Match Review

Match Report: MIN 1-0 DCU

Match Statistics

Match Report

DC were looking to keep there unbeaten Road record intact today, the only side in MLS with that record. With it being the 6th game in 21 days, Ben Olsen picked the same players as the previous match against Columbus, with only a change in positioning, Arriola dropping to LWB and Rodriguez moving in to a role behind Rooney.

The game started well for DC, seeing plenty of the ball and passing the ball quickly. And in the 21st minute, DC had the ball in the net, only for it be ruled out for a foul by Brillant on Mannone. Here is the play, decide for yourself whether it should have been a goal or not.

Pines continued his great form and had Angelo Rodriguez in his pocket for the entire 1st half, and with that the 1st hald ended 0-0.

With the 2nd half, it was the same story as the game as Columbus Crew. DC seemed happy to soak up pressure, and try to hit on the counter. Only a couple of problems with that for DC, one, we lack pace to hit on the counter, and two, we only had Wayne Rooney up top, and sometimes not even that so we lost the ball and invited even more pressure. Eventually, all that pressure told. A cross by Matinere was flicked in by Angelo Rodriguez, the one time Pines had lost him and made him pay. DC tried to search for an equalizer by bringing on Stieber and Amarikwa. As much as they tried, they couldn’t find a way through. It finished 1-0, the Loons getting their 1st victory at Allianz Field, and DC losing their 1st game on the road.

Other noteworthy happenings from the game, Lucho decided to have an on-field argument with Arriola, Hamid doing what he does best, making big saves and Pines being awesome again. I also had a nice Pizza too which was an exciting part of the 2nd half.

Man of the Match

My man of the match for DC United would be Donovan Pines, he played well, and just one momentary lapse cost us the game. Other good performances I would say were Hamid with his saves, Arriola stepping up and playing well in a position that he is unfamiliar with.

Keep an eye out for the podcast coming up soon.

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!

Match Review

Match Report: DCU 0-2 NYCFC

Match Stats

Match Report

As you can see, the stats above really do tell a story. NYCFC really dominated the game on paper, and after watching it, it was on the pitch too. The new jersey was probably the best thing about DCU on the pitch. We lacked creativity, pace and any passion. It doesn’t help with the fact we are missing some players, especially Mora, who has been missing since he broke his jaw. We need to really find someone who can fill that gap. We have Akeem Ward as full back, but Olsen doesn’t seem to want to play him. He insists on playing Arriola at FB, which is not where he should be playing. He is an attacker and has that pace we sorely missed. I do feel though we did play better at 343, and this is something that we could do to combat the missing FB.

The 1st half was abysmal, NYCFC were 1st to everything, they had a good couple of efforts on goal, Mitrita looked like a promising player, however, he did dive and that went unpunished. That I cannot forgive, not just from Mitrita, but the ref. This is where VAR should be allowed to intervene as they can see the replay and have the player punished there and then.

After going 0-1 down, at the end of the half, really when we just wanted to get back to the dressing room, Jara made a very silly mistake to give away a penalty, shoving Tinnerholm to the ground inside the box. Jara, despite being one of our best players so far this season, I have noticed he does giveaway or has a tendency to be rash in his decision making. We didn’t concede from the penalty, therefore getting away with it, we won’t be so lucky on other occasions.

2nd half wasn’t much better either, still no pace, players looked like they were trying to take NYC players on by walking around them. I don’t know what was happening but it looked like they were tired. 3 games in 8 days is a lot, especially with the travel, but this is where having good squad depth pays off. There were a couple of good things that did come from the 2nd half though, not counting the full time whistle, we switched to 3-4-3, and that looked like we had better pace, a bit livelier going forward, Stieber came on and looked like he could make a difference and Griffin Yow, the 16 year old homegrown starlet made his debut, albeit for a few minutes, but great to see.

Final Thoughts

Going into the on the road game against the Crew, I’d like to see us go with 3-4-3, drop Acosta as he really isn’t being effective, and have a front three of Titi, Rooney & Arriola. I’m going to try it on FM and see how it goes. Let’s hope our Road form keeps us going. And lastly, somehow, we are still top of the Eastern Conference.


Podcast Episode 4

Well, this week’s podcast is a bit of a special one, I have a guest this week. So click the link below if you haven’t listened before. Subscribe if you like it, donate if you loved it as that will allow me to get better microphones, an actual intro and outro and improve the website even more. Let me know your comments too by tweeting me @dcunitedkingdom or posting in the comment section below.

Podcast – Anchor

Match Preview

Match Preview: Orl vs DCU

Team News

Good news from DCU, there is no new team news. So we should be expecting our strongest lineup again with the trip to Orlando. This will be Wayne Rooney’s real first long trip in MLS. As I’ve said before, I don’t think it’ll have a huge effect on him, especially this one as there is no time difference or anything.

Expect to see the likes of Lucho, Arriola, Hamid all starting. Orlando will be on a high after their victory over NYRB (LOL), and hopefully we can dampen that. With a great defence so far this season, they will be properly tested with the likes of Dwyer and Nani. Eyes up Birnbaum & Brillant.

Key Stats

Looking over the Head to Head record between these two, overall it’s even, however, when you look deeper into the records, usually the home side comes out on top. DCU have scored less than a goal a game in Orlando, and they’ll need to really up it if they are to come out victorious. Rooney has yet to play there so this could be where the tide changes.

The last time this fixture was played was the match opener last year. That ended in a tie very cruelly for DC. I remember staying up to watch it and seeing that goal go in at the last minute was brutal. Revenge was sweet later on in the season though.

Lineup Prediction

Well, I think you know how it’s going down.

Now news is good news for DC United.

Scoreline Prediction

I’ve asked about and heard some predictions already, I don’t think it’s going to be the highest scoring of games, and I think we will continue the shutouts, so I’m going for 2-0. I think Rooney will bag himself a goal alongside Acosta. Lucho seems to like this fixture quite a lot and hopefully he will get himself on the scorers list, if not for himself, but for my Fantasy Team =D.

Where to Watch (UK)

In the UK this game will be shown live on Sky Sports Football and Sky Sports Mix from 23:45 GMT.

Blog Match Review

Match Report: DCU 5-0 RSL

Just going to open with I was unfortunate to not be well enough to watch the game, but I have caught up on the highlights.

DC United Lineup

Courtesy of @dcunited twitter

Match Statistics

22Shots on Goal4
7Shots on Target2
87%Passing Accuracy81%
4Chances Created1
3Yellow Cards2
0Red Cards2

From watching the highlights, it certainly looked one sided. From the midfield to the forwards, they all looked comfortable on the ball, passing well, pressing high up the pitch like they did against Atlanta United, which led to one of Rooney’s goals. Coupled with the fact that RSL had two players sent off, it was pretty much a given that DCU were going to win this match. Because I’ve been unable to watch the game and give you my thoughts, I’m going to bring some thoughts from around the web.’s player notes

  • Wayne Rooney scored a penalty kick goal in the 34th minute after Paul Arriola drew a foul in the box. It was his first goal of the 2019 MLS Season.
  • Rooney scored a second goal in the 41st minute. It was his fifth multi-goal performance in 23 regular season games for the Black-and-Red.. 
  • Leonardo Jara assisted Rooney’s second goal. It was his first assist in MLS and with United. 
  • Wayne Rooney scored a third goal in the 65th minute to record his first hat-trick for the Black-and-Red.
  • Lucas Rodríguez scored in the 76th minute. It was his first career goal for United.
  • Ulises Segura scored his first goal of the 2019 season in the 80th minute.
  • Júnior Moreno assisted on two goals in the win; he now leads United with three assists. 
  • Goalkeeper Bill Hamid recorded his third straight clean sheet in the win; his 57th career shutout.
  • RSL goalkeeper Nick Rimando played his final regular season match in D.C., where he starred for United from 2002-2006.

Match reports from around the web

Black And Red United

BBC Sport

Match Clips

Blog Match Preview

Roundup of this week’s previews & news

DC United to host Real Betis in May –

Chris Durkin called up to USMNT U20’s –

Match Preview –

Match Preview

Match Preview: DCU vs RSL

Team News

For the 3rd game running, no new team news for DCU. This is great as it means Ben Olsen can put out a consistent lineup. From a backline point of view, this is awesome as so far there has not been a goal conceded in 180 minutes, and with a MOTM performance last week, Hamid will be pleased to see this. Up top is where, if anything, would change. Arriola has been consistent in his direct running and picking out key passes, I just worry for Rodriguez as he hasn’t had an impact as much, but game time will give him that. I think the lineup will stay the same as the previous two games however.

Key Stats

Both sides unbeaten in their 1st 2 games of the season, with RSL tieing with Houston Dynamo in the first match away and beating Vancouver Whitecaps last week.

In this exact fixture, there have been 10 games. DC winning 6, RSL once and 3 ties. Overall scoreline has been DCU 23-10 RSL. The biggest scoreline being back in 2015 when it was DC 6-4 RSL. RSL taking a 2 goal lead only for it to go to 4-2, then bringing it back to 4-4 and then conceding another 2. Hopefully it will be as good as that, but not maybe for the nerves.

Key Players

Well, since it’s hopefully going to be a consistent lineup, let’s look at RSL. It’s a farewell for former DCU keeper Nick Rimando as he is in his last season before retiring, so hopefully the DCU fans will give him a warm send off, just hope the players don’t do the same.

Baird will be looking to add to his assist that he got in the 1st game. And Rusnak will be looking to make it 3 games and 3 goals. Hopefully DCU will be able to mark them out of the game and nullify any potential goal scoring threats.

Lineup Prediction

Need I say any more

Consistency is key

Scoreline Prediction

I think as long as DCU can keep the RSL attack out, I feel there will be a few goals in this tie. Hopefully Rooney can get his season underway and I feel Arriola & Acosta can get themselves a goal each too. I’m going for 3-0 for this.

Where to watch

This match is available through FreeSports this week. But as I can’t get that, I’ll be streaming through my Bet365 account as they show all the MLS matches, just without commentary or good high quality.


DC United statement in regards to FloSports

For all of you reading this who aren’t from Washington D.C, you may not be aware of the broadcasting issues that happened for the match at the weekend. I was lucky enough to be able to watch it on Sky Sports and have uninterrupted viewing. For those who were watching it on FloSports, well, they might as well have not bothered. Technical issues after technical issues, some of which got better in the 2nd half, it’s something which should never have happened in the 1st place. So much so, it’s brought out the Chairmen who have come out with a statement, and it reads…

Image Credit: @dcunited Twitter Account

What do you make of this? Were you one of the people affected? I’d love to hear from you if so.

Also, I just want to shout out to all the pubs and bars who went the extra mile, like Across The Pond who were giving away free drinks because of the issues. It wasn’t their problem but they more than made up for it. Customer service like that deserves to be noticed! Vamos United!