United came out and did precisely what a good but undermanned MLS team is supposed to do at home in this league. United took advantage of its opportunities, kept the defensive stupidity to a minimum, and beat a clearly inferior team. Frankly the players looked more relieved than overjoyed and that’s precisely how I feel. Tonight was a reminder of what this team can do, even when it was missing so many players.
- Boy, did this team look well-rested or what? The energy was there. Players were making runs with the kind of speed and precision that we weren’t seeing before.
- Ivan Guerrero looked like an above-average MLS-caliber player out there…. which is such an improvement over what some of the performance recently have looked like. He added a lot defensively, and even added a bit on the attack. Overall, he looks like an enormous upgrade out there over a greenhorn like Thompson. If Guerrero can set that physical, labor-intensive tone that Olsen used to provide, it could help solve some the grit and physicality problems that United seemed to suffer from at times. That could prove crucial down the stretch.
- KC could’ve been in this match if Davy Arnoud and Roger Espinoza just could’ve finished. While the defense was okay, let’s not turn them into world beaters based on one performance. That said, we’ve certainly seen worse out of them.
- Pat Carroll held Claudio Lopez in check all match. I am not prepared to say that it was all Carroll’s work and not a matter of Lopez stinking out the joint, but Lopez was quiet and that was a very, very good thing.
- Fred looked reborn tonight, leading me to believe that he was suffering from a nasty case of fatigue, Rongen was guessing that he ran over 10K tonight, and I am inclined to believe ti.
- I hadn’t watched a DC broadcast on CSN for some time, and especially a home game, and I cannot say enough how good of job Dave Johnson and Thomas Rongen do. The knowledge of the game and teams of course is there, but they also get the balance of cheerleading to honesty just right. They acknowledge when referees calls are correct, even if it goes against United and are even willing to admit when United players commit fouls – something I don’t think Brad Feldman or Dwight Burgess has ever done. Also, the high-def is great, and they do such a great job of capturing the audio of the supporters club.
- Rongen starting talking about this being the first shutout of the year in the 88th minute, which I figured meant United was doomed to surrender a goal. But Lopez missed and Wells didn’t do anything stupid and the shutout finally, finally came.