All right, the less said about last weekend’s game, the better. Was it the first D.C. United game I’ve ever left early? Maybe. Should we dwell? Definitely not.
Instead, let’s focus on tomorrow’s game, which will totally not be a horrific loss! Lol jk, it’s going to suck.
Donald Wine II
This homestand has been terrible for the Black-and-Red, with five goals conceded and zero goals scored (only three shots on goal during that time frame). We now have to take on the Fire, with Bastian Schweinsteiger, without Luciano Acosta. Who takes on that challenge to control the midfield of Schweinsteiger, Dax McCarty and/or Juninho? Also, the team needs to be better about shooting the puck and putting it on frame. You can’t score without shooting, and Own Goal ain’t walking through that door. Bill Hamid will stand on his head again, but I think in the end we emerge from this homestand with only one point. Patrick Mullins finally breaks through and poaches a goal, but Chicago gets one as well and it’s a 1-1 draw.
Nope. I'm not going to predict this impending disaster. No! You can't make me write about my thinking that United will go oh-for-the homestand with another L on the weekend. I won't do it. I won't write about Dax McCarty assisting on a David Accam goal to put Chicago ahead early. I can't be forced to tell you that I think United actually shows some life, even without the suspended Luciano Acosta and gets on the board through Patrick Mullins only to give up another set piece goal. You can't make me. I'm not going to do it. Nein. Nyet. Non. NO.
With a currently anemic offense and defense prone to mistakes, United is not in a good position at the moment. That combined with the fact that the Chicago Fire are red hot makes the task doubly hard. Could United find some of its late-season magic and pull out a win? Sure, they could, but I don't think it is going to happen this week. Nemanja Nikolic is on too much fire to not score at least one, and Bastian Schweinsteiger will probably score another to beat United 2-0.
Who's scored the most goals in the East thus far? The Fire. Who's scored the fewest in the East? D.C., who have also given up the most in the East thus far. And (sigh) Chris Korb will probably start since David Accam will play and they'll need some veteran guile, Nemanja Nikolic faces presumably Steve Birnbaum and Bobby Boswell, who again, should not be playing. And you'll have Dax, Juninho, and Schweinsteiger in a midfield against Ian Harkes, Marcelo Sarvas, and Jared Jeffrey? OK. 2-0 Fire, because the Fire's midweek game doesn't make the result worse.
Bad news: Chicago is in form, and they have the league's golden boot leader in Nemanja Nikolic. United won't have Lucho Acosta and has been awful in two straight games.
Good news: Chicago's road record is poor this year (0W-2D-3L, and a -7 goal difference), and Veljko Paunovic's overall road record with the Fire is 1W-4D-17L, 21 goals for and 49 (that's forty nine) goals against. And hey, they played starters mid-week, so DCU should be fresher.
However, it's impossible for me to look at a Lucho-free United and predict a win right now. D.C. starts well enough and gets out in front via Patrick Mullins (who has a mismatch in the air against both normal starting center backs), but before halftime they give the lead away by failing to mark Nikolic. The second half is kind of a repeat: a Steve Birnbaum-inspired free kick scramble sees Marcelo Sarvas notch a goal, but David Accam breaks out to score a great individual goal. 2-2.
The only thing that D.C. United has going for them in this match is the fact that the Chicago Fire played a midweek match with nearly their whole first team. That said, United is not full strength, and Nemanja Nikolic has gone thermonuclear with nine goals over his last seven matches, including six over his last four. I don't see DCU having the offense to match the Fire, and Chicago walks out a 2-1 winner after Patrick Mullins prods home a late consolation goal.
Y’all, it’s not happening. I’m sick of predicting that DCU will find a way to not be terrible. They are going to keep doing this to us, and I have accepted that. Bastian Schweinsteiger will score tomorrow and I might not even be that upset about it. The Black-and-Red will get one goal, I guess, but the Fire will bag another and end things 2-1 for the visitors. Buy another beer, folks, because things are ugly.
Are you feeling more optimistic than we are? Let us know in the comments, but first it’s your silly poll of the week:
Let’s invent a new D.C. United chant to the tune of the Chicago Fire’s "FIIIIYUUUUUR!"—which one word should we chant over and over again?
This poll is closed