D.C. United takes on the now construction-worker-less Columbus Crew SC tomorrow night, after our much celebrated and vaunted meetup in Lot 8. Here is what we think, let us know your thoughts in the comments!
October 20, 2012. We all know the LEWIS NEAL! game. That came at the expense of the Columbus Crew. 2 years and 11 months later, we once again enter a home match against the Crew with a ticket to the playoffs in reach. With CCL quarterfinals clinched, United get back on track and secure their spot in the playoffs. DCU 3-1 winners, goals by Espindola and 2 by Rolfe.
At this point, it’s legitimately hard to see what D.C. United side shows up, the one from the first half of the Rapids game after two weeks of rest, or the one from the second that was generally in control for a bit more of the game and had a decent look or two at goal as the half went on. I’m not convinced that second half team shows up this week, but MLS and parity, so who the hell knows. I’ll go 2-1 Crew, with Espindola scoring and D.C. continuing to flounder.
Ryan's spot on that we can't know before kickoff which version of D.C. United will show up Saturday night after the B&RU tailgate. (Which you're coming to, right? Right? Right.) In this fog, I'll take the cop out and predict a 1-1 draw, Fabian Eapindola scoring to cancel out a Kei Kamara goal.
United need a win to secure a playoff spot, and just like 2012, they do just that against the Crew. They don't leave it quite as late, and Lewis Neal doesn't score the crucial go, but United win 2-1, thanks to Fabian Espindola, and Conor Doyle's 85th minute winner.
As has been said, United enter this one looking to clinch a spot in the playoffs, and a win against the Crew will do it just like it did in 2012. We know this team has been frustrating to watch of late--they might come out strong and lock this one up, but they might just as easily scramble for any sort of result. I'll go for optimism and say the desire to secure a playoff berth is enough for the Black-and-Red to grab a 2-1 win, goals from Espindola and Doyle (Doyle!). (ed. note: JINX)
It's difficult to tell whether the relatively dismal offensive performance against Colorado was a product of playing a road game in high altitude where United rarely win. Columbus is dangerous, and I'm concerned about the team being able to keep up if it's a shootout. I think the defense will be in order, and United escapes with a 1-1 draw.
United badly needs a good outing against surging Columbus, and I think they'll be helped by the Crew's naïveté. It won't be easy, though, as the visitors will run the game for much of the first hour. Bill Hamid stands in his head at times before United delivers a sucker punch set piece goal from Bobby Boswell. The Black-and-Red hang on from there to win 1-0.
There is no indication that the doldrums for DC United have ended. Columbus is going to come in fast and confident. We'll be struggling to slow them down to our speed. The turnaround won't come until October. I predict a 1-1 draw, with Arrieta scoring the late equalizer.
The home time has won every game that I have attended at RFK so far this year (DCU and USMNT). So, since I'll be here for this game, I am going to go with a 2-1 win for D.C. United, because they have to win sometime, right?!