Do you guys remember this story? The one about how D.C. United has two defenders in Perry Kitchen and Ethan White who could be future members of the U.S. National Team? A number that is now three with the leadership of Brandon McDonald. Four if you add in Dejan Jakovic and his own respective country. Five if you want to throw a goalkeeper in there too with Bill Hamid.
Yeah, they're not quite there yet.
That's become evident this week. And when you consider that three of these young potential stars were out injured or suspended for today's loss to the Columbus Crew, you realize that the result should not have been surprising. But you should also realize that our defense's best days are still ahead of it.
There were always going to be letdowns along the way for this young team. Those are just amplified now towards the end of the season. And the season isn't over yet, by the way, no matter how bad this week feels. United still has an outside chance of making the playoffs. Even though the number of points they'll need to earn in their last four games isn't much short of 12 at this point. They could still make it. But if they don't, we still have a lot to look forward to.
Full recap here. Player ratings below.
I remember a game back in July 2009 in which Bryan Namoff did what Daniel Woolard did today. He scored a goal for both teams. Namoff's was way cooler though. He gave up an own goal early in the game against the Colorado Rapids, and then he actually gave United the lead later in the game with a diving header goal to make it 2-1. Woolard, on the other hand, put United in front 1-0 late in the second half by finishing off a DeRo free kick with a clean left-footed one-time shot, but then gave back a goal early in the second half with a poor clearance into Hamid's net. Defenders don't usually want to be in the headlines for their teams. Woolard definitely was tonight.
United didn't get enough production out of the forwards tonight. Charlie Davies proved once again that he doesn't have much to offer without some good service and a competent partner. Well Joseph Ngwenya wasn't a competent partner today (or at any point in 2011).
So where were Santino Quaranta and Marc Burch during the Columbus go-ahead goal that saw Sebastian Miranda run free down the right wing? It's hard to say. They may have well been playing backgammon in the corner - that's how much effect they had on the play. To his credit, at least Clyde Simms was in the picture. Yeah, that was him running to the side of Eddie Gaven rather than, you know, marking him.