There was only one player wearing a DC United jersey who looked dangerous, and he was wearing No. 14. Andy Najar attacked with flare and made lots of strong runs to challenge the Seattle Sounders defense.
Before the match, I thought our chances to win were ruined by Ben Olsen's decision to start a healthy Joe Willis ahead of a still-recovering Bill Hamid. And while Willis wasn't necessarily at fault on any of the three goals, so the loss certainly can't be blamed on him, it wasn't a very impressive performance from the rookie goalkeeper either. Willis made all of the saves that were expected of him, but none of the saves that weren't. All this leads us towards the conclusion that Willis is a solid MLS backup, but not yet ready to be an everyday starter.
This was a disappointing match from Dwayne De Rosario, who failed to control the tempo of the game in our favor. This match needed a strong showing from DeRo for United to come out on top, and it didn't happen.
I have a prediction. I predict that yesterday's match will be the last start that Joseph Ngwenya ever makes in MLS. He offered nothing of quality. His one breakaway run resulted in a weak shot in the absolute easiest location for Kasey Keller to make a save - chest height, one step to the left. The fact that Ngwenya has been productive in 2011 in offseason training matches and reserve games just indicates to me that he'd be a solid USL-Pro player. That's the level he should be playing at next year.
All five of United's defensive players made errors that contributed to Sounders goals. Should I name them each individually? Okay! Well on the first goal, United players were on the wrong side of three 50-50 balls, and in the end Brandon McDonald chose the wrong angle in his pursuit of Michael Fucito. A failed clearance from Ethan White was the main culprit on the second goal, but Clyde Simms and Daniel Woolard were both out of position to cover Alvaro Fernandez. Then on the third goal, Perry Kitchen lost track of Fredy Montero, giving the forward a free header while no one picked up Fernandez on the rebound. It was the worst defensive effort we've seen from D.C. in months.
Hopefully this defensive futility in this game was just an aberration. United will have to solve its problems quickly. Fortunately, our good old pals from Chivas USA are visiting on Wednesday night. Three points should be there for the taking. So let's take it.