Hi everybody! I've decided to make my own post-game review after every game going forward. This is my first post on Black and Red United, so just background on me I am a 22 year old college grad currently living in SC. I was born and raised in DC as a United fan, I currently work in youth soccer and I just thought writing would be something cool way to spend my time. Feel free to comment on my posts and I will do my best to interact with you as much as possible.
So here we go!
Post Game Review 4/21/13: 3-2 Loss vs. Philadelphia Union
Explosive. That is the word one could use to describe the first 30 minutes of DC United's 3-2 loss to the Philadelphia Union tonight. Four of the games five goals were scored in the small window. The excitement of all the goals had to have pleased the 12,000 plus onlookers at RFK. DC got behind early and were not able to score the goals necessary to get the win or tie in the game, a fate that could describe the team's entire 2013 season thus far.
Philadelphia scores two in the first 11 minutes
When you are a DC United squad who has scored two goals in your first six games this has to be the worst possible start you could have in the match. Jack McInerney's first goal of the match came directly off an intercepted pass from Dejan Jakovic into the middle of the pitch in the seventh minute. A team that has such a hard time scoring cannot afford to have to make up for such a crucial error from the onset of the match. And if one mistake wasn't enough, Conor Casey was able to score just four minutes later off of a very simple build-up in which Danny Cruz was able to take the ball up the right wing and make a simple centering pass on the pitch to Casey who was able to get a shot off thru United's centerbacks and Bill Hamid was not able to get enough of a hand on the shot to keep it out of the back of the net.
DC gets one back
After such a poor defensive start for United, their offense was able to make up for it by scoring their third goal of the season. After a poor free kick from midfield by Chris Pontius, Brandon McDonald was able to make a beautiful over the top pass to Dwayne De Rosario who then picked up his head and found a streaking Perry Kitchen coming from his CDM position who was able to get the ball past the Union's keeper.
McInerney says "Not so fast," scores their third goal of the first 30 minutes
Philadelphia has had trouble playing with leads this season, but tonight was an exception when momentum was returning to United they refused to give in. Philadelphia has a knack for scoring goals on set pieces off of long throw-ins deep in their opponents territory and unfortunately DC was unable to stop it as well. This time McInerney was the benefactor of the set piece and he was able to score his second goal of the night, and sixth of the season putting him in the league lead.
Pajoy helps himself
DC fans have been speculating on different ways to get some offense going after the slow start this season. Some have suggested that taking Pajoy out of the lineup may lead to greater offensive output for the team. So Pajoy, scoring on a header off a ball crossed in by Daniel Woolard just after half time, may have given himself more time in the starting eleven for DC going forward this season.
Unable to equalize
The last 43 minutes of play plus stoppage time after the Pajoy goal led to chances for each team, but neither team was able to capitalize on United's more aggressive approach in order to try and tie the score for the first time since the sixth minute. United was able to match their goal scoring output from the first six games in this game, but conceding three goals early put them too far behind to catch up.
Moving Forward (next game 4/27 at Columbus Crew)
After United's first 2 goal game of the year, some things are clear about our style of play with De Rosario healthy.
- Our left and right backs will be playing up on the wings in order to free up space for our outside midfielders to cross the ball into the box, or to cross the ball themselves. We had 24 open play crosses tonight where Philadelphia had only 7.
- De Rosario is our only real offensive presence in the middle of the field
- Our centerbacks need to limit their mistakes or they will concede tons of goals
This style can work, but my only question is why play three players in the center of midfield (De Rosario, Kitchen and Saragosa/Agosto) if our goal is not to utilize all three? If we are looking to play the ball on the wings, why not play another striker, bolster our attack and continue to use the wings as the focal point of our attack?
On a positive note Hamid continues to impress me, I watched Robles of the Red Bulls play earlier today and Hamid is a level above him.
Thanks for whoever reads this post, I'm willing to change what I put in this moving forward. Go United!!