie in the season opener isn’t exactly what D.C. United would dreamed of from its Major League Soccer season opener Saturday night at the Houston Dynamo. In retrospect, however, a tie would have been a good result given the starting lineup and how the match played out. The Dynamo won the game, 2-0, on two goals in the final 10 minutes.

Saturday’s lineup featured Lionard Pajoy starring as the lone forward. Not that he was the only player with attacking capabilities, certainly, as midfielders Chris Pontius and Nick DeLeon are capable of scoring goals and setting them up. United outnumbered Houston in the midfield, 5-4, but with star midfielder Dwayne De Rosario out (suspension), D.C. didn’t control the midfield, despite the numbers, leading to a 60%-40% discrepancy in ball possession in Houston’s favor.

With Pajoy alone up top, what often happened is either he wasn’t available for the midfielders to outlet to, or when he was on the ball, he was quickly surrounded by orange-clad Dynamo defenders, unable to distribute the ball because no one had joined the attack to support Pajoy. Pontius tried to help, but missed a header high in the second half after crashing a free kick off the crossbar late in the first half. When it was over, United hadn’t forced Houston goalkeeper Tally Hall to make a save; no shots on goal from seven attempts. United had but two corner kicks to Houston’s six.

[Read more…]

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