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Blog Match Review

Match Report: DC 3-1 CLB

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Match Report

In a game where DC United managed to have a break of more than a few days, it was certainly going to be interesting to see how it unfolded. DC have been on a run of a game every 3-4 days and by the Minnesota match, those legs were tiring. It was no wonder we were so defensive in that 2nd half. This game though, it was a time where we had recharged the batteries, and were able to go for longer periods of attacking play.

The 1st half of this game is probably going to be talked about for a while. The reason being is the referee, the 1st moment was in the 22nd minute when Pedro Santos scored. In the build up, two things happened. One, in the build up to the play, Zardes went in with his foot high on Brillant, the referee appears to play advantage, however the ball fell to Jara. Jara then played it towards Acosta, and this is part two, Acosta was then impeded by both Will Trapp and the Referee Ted Funkel. This meant the ball was lost and won by Columbus. Trapp plays it down the right to Santos who puts it in the back of the net. The referee then goes back to check it and awards the free kick to DC United.

Columbus, who were obviously incensed by the decision, moments later give away a free kick, by Will Trapp who then receives a yellow card. That free kick though, was whipped in by Rooney, it falls to Jara who chests it down, tries to shoot but fails, it falls to Acosta who sweetly strikes it with his left into the back of the net. 1-0 DC.

After nothing more than just a series of fouls by both sides, the 2nd big moment came in added time of the 1st half. Acosta on the edge of the box looks to feed through to Rooney, only for that man again, Will Trapp to handle it. It does look like he tries to get out of the way of it but it’s a clear handball, however this was only given once the referee had consulted VAR. Rooney steps up and slots the penalty into the top corner.

2nd half kicks off, and the 1st noteworthy action came in the 52nd minute. Zardes through on goal but big Bill Hamid coming up with the save.

The next noteworthy moment came in the 61st minute. Columbus moving the ball down their left side, Jara though, quick as you like wins the ball on the halfway line, sprints down the wing. Arriola keeping track with him, Jara enters the box and cheekily back heels it leaving the Crew defenders for dead. Arriola slots it him into the bottom left corner. Great finish and goal all round.

After a couple of subs happened for the Crew, they get a corner in the 75th minute. Bill Hamid, who doesn’t make a huge amount of mistakes but when he does, he does this….

That’s all that it was for the game. DC managed to see out the rest of the game and it finished 3-1.

Man of the Match

This man was outstanding down the right flank. Setting up a goal for Arriola, I’m not sure we can count the 1st goal, even though he did get the final touch.

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Match Review

Match Report: CLB 0-1 DCU

Match Statistics

Match Report

After the dismal performance against NYCFC, DC needed to turn it around, and the short amount of time between the games meant that the team didn’t have to needlessly focus too much on the past, and were able to focus on the future. I said after the last match that things needed changing up, and the fact that we lacked pace going forward, Ben Olsen was obviously listening. The teamsheet that was sent out was a 4-2-3-1 with Birnbaum slotting in at left back, but it appeared that we were playing a 3-4-2-1. Reason for the apparent Birnbaum at left back or the 3 CB’s was that Donovan Pines returned to the starting lineup. And boy did he have a match. He was solid, towering above the Crew and sweeping up a lot of balls that managed to work their way through.

1st half wise we were the better side, we had lots of play going forward and looked like we could score multiple goals. Referee was laying down the law early doors though, giving Birnbaum a yellow card for a challenge after 3 minutes had gone. Play was mostly in the final 3rd of Columbus’ half, with great one twos between Arriola, Acosta, Rooney and Rodriguez. They seem to be gelling well together and I would love to see the same going forward into further matches.

The moment of the game came in the 25th minute when Josh Williams brought down Arriola on the edge of the 18 yard box. A foul which he was booked for. Well, I’ll show what happened next.

Wayne Rooney doing what he does best, putting the ball in the back of the net. Some very clever thinking from Wazza on this, I see a lot of players who would have gone for the over the wall attempt and miss, he puts around the wall, ball bounces right by the keeper which makes it difficult and gets it in with plenty of pace too.

After that Columbus decided to go on the offensive and getting Hamid to pull out some amazing saves. They took another 3 attempts at goal, with Hamid needed to make 2 saves.

2nd half however was a different story, a bit one-sided really. Columbus were a huge threat and had identified that our left side was our weaker area. What they didn’t account for was the towering CB’s who dealt with 21 crosses, and only lost 3. That’s a hell of a lot in the 2nd half and just shows how much pressure we were under. Great defensive qualities and we could do with that each and every game. Columbus again made Hamid work too with 2 shots on target and him coming to deal with the crosses. What worked brilliantly for DC towards the end of the game was bringing on Amarikwa. In those final few minutes he controlled possession and used up valuable time doing so. Even Arriola had the last say in the game with Zack Steffen making a save from his effort, you could tell it was a tired attempt though as it trickled towards him.

After that the referee blew the final whistle. The referee himself had some really good points, one in particular for identifying that Hector Jimenez diving in the penalty box and giving him a yellow card for doing so. I’ve seen countless times a ref has not given a penalty for the same thing and not done anything about it. This needs to be more consistent, and not just for fouls in the box but wherever on the pitch.

Man of the Match

For me it has to go to Donovan Pines, he was the official MotM, and I totally agree. For someone who has made his 2nd start in MLS, he looked incredibly comfortable, I’d love to see him start more games and be an integral part of the backline for years to come. He could become a very good player, not just for DC, but for the USMNT.

Do you agree with my thoughts, or have anything to comment, drop that below or send me a tweet. I look forward to debating it with you!