Some may blame the schedule, some may blame the referees, but the D.C. United players have no one to blame but themselves.
Two road losses in a row? That's not good. What's worse is that United still only has road wins against teams that are almost already out of playoff contention. The Columbus Crew aren't exactly world beaters, but they were United beaters on Saturday night.
So let's take a look around the web to see what other media members have to say about this disappointing loss for D.C. United.
What they're saying:
Goff: In the wake of a miserable performance last weekend, D.C. United Coach Ben Olsen was looking for a ferocious response Saturday night. What he received, instead, was a tame, uninspiring display until the final desperate moments, resulting in a third defeat in four matches and a fall into fourth place in MLS’s Eastern Conference.
Chamberlain: Chris Birchall scored by latching on to a through ball along the left channel from Jairo Arrieta. With Joe Willis rushing out to cut down the angle, the former Los Angeles Galaxy player beat the United keeper low to Willis' right for the only goal of the game.
Salazar: Head Coach Ben Olsen called his team ‘unlucky’ not to have earned a draw. The young coach seldom lauded his group during the May winning streak that saw D.C. shoot up the standings, and he wasn’t about to condemn them on Saturday night. Instead, Olsen had already turned his attention to August 4 - when his team will get another shot at the Crew. "It’s not the end of the world," Olsen said. "We’ll get back at it. We have a week where we will play Paris St. Germain, and use that as a good exercise. Then we’ll try and get our revenge against Columbus."
Webb: Head coach Ben Olsen made five changes to the lineup coming off their 4-0 loss in Houston last weekend. The changes however had little effect on the team and they let a poor Columbus side take the three points at home with minimal effort.
and a pissed off BDR: MLS front-loaded United's schedule, United rounded into form, MLS gave them a fucking month off and then two road games (plus Najar is away at the motherfuckingly stupidass motherfucking Olympics, of which I will watch not a motherfucking second) and these are like preseason games re: chemistry, see lack thereof.
What I'm saying:
The schedule is odd. There's no doubt about it. After six matches in the month of May, we played only five matches in the months of June and July combined. We follow that up with six matches in August. If that makes sense to you, then you're either crazy, or you work for MLS.
But the schedule being odd doesn't necessarily mean we're at a disadvantage. Most of our opponents have similarly odd schedules. Our opponent on Saturday night had a similar number of player absences to deal with us as well. And both teams even had an arguably good goal called back for offside.
This time, we have no one else to blame for ourselves.