May 22, 2017

D.C. United Game 9 Recap: Sporting Kansas City earn draw away to United

D.C. United’s unbeaten run in Major League Soccer is now at seven games thanks to a 1-1 tie against Sporting Kansas City in front of 16,221 at RFK Stadium.

United went ahead late in the first half as Chris Pontius chested down Perry Kitchen’s cross into the path of the onrushing Jairo Arrieta in the penalty area. Arrieta made no mistake from 10 yards out, and put the home side into the lead in the 43rd minute of the game.

However, the hosts could not hold their lead for very long, as Sporting came roaring back to equalize just a minute later. Roger Espinoza showed a burst of pace to take him to the byline and sent in a cross that Dom Dwyer turned and finished brilliantly to bring Kansas City level. [Read more…]

D.C. United Game 31 Recap: United’s epic turnaround continues as D.C. clinches playoff spot

SCORELESS DRAW VS. SPORTING KANSAS CITY SENDS UNITED INTO POSTSEASON

On this night, a draw will feel just fine for D.C. United. A 0-0 tie against visiting Sporting Kansas City before nearly 20,000 in the rain at RFK Stadium lifted United’s record to 15-9-7, and the 52 points are enough for D.C. to grab one of Major League Soccer’s five Eastern Conference playoff berths. Sporting Kansas City now stands 13-11-7 (46 points), remaining six points behind leaders United in the East.

United goalkeeper Bill Hamid made a couple nice saves and three overall in posting his career-high 10th shutout of the season and 30th of his MLS career. D.C. had chances to break the deadlock, but multiple Fabian Espindola shots went wide, and mid-air contact on Chris Pontius in the SKC penalty area did not result in a spot kick in the judgment of referee Hilario Grajeda. Davy Arnaud was cautioned for United, and will be suspended for a game upon his next yellow card. [Read more…]

D.C. United Game 13 Recap: One brilliant Espindola goal enough for United victory

Fabian Espindola’s campaign for Major League Soccer MVP benefited from another memorable moment Saturday night, as D.C. United’s leading scorer lofted home a ridiculous goal in the first half that stood up in United’s 1-0 win over Sporting Kansas City before 18,522 on a beautiful night at RFK Stadium. The win lifted United into second place in the Eastern Conference (6-4-3, 21 points), just two points out of first thanks to New England’s shocking loss to Montreal.

For all Espindola has done in helping to resurrect United on the field so far this season, his goal Saturday night was the masterpiece of his highlight video. Taking a layoff from right back Chris Korb, Espindola appeared to pose little threat, as SKC defender Seth Sinovic tracked him, but didn’t close him down. This can be forgiven, since Espindola was moving the ball back to his left, away from goal. [Read more…]

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 Game 11 Analysis: United find starting point to end losing skid

It wasn’t a win, so let’s get that out of the way first. But, D.C. United did manage a 1-1 home draw with Sporting Kansas City at RFK Stadium Sunday evening, ending the club’s losing streak at seven matches. United still hasn’t won since the second game of the season, a 1-0 victory over Real Salt Lake at RFK. However, given the long losing skid, any point is a good one.

United improved to 1-8-2 on the season, good enough for 5 points. But also bad enough to continue the club’s residence in the cellar of Major League Soccer’s Eastern Conference. United are two points behind Toronto FC and the Chicago Fire, who are tied for 7th in the conference on 7 points. United play both Toronto and Chicago (as well as 6th-place New England) as part of their next four games (the other being the next one at home to the Portland Timbers this Saturday at 7 p.m.). [Read more…]

D.C. United GAME 5 ANALYSIS: One slip sinks United ship

One play turned what would have been a scoreless draw into a 1-0 loss for D.C. United at Sporting Kansas City Friday night. A goal was scored by SKC’s Claudio Bieler, set up by Soony Saad, started with a bad United turnover deep on its own side of the field. In many games, such an error would be just one part of the total picture. But given how United has played in its three away matches this season, such a play becomes the flash point to decide the contest, because United’s defense and goalkeeper Bill Hamid simply must be perfect for United to have any hope of obtaining even a single point – never mind winning and getting three.

Consider these numbers from United’s first three away matches – at Houston, New York, and Kansas City: [Read more…]

D.C. United GAME 5 RECAP: Road woes continue as United fall late at Kansas City

Claudio Bieler scored the game’s only goal in the 89th minute to lift Sporting Kansas City to a 1-0 victory over D.C. United at Sporting Park. United fell to 1-3-1 (4 points) on the season. Kansas City improved to 3-1-2 (11 points), as the top of Major League Soccer’s Eastern Conference continues to distance itself from United.

The winning goal started with United giving away possession deep in its defensive third, to goalkeeper Bill Hamid’s right. SKC substitute Soony Saad took the ball away from Marcos Sanchez, but didn’t appear threatening given his proximity to the end line and combined with the fact that Marcelo Saragosa was also on the scene to defend. [Read more…]

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