Washington D.C. -- With a pivotal three points available for the two playoff hopefuls, Chivas came out on top with a dominating performance on the road against D.C. United. United 'keeper Milos Kocic scored an own goal in the first half, and Jesus Padilla added the insurance goal for the Goats early in the second half.
United midfielder Ben Olsen was
sent off in the 66th minute, compounding a miserable night for United
in front of 24,175 at home. With the loss, United's slim chances of
making the playoffs became even more slim, as they will likely need to
pick up all dix points out of their last two games, in addition to
receiving help from other sides.
With their victory, Chivas
moved to 41 points from 26 games, and left themselves in prime position
to secure their place in postseason action.
game began awkwardly for United, who are accustomed to dominating
possession and chances at home. Roles were reversed for the opening
stages of the match, as Chivas enjoyed more of the possession, and used
it to create some dangerous scoring chances.
United were to
blame for some of the chances conceded early on. Several times, a lack
of communication between the United back line gifted Chivas possession,
but the Goats lacked the decisive final ball to make United pay for
Justin Braun had the first golden chance of the
match, as a perfectly weighted throughball from Sacha Kljestan reached
Braun in the box. From a tight angle Braun only managed to put his shot
into the side netting, as Milos Kocic had the angles covered.
had another decent opportunity minutes later, again courtesy of
Kljestan. After making room for himself outside of the box, Kljestan
sent a cross towards Braun at the back post. Braun beat Marc Burch to
the header, but Kocic was able to deny Braun with his feet.
ebb and flow of the match continued to favor Chivas, as United could
not manage to carve out any genuine chances. Dejan Jakovic had an
opportunity with a header from a Clyde Simms cross was looped easily
into the awaiting hands of Zach Thornton.
Chivas then had a
flurry of chances that led to the opening goal in the 32nd minute. Braun
hit the crossbar with a left footed shot from distance, as Kocic looked
to have been beaten.
Moments later, Kljestan fed a ball into
the box for striker Maicon Santos. Santos held off a defender, before
turning and taking a quick shot that hit the near post. The ball
rebounded off the back of the diving Kocic, with the ball eventually
bouncing back over the line, as Kocic was credited with an own goal.
goal failed to spark United into action, as Chivas continued to control
the pace of the game. In what seemed to be a desperate move to energize the team, United coach Tom Soehn brought on Jaime Moreno for
Christian Gomez, as United's season seemed to be slipping away.
had one final chance in the half, but his free kick from thirty yards
out deflected off of a teammate, and went out for a goal kick.
started off the second half brightly, as the addition of Fred at
halftime seemed to re-energize the whole team. Lawson Vaughn nearly snuck
in a cross at the near post before Thornton recovered, and then
Quaranta just missed out on a header from a Fred cross.
fell apart from there for United, as they conceded a second goal to the
Goats in the 53rd minute. Jonathan Bornstein took a free kick from
midfield, which found Jesus Padilla in the box. The ball took a bounce
of Burch and fell to Padilla, who was able to power his shot past Kocic
from eight yards out, as Chivas went up 2-0.
Soehn took his last
roll of the dice minutes later, as he brought on Luciano Emilio for
Burch in attempt to change the fortunes of the team.
struck in the 66th minute for United, as Ben Olsen was sent off with a
straight red card. After being pushed to the ground by Yamith Cuesta,
Olsen retaliated by kicking the ball into the back of Cuesta, which
earned him a straight red from referee Kevin Stott. And with the
disappearance of Olsen, United's chances of making the playoffs seemed
to disappear as well.
Even though United had to play down, they
had to push forward for a chance to earn something from the match,
which left them vulnerable to the counter attack. However, Chivas were
not too worried about scoring another goal, and rarely asked any
questions out of Kocic.
D.C. finally had a couple of decent
chances in the final ten minutes, but they failed to make their chances
count. Rookie Chris Pontius made a counter attack of his own, making
his way into the Chivas half from deep in his own side. He then fed the
ball out wide for Quaranta, but the winger's shot from outside the box
was well over the bar.
Quaranta then fed Emilio in the box in
the 82nd minute. Emilio made a nice turn on the ball, giving him an
opening that allowed him the opportunity to get a shot off. But his
left footed effort from eight yards out was well off, frustrating fans
and teammates alike.
Quaranta had one final chance for United,
but his well-driven shot bounced just wide of the post. Chivas had on the
other end a couple of counter attacking options, but after three
minutes of stoppage time, the game ended in a 2-0 victory for Chivas.
Steven Streff, Goal.com
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