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DCU-Houston, the Aftermath (Sort Of)

D.C. United's first shutout in league play! See, that wasn't so difficult. And they didn't even need to use any reserves to pull it off.

Player Ratings: Perfect 10s for everyone.

But seriously.....

The teams and league today will discuss possible make-up dates. DCU Prez Kevin Payne mentioned the week of the All-Star Game in late July and a pair of Wednesdays in early September.

For my complete report from soggy RFK, click here.

If you were at the match, please share your stormy experiences in the comments section.

By Steve Goff  |  June 5, 2008; 12:43 AM ET
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Next: Morning Kickaround

Comments

Howzabout doubling that home SuperLiga match v the Dynamo in July as a league match too?

Posted by: delantero | June 5, 2008 1:16 AM | Report abuse

The rain right before they called the game was incredible. I don't think I've ever been in rain quite that heavy.

From the game itself, Wreibel proved he is just a punk with some cheap shots right in front of me.

Posted by: John | June 5, 2008 1:17 AM | Report abuse

I felt mother nature's wrath like that just one other time in my life, at MLS Cup '96. That's the only thing I can compare it to. It was glorious to actually FEEL that once more, if only for a few minutes (in '96 it never did let up).

I was worried that if they restarted the game my DVR would cut off before the end. It worked out though. We got priceless filler from Il Bruce in studio. The timing on THAT one could not have been better, with "Championship Week" in full swing as well as the big news of a former player of his getting a big transfer deal (let's not leave out the unprecedented 3 game swing the USMNT is in the midst of). Just priceless stories and utterly unique insights - the perfect "Bonus Materials" to this week's championship box set.

In the history of the club rain usually portends good things. I'm sad that United didn't get to play Houston when it appeared factors were in their favor (Waibel, Robinson, AND Ching out??), but I'm getting a really good sense of an impending upswing for the Black and Red. It may be a total hunch, but I'm calling it now - we're back.

Posted by: spectre | June 5, 2008 1:54 AM | Report abuse

"Puddles were not limited to the field. In the rowdy seating area on the east end, where supporters from the Screaming Eagles and Barra Brava braved the conditions throughout most of the delays, water accumulated in the giant drum being held by a diehard fan. Undeterred, he kept pounding away.

The rain eased from heavy to steady, allowing the field to drain a bit, but thunder and lightning kept everyone under shelter. The supporters groups provided entertainment by parading around the concourse with drums and song."

Nice!

Posted by: Joe S. | June 5, 2008 3:42 AM | Report abuse

Payne is a wash out.

Posted by: It'sPouring | June 5, 2008 6:19 AM | Report abuse

That had to be one of the greatest Barra Brava drum circles ever!

Posted by: DirtyHarry | June 5, 2008 6:45 AM | Report abuse

Howzabout doubling that home SuperLiga match v the Dynamo in July as a league match too?

Posted by: delantero | June 5, 2008 1:16 AM

This idea actually makes a lot of sense, if both teams are willing to accept it. It will have to be a rescheduled home match for DC, just as it is in the Superliga, and both teams will have come off playing two earlier home matches that week. This proposal has merits, especially if both teams consider the headaches of rescheduling another match during a busy fall when both teams are in Champions League group play.

The only downside: the DCU front office loses a home match and all the revenue from that match.

Posted by: J | June 5, 2008 7:16 AM | Report abuse

Of course, great article about the game, Goff, but why is the only picture of the fans a picture of us leaving? Would have been nice to see a picture of the fans sticking it out in the rain rather a than bailing.

Posted by: Rex North | June 5, 2008 7:27 AM | Report abuse

How fitting was it that the night before was the 1997 water logged MLS Cup on TV only to be followed by an EVEN MORE WATER LOGGED field.

As much as I hate missing a game night - there was no way that could have been a serious match at any point last night. I'm sure the field is still draining at this point.

Posted by: Virginia Blue Blood | June 5, 2008 7:28 AM | Report abuse

Goff does it all but I'm pretty sure he doesn't take pictures and edits the sports page.

Posted by: DirtyHarry | June 5, 2008 7:29 AM | Report abuse

I want to give a shout-out to the intrepid vendor who answered the "Where is the beer man?" chant about 20 minutes into the downpour. Sure, he was only selling Miller Lite, but it's one of the few beers available at RFK that doesn't suffer from--and might even benefit from--a little rainwater.

And aluminum cans in that electrical storm? He was a veritable Gunga Din.

Posted by: Stevan in Gaithersburg | June 5, 2008 7:58 AM | Report abuse

I think the week of the All Star game should be the best shot for rescheduling or some manner of counting the SuperLiga fixture for both competitions since it's already a Home Match for United.

It's just ugly that this happened to the two teams with the busiest fixture list in the league.

Chunking it between the Earthquakes and FC Dallas games in the fall would cause DC to have 15 matches in 53 days. Two games every week except from one from September to the end of October. That's unfortunate.

Posted by: Virginia Blue Blood | June 5, 2008 8:06 AM | Report abuse

VBB, counting the Superliga match fixture for both competitions is an interesting adea. Has anything like that ever been done, in MLS or elsewhere?

Posted by: Ron | June 5, 2008 8:18 AM | Report abuse

Don't have a story, but that was one of the heaviest downpours I've experienced in DC.

Here's a picture I took when the rain was just cranking up:

http://www.pbase.com/mmathai/image/98163557/original.jpg

Posted by: Matt Mathai | June 5, 2008 8:23 AM | Report abuse

the close up of the bass drum on its side being beat with water bouncing off was awesome.

looked like it was from a music video

everyone looked great and brought it for the 15 min or so

hope the pitch didn't get too damaged

Posted by: blancanieves | June 5, 2008 8:26 AM | Report abuse

Speaking of the Superliga (which I consider to be a complete waste of time) is there any talk of streaming free video from the official website like they did last year? I'm always looking for a way to waste time but I don't get TeleFutura.

Posted by: Harpo | June 5, 2008 8:27 AM | Report abuse

@Ron

Um, I'm sure at some point around the world this has been done. In a fan's mind, it seems to make reasonable enough sense. However, I'm sure the league and some other governing bodies would object to it - including the ownership of both teams.

While it makes sense schedule wise and all, if you figure you're on the wrong side of that result, you maybe bomb out of SuperLiga and you lose three points in MLS as well. That's a lot of weight for one game.

I just state that unless they could the game June 18 (cramming for both teams) or the All-Star game (likely both teams wouldn't have overlapping committments), then I see no need to further burden the September and October of both clubs.

Posted by: Virginia Blue Blood | June 5, 2008 8:28 AM | Report abuse

so now does robinson have to serve his suspension in houston's next game, or will he be suspended in the make-up game? or is he off the hook?

Posted by: pat | June 5, 2008 8:35 AM | Report abuse

Ive been in harder rain during a United game. I believe it was a double header with the US Nats vs Honduras Nats and then it was DC vs Columbus. Downpour for at least a good 50 mins and that didnt stop them. Our field wasnt as bad as the Steelers vs Miami game last year. The drum circles were good and seeing those people run on to the field was pretty funny.

Posted by: The Jim | June 5, 2008 8:48 AM | Report abuse

I'm sad that United didn't get to play Houston when it appeared factors were in their favor (Waibel, Robinson, AND Ching out??), but I'm getting a really good sense of an impending upswing for the Black and Red. It may be a total hunch, but I'm calling it now - we're back.

Posted by: spectre | June 5, 2008 1:54 AM
______________________________
Waibel was playing for Houston. It was Wade Barrett who was missing (a bigger loss, in my opinion).

Posted by: schmuckatelli | June 5, 2008 8:49 AM | Report abuse

That was definitely one of very best games i've been to.. and the 15:41 of soccer played wasn't too bad either! Good to see Will Chang braving it out at the tailgate with us too :)

Posted by: Anonymous | June 5, 2008 8:49 AM | Report abuse

Great pic Matt!

Did you photoshop out the ball or was Luci practicing his footwork on Mulrooney?!

Posted by: DE | June 5, 2008 8:53 AM | Report abuse

The ball's behind Mulrooney I thought it might have been a handball, but apparently not.

Posted by: Matt Mathai | June 5, 2008 8:59 AM | Report abuse

The ball's behind Mulrooney I thought it might have been a handball, but apparently not.

Posted by: Matt Mathai | June 5, 2008 8:59 AM | Report abuse

* When the refs called the delay, the supporters stayed put and cranked it up a notch. As the stands were bouncing up and down, each downward bounce produced a wave of water out from under the stands.

* Simms splash dive was a classic.

* If you were a bratwurst sponsor of a major league team, wouldn't you want the stadium to actually sell your product?

* 24 oz. Heinekens. Nice.

* Very interesting article in Post today on stadium location in Greenbelt, and what prompted the recent flurry of activity in DC Council. Not everything that happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, I guess. Greenbelt location is right next to both Metro and MARC rail, which would provide public transport option to both DC and Baltimore fans.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/06/04/AR2008060401481

Posted by: Old WNT fan | June 5, 2008 8:59 AM | Report abuse

Old WNT fan: I can't open that link. It takes me to search page saying it may have removed..

Posted by: td | June 5, 2008 9:12 AM | Report abuse

bbb

Posted by: Anonymous | June 5, 2008 9:20 AM | Report abuse

WNT

Can you please check the link

this one is returning an error

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/06/04/AR2008060401481

Possible its been taken down too?

thanks

Posted by: Anonymous | June 5, 2008 9:20 AM | Report abuse

I found it. Search under MD and there you can find the article.

Posted by: td | June 5, 2008 9:22 AM | Report abuse

I meant to say Local and then click on MD

Posted by: td | June 5, 2008 9:23 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: OWNTF | June 5, 2008 9:24 AM | Report abuse

Yep, that's working.

Posted by: td | June 5, 2008 9:25 AM | Report abuse

At this point I hope MacFarlane just tells Fenty to shove it and goes with MD. This whole farce the District's been playing with United is getting old and insulting.

Posted by: RowdyRoddyPiper | June 5, 2008 9:27 AM | Report abuse

PS -- Hanging in Vegas with Marion Barry at Vic MacFarlane's party. I like that gig, I may run for DC Council.

Posted by: OWNTF | June 5, 2008 9:29 AM | Report abuse

Greenbelt location is right next to both Metro and MARC rail, which would provide public transport option to both DC and Baltimore fans.
========================================

If the Purple Line ever materialized, would that help, too? (Admittedly, this would be far in the future.)

Posted by: Anonymous | June 5, 2008 9:33 AM | Report abuse

Trying to kill two birds with one stone would pose additional problems. Which sponsoring organization (MLS or Superliga) would assign the officials to work the game? Which organization would decide on disciplinary actions (fines, multi-game suspensions, etc.)? Which TV deal would determine who broadcasts the game? Also, is Superliga one of those affairs in which four subs are allowed?

Posted by: tri-village | June 5, 2008 9:39 AM | Report abuse

But what about us fans out in the Virginia side? Why is it that we always get shafted?

I dunno, I'm not too keen on going out to MD (though I will) as it makes the tailgaiting a little bit more difficult, when you have lazy friends that would much rather take the bloody metro. Friends that are scared of the rain and immediately run for cover the first sign of a little bit of spittle.

*grumbles* I'm angry today......

Posted by: Anonymous | June 5, 2008 9:40 AM | Report abuse

Oddly, it never rained in the Ugly Mug....

Posted by: skippy | June 5, 2008 9:49 AM | Report abuse

Goff reports that a decision to resume play could have been made as late as 11:15 p.m. (i.e., they could have played until about 1:00 a.m.). What would that have done to all the fans who came by Metro?

Posted by: tri-village | June 5, 2008 9:54 AM | Report abuse

That was some crazy rain. Even with a poncho on I was soaked. Did anyone catch the people run out on the field at like 9:30? One of the security guards took a huge spill upon entering the field, best entertainment all night.

Posted by: Kevin | June 5, 2008 10:07 AM | Report abuse

KEvin,

and notice he stood up to take a bow after the spill? that was entertainment.

I personally loved the rain, reminded me of growing up playing in deluges on awful fields in Oregon. and I stayed until the call time, how often do you actually have the opportunity to get soaking wet anymore?

shame they didn't get the game in, though, the boys needed a good home match against a weakened team. now the fixture congestion just gets worse. anyone know the last MLS game to be called for weather?

Posted by: northzax | June 5, 2008 10:36 AM | Report abuse

KEvin,

and notice he stood up to take a bow after the spill? that was entertainment.

I personally loved the rain, reminded me of growing up playing in deluges on awful fields in Oregon. and I stayed until the call time, how often do you actually have the opportunity to get soaking wet anymore?

shame they didn't get the game in, though, the boys needed a good home match against a weakened team. now the fixture congestion just gets worse. anyone know the last MLS game to be called for weather?

Posted by: northzax | June 5, 2008 10:39 AM | Report abuse

dude, when that csc guy wiped out, i nearly pooped myself. the best part was that when he got up as everyone was laughing, he did a bow.

also clutch was everyone chanting "let them go! let them go!" as well as the disgusted look on the face of the cops who had to walk out into the rain to regulate

Posted by: matt | June 5, 2008 10:45 AM | Report abuse

If the RFK pitch had been "raised" off the ground like, say, Old Trafford, would it have drained any better?

That was one night when wearing a raincoat made NO difference whatsoever. Every time I thought, "It can't rain any harder than this," it DID. At least the air temperature was in the 70s (can you imagine playing -- or spectating -- in rain like that in early April? ugh).

Posted by: Juan-John | June 5, 2008 10:52 AM | Report abuse

There are two weeks off before the start of Superliga -- why aren't they looking at that to schedule the game?

Posted by: Fisch Fry | June 5, 2008 10:58 AM | Report abuse

That was one night when wearing a raincoat made NO difference whatsoever. Every time I thought, "It can't rain any harder than this," it DID. At least the air temperature was in the 70s (can you imagine playing -- or spectating -- in rain like that in early April? ugh).

Posted by: Juan-John | June 5, 2008 10:52 AM

Try Foxsborough in November in 1996!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 5, 2008 10:59 AM | Report abuse

Or the match against Olympia Honduras last year.... low 40's monsoon. Thankfully I was well fortified and didn't feel a thing.

Posted by: AlecW81 | June 5, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Um, I'm sure at some point around the world this has been done. In a fan's mind, it seems to make reasonable enough sense. However, I'm sure the league and some other governing bodies would object to it - including the ownership of both teams.

Posted by: Virginia Blue Blood | June 5, 2008 8:28 AM

@Ron and VBB

In the A-League, the first round US Open Cup used to/may still double as league and cup matches to save time. You could lose in the League and be out of the Cup at the same time, but I guess that saves you another bus trip from Seattle to Rochester.

Is that a sign of a real soccer nation when Univision and Comcast Sports Net could fight it out over who would get to air the game?

Posted by: AM | June 5, 2008 11:24 AM | Report abuse

There was a bigger monsoon than last night. It was in the middle of July in 97 I think against Tampa. It was a blistering hot day and about halfway thru the first half a huge black cloud rolled in. They turned the lights on and it just opened up! It was raining so hard you couldn't see across the field.It was a river coming down the stairs into the Barra. I remember standing in about three inches of water. Then John Maessner scored in that deluge right before halftime. After the half the sun came out and it was even hotter than before. Evrything was dry like it never rained by the time the game was over.

Posted by: Chico | June 5, 2008 11:56 AM | Report abuse

I spent three years in a monsoon country, Thailand, and last night's deluge brought back memories.

I'm glad they didn't start Niell. He could have drowned in some of the puddles - standing up.

Posted by: Hedbal | June 5, 2008 1:44 PM | Report abuse

Power got nocked out in my neighborhood just after 3 and I didn't feel right leaving my daughter with the neighbor until my wife got home as she didn't have power either. So instead of going to the game I figured I could watch it somewhere.
Wifey made it home and we decided to try eating dinner at Bailey's @ Ballston. With some intuitive routing we were able to navigate around some of the intersections that were out and we realized about half of Arlington must have lost their power and decided to head to the mall as well.
So after the usual "Can we please put on the United game, who cares about a stupid Redsocks game, this is washington spiel" We got some beers and menus and noticed they were still waiting. Then the fun part: Every single television in Bailey's lost it's signal! I honestly felt bad for all the Penguins fans that were SOL... OH well, didn't miss much though and we got our power back by morning.
FYI it's really like pulling teeth to get them to put on the LOCAL soccer game at Bailey's and this is my official, stamp of dissaproval, dont waste your time and go to Kitty Oshea's.

Posted by: Dadryan | June 5, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Ron:

Back in the day, MLS doubled up league games with Open Cup qualifying games. I don't know if DC ever played in one, though.

***

Last night was awesome. That was in the top 3 rainstorms of my life (probably not #1 though, as I got caught outside in the 2005 storm on the Eastern Shore that dumped 9" of rain in one night). Caught up with old friends before and during the delay, and got to really observe up close how much faster my United shirt dries as compared to other materials. Well done, Adidas.

I really hope MLS makes Robinson sit out the make up game against us and not Houston's next match. His being in their lineup, as opposed to Ianni, is a massive difference. I'm not really sure what the regulations are on that, though (or if MLS even has such regulations).

Posted by: Anonymous | June 5, 2008 6:03 PM | Report abuse

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