DC United have now lost against both conference champs already this year, and we have only played two games. Some people are calling for heads while others are calling for improvement, and that’s what we saw against the reigning Western Conference champs. The rookie Nick DeLeon even picked up his first goal after capping his excellent run with a finish that would make even Fernando Torres envious (well, any finish would I guess).
The surprise line up dropped both Hamdi Salihi and Branko Boskovic to the bench.
Robbie Keane, the former Inter, Liverpool and Tottenham stand-out scored a brace. His first goal came moments before half time after he headed from the near post to set the Galaxy ahead going into the half.
Keane got his second after Landon Donovan dispossessed Boskovic and played the ball to Keane who finished cooly from 16 yards out.
Sarvas got the last of the goals for the Galaxy in the 85′ and made sure United had no way of catching up.
United got their first goal of the season though DeLeon who’s goal was excellent. He was played through by Saragosa and only had the Josh Saunders to beat. And beat he did as he fired a curler at the far post, which he struck, and into the net. Finally something to look at.
It was another match where United just couldn’t get that spark to send them ahead and away from their opposition. The Galaxy fully deserved the match, but United blew several of their chances and could have come away with a result if they could hit the target. That will be something to work on.
DC United lose late after substitute CJ Sapong heads home after losing his marker to ruin the opening day festivities for United fans.
The match started out with United being very direct. Hoofing balls to the forwards and bypassing the midfield, shooting themselves in the foot. Sporting Kansas City is deadly with the ball, and if it wasn’t for Bill Hamid, Kansas City could’ve won the match several goals to none.
Kansas City outshot United 17-7 and had 57% of the possession. This is a recipe for disaster against the Eastern Conference Champs. The brightest moment of the match was Hamid’s stop on Kai Kamera’s point-blank header.
Despite Kansas City controlling the match, we can take something from the match, we didn’t let them score until stoppage time. So close to a draw.
The attack of United lacked the supply on the ground they desperately needed. MVP Dwayne de Rosario and DP Hamdi Salihi were stuck fighting for balls in the air and weren’t given enough support on the ground. This let Kansas City run all over the black-and-red.
Salihi said after the game,
“We tried to go to goal and to score in the wrong way I think,” added Salihi. “We have to move the ball, to wait and to be patient. [We can't] just kick it and go with no idea to goal.”
This basically sums up United’s match against Kansas where they managed to only put one shot on target.
The season has already begun, but we go to Los Angeles to face the Galaxy on Sunday.
It’s Tuesday. Four days away from the season and home opener. With the news from camp is there is a new trialist in training. Lewis Neal, an English midfielder, will be training with the team. Neal started his career at Stoke City but played for Carlisle United and Shrewsbury Tow. He made 150 appearances in England and has been playing at Orlando City SC where he notched four goals and three assists in 21 appearances for the Florida club.
In other trialist news, Jose Burciago has been released from training without a contract. Best wishes to you lad.
And just for fun, here’s a video that was posted from the DC United YouTube account of the players 2012 goals and ambitions.
DC United’s match with the Columbus Crew was canceled due to rain. It would have been United’s last match of the preseason against a Columbus Crew side that finished fourth in the Eastern Conference last year. It rounds up the Carolina Challenge Cup also. With two wins, United win the cup and look good starting out the year against the current Eastern Conference champs, Sporting Kansas City.
But what did we learn at the Carolina Challenge Cup?
The defense looks much stronger.
United only let one goal through in their two matches despite being peppered with shots against the Chicago Fire. With two trialist’s competing with Daniel Woolard for the left back role, we could see that spot hopefully mad solid. The middle of the defense has three people competing for the two spots, which could really create a solid defense. Emiliano Dudar was solid when he came on and Dejan Jakovic and Brandon McDonald were solid despite facing pressure. Despite Bill Hamid being the starting keeper, Joe Willis also put in a great showing in net. The keeper showed depth for the keeper position and should prove a good asset when Hamid is out for whatever reason.
Hamdi Salihi is for real.
Salihi’s scoring record in Europe shows he is of quality, but his goal-a-game average in the Carolina Challenge Cup despite not playing much shows that he will be a pest for opposing defenses. The Crew game being canceled is a drag because his runs are much different then you will see from an American and will take time to get some good chemistry. Him and Dwayne de Rosario should be interesting, and if played well, could be the top attack force in the East.
United have depth.
The defense looks stronger now that they have more depth, but so does the midfield. The addition of Danny Cruz ads depth and keeps the midfield interesting in case Andy Najar or Chris Pontius start to slip up. Cruz started all four games on Houston’s run to the MLS Cup. Already mentioned is the defense and the goal keeper. Questions will remain at attack though as United don’t have a great threat behind Salihi and no striker to line up beside him.
The season starts in five days. Get ready.
DC United continue their strong performance at the Carolina Challenge Cup against the Charlseton Battery defeating the Battery 3-1 and winning the “Coffee Pot Cup.” The Coffee Pot Cup is won by the team who wins this match each time they play. It’s a great example of the MLS-USL rivalry that hardly exists anywhere else.
Joe Willis started in net, with an in-experienced outfield consisting of the Supplemental Draft pick Lance Rozeboom and Nick DeLeon and the trialist Ryan Richter. They combined with Brandon McDonald, Emiliano Dudar and Branko Boskovic among others.
Boskovic’s first half in midfield was a definite highlight. His performance created the first goal after only 13 minutes. He played a cute ball over the top of the Battery defense to Maicon Santos who coolly finished past the Charleston keeper.
The Battery equalized in the 19th minute through Jose Cuevas who headed home from point-blank range.
United hit back immediately through Richter who headed past the Battery keeper from a long ball from Jose Burciaga. The scores stayed 2-1 at the break.
Ben Olsen made some changes at the half with Ethan White, Dejan Jakovic, Stephen King, Andrew Dykstra (newly signed, and also a former Battery keeper) and Andy Najar all entered. Despite being up, United couldn’t seem to find the clinching third goal until Christ Pontius and Hamdi Salihi came on with Josh Wolff and Conor Shanosky.
Battery defender Mark Wiltse received a straight red in the 76’. United ended the match quickly after with Najar and Wolff linking up well and Najar sending a cross the Salihi who finished quite easily.
United win 3-1 and win the Carolina Challenge Cup for the third year in a row. Their last match in the tournament is Saturday against the Columbus Crew. This means the regular season is one day closer as United take on Kansas City at the RFK on March 10.
Sorry I was gone all weekend. It was quite busy for me with midterms bearing down on me along with a Carling Cup final for Liverpool. But onto the important things.
United Started off the match under pressure. Dejan Jakovic brought down Patrick Nyarko in the box for a penalty in the 5′. Luckily, Joe Willis, in net for Bill Hamid who is in the US Olympic camp, dove to his right and saved Pavel Pardo’s effort from the spot. United remained under pressure and almost conceded several times to the Fire, but they went into half-time level at 0-0.
The second half brought the breakthrough for United. Ethan White picked out the newly signed Designated Player Hamdi Salihi’s run and put him through on the net. Salihi fired from a tight angle and barely beat Fire keeper, Jay Nolly.
The Fire pressed for the rest of the half, but couldn’t find an equalizer as Willis kept his clean-sheet. The tone has been set for the rest of the Carolina Challenge Cup. United take on the Charleston Battery on Wednesday at 7:15 EST.
In other news, United pick up keeper Andrew Dykstra. The 26 year old comes from the USL Charleston Battery. He played for the Fire before that.
Find the blog on Twitter. @DCUnitedOffside. Also, comment, tell me what you would like to see. I know I don’t have much substance, but I am getting into the swing of things with the MLS instead of EPL. Hopefully the season can make me somewhat interesting.
It’s Thursday everyone. That’s one more day closer to Saturday, when DC United kick off the Carolina Challenge Cup against the Chicago Fire. The MLS regular season kicks off in twelve days when United plays host to Sporting Kansas City. With my first season as a United blogger underway, please let me know what you guys would like to see. I’ve had one recommendation for a post or two about the academy and the youth teams. I’m currently looking into that already. It would also be nice if I could get some infographics or guest posts. If anyone wants to write a guest post, just shoot an email over and we can arrange it. I’m also looking to interview other bloggers about their teams, so if you are a blogger, or know one who would like to communicate, shoot me an email.
Onto news and the such, but mostly such because there isn’t really any news.
Club President and CEO Kevin Payne did an interview for dcunited.com. In the interview, he praised Dwayne De Rosario. Among the things he said where,
That’s the kind of guy you want your young players looking up to and Dwayne’s right, the young players in the room look to him to see what he’s doing and how he’s handling a situation. I think they are going to get the right example a lot more often than not…
I think there are a couple younger guys that get it. Perry Kitchen understands that stuff. In his own way,Christ Pontius understands that stuff. I hope we’re going to see more leadership out of players like Brandon McDonald this year. I think Bill Hamid is really maturing and I think we’re going to see him take a little bit bigger role on the field beyond just making saves. But Dwayne is going to be the leader of that effort, and our locker room is going to be a better place for it.
Payne is optimistic looking into the future.
There’s also little news from the United camp in Charleston, but we will keep you updated if anything happens.
Remember, we’re on Twitter! If you would like a Facebook page, just let me know.
It’s Wednesday and DC United start their season in the Carolina Challenge Cup against the Chicago Fire this Saturday at 5 pm EST. There has been plenty of coverage by the United official website, mostly of their training. Two reasons I’m really excited for this really weekend, my first match as the blogger for the United Offside, and Liverpool FC playing for their first trophy in six years. I also might come across a little biased towards Liverpool, but I’m a blogger so I have an opinion.
But onto DC United. You can view the whole post here.
The highlights from Wednesday’s practice are from a drill where Branko Boskovic and Dwayne De Rosario bossed the midfield. Our midfield should be very strong with year with Chris Pontius, Andy Najar and Perry Kitchen in the side. Hamdi Salihi should also be a strong addition adding a tough attack and midfield. The biggest question seems to be in defense and injury concerns.
Dejan Jakovic could find his way into the back line along with one of several players. It seems Guillherme is impressing on his trial and could be signed at left back.
Please tell me your insight on the starting XI for Saturday. Comment on anything. I know my posts are short, but I don’t have quite as much to work with now.
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I would like to clarify a goal also. I want this Offside page to be the best MLS page. That means we need a quality environment. So please comment and tweet. No opinion is stupid.
DC United kicks off Sunday against the Chicago Fire in the Carolina Challenge Cup.
But the DC United Offside now has a Twitter account so you can get soccer and DC United news from me all of the time.
Go to the link and follow. Tweet at us all you want. We would love to chat.
DC United sign Hamdi Salihi as a designated player. Salihi, an Albanian, comes from Rapid Vienna where he scored 53 goals in 90 appearances for the Austrian club. The 28 year old has been wanted all over the world, with great offers coming from Scotland.
Salihi will wear the number 9 after Charlie Davies failed to make a reasonable impression on the United management.
Ben Olsen spoke about Salihi too, saying, “It’s an important piece for us. We’ve been searching for the right No. 9 for this club for some time, and we think we’ve found it. Very rarely do we sign someone of this quality and this pedigree.”
Knowing little about the guy, he seems to be a good signing for the club who needs a really good striker. He should be able to make an instant impact since Olsen seems so keen of signing the only Albanian in the MLS. Hopefully he can produce quickly.
In other news, DCUnited.com posted about United’s practice today before they take off to the Carolina Challenge Cup tomorrow. Among the things highlighted are attacking full-backs and set pieces. 18-year-old Andy Najar was highlighted as the premier set-piece taker. Emiliano Dudar and Dejan Jakovic were highlighted as performing very well in training.
The Carolina Challenges Cup starts on Saturday, get stoked! I will be back with any important news or in the next couple days.