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United Rewind

For the second time in four days, D.C. United played to a tie that sure looked and felt like a loss. On Saturday, United purred at the start and faded in the second half during a head-scratching, 2-2 draw at lowly San Jose. On Tuesday night, Coach Tom Soehn opted for a lineup of mostly reserves that was never in rhythm, conceded a horrible goal and missed some quality opportunities in the 1-1 deadlock with a Firpo team that is in preseason.

(By the way, how many really bad goals has DCU given up this year? Wallace punching the ball for a PK the other day, Namoff's own goal against Colorado, John's back pass at Colorado.....)

On the bright side, United remained unbeaten at home (RFK and SoccerPlex) in all competitions this year with a 10-0-5 mark. That's worth something, right? Right? The club's next home match: Aug. 9 vs. Real Madrid at FedEx Field.

A few notes: Santino Quaranta was ineligible because of a red card received in the Champions League group finale last year. ... Ange N'Silu had a slight muscle strain when he departed late in the first half, but Soehn said he was removed primarily for his performance. ... Negotiations continue with David Habarugira, the Belgium-based Burundi national team defender.

Read my match report with quotes.

The player ratings reflect the blandness of United's performance.....

Kocic 5; Jakovic 5, Janicki 3, John 5; McTavish 5, Jacobson 4.5, DiRaimondo 5, Szetela 5, Wallace 5.5; Moreno 6, N'Silu 4. Subs: Emilio 5, Gomez 4, Pontius 6.

By Steve Goff  |  July 29, 2009; 12:52 AM ET
Categories:  CONCACAF Champions League , D.C. United  
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Next: Wednesday Kickaround

Comments

I'm really looking forward to seeing what Habarugira can do. Get him signed. I'm kinda loathe to see much more of Janicki -- not without a switch to a 4-man line. Wish we could bury N'Silu far enough down the bench so we don't see him suit up. This would leave us just 2 problems -- the left back question and finding a consistent scorer.

Posted by: fischy | July 29, 2009 1:06 AM | Report abuse

The ratings seem almost too kind, particularly John and DiRaimondo. I would have graded Wallace higher. There at least seemed to be a little rhythm between Rodney and Jaime.

Posted by: croftonpost | July 29, 2009 1:18 AM | Report abuse

For those interested, re: lineups --
Pachuca, who has a history of doing quite well in these CONCACAF tournaments, made only 2 changes to its starting 11 from Friday's Apertura opener against Tecos to the match against Jalapa on Tuesday, the GK and a CB.
Of course, they only traveled 400 miles to get home, and will be home again for their next match on Saturday.
Seems like no matter when they play this tournament, it's bad timing for DC. I'd very much love to pull out a result in San Salvador, but it's hard to envision it at this point.

Posted by: mjhoya12 | July 29, 2009 2:09 AM | Report abuse

Haba rugira, Haba rugira
Haba rugira venis'mecha

Posted by: Logan_Circle | July 29, 2009 2:17 AM | Report abuse

i thought Gomez played well enough to deserve better than a four. once we got our regulars in (particularly Pontius) the offens started to create those (missed) opportunities.

Posted by: combedge | July 29, 2009 5:56 AM | Report abuse

N'Silu makes $76,254 this year.

Quaranta makes $72,500.

Pontius makes $66,000.

DISCUSS.

Posted by: hoyanick1 | July 29, 2009 7:00 AM | Report abuse

N'Silu = cut
Quaranta = bargain
Pontius = raise coming

Posted by: freeholdsouth | July 29, 2009 7:15 AM | Report abuse

N'Silu should be released. I'd rather watch an 18-year old academy player at least look like he was trying hard. Did Francis Doe ever get picked up by another team?

Posted by: granadoskerry | July 29, 2009 7:39 AM | Report abuse

I thought that Kocic deserved a much higher grade; his assured play provided confidence to his teammates, unlike earlier this year.He seems to be growing in the job.
And how did John earn a 5? He often gave the ball away and was lucky not to have caused a defeat?

Posted by: bechtoldpk | July 29, 2009 7:50 AM | Report abuse

The fact that this was the match that could put DC in the Group stages of the tournament, makes Soehn's line-up last night just a WTF mystery. I guess from the Firpo coach's comments that was by intent perhaps, confuse them and give them confidence.

Anyhow I've felt for a long time that Soehn is a tactical lightweight and a poor game manager (he seems to be a hell of a nice guy but give me an SOB that wins anyday).

For example: DC is up 2-0 on the road at SJ, it would seem to be a good idea, (sense a very important game is only a few days away), to close up shop and switch to a more defensive position and pull one of the older attacking players to rest them, but nope he keeps a 3-5-2 shape and waits for the inevitable cross from the left (how many goals have resulted from this scenario??) and score. Burch has a hell of a left foot but I wouldn't let him mark my 4 year olds coloring book. All-in-all this team lacks any sense of intensity period.

Soehn’s comment about not finding “chemisty” during the match is pretty telling, because who would suspect a mid-field that has barely played together (certainly one w/ a player that has been with the team only a few weeks positioned as playmaker) to have any chemistry, also once the team actually started to have some he pulled the only chemist on the field: Jamie.

Oh well buy your Open Cup final tickets and enjoy the only Cup/final this coach, in my humble opinion, is actually able of achieving.


Posted by: SoehntheExit | July 29, 2009 8:01 AM | Report abuse

Is it me or is the Habanugira negotiation taking forever?

Posted by: no_recess | July 29, 2009 8:08 AM | Report abuse

Our backline loves to turn the ball over and our MF did not have any chemistry. DiRaimondo, Jacobson, McTavish (who was just awful), Wallace, and Szetela have not been together on the pitch enough as a unit during matches. We were simply out played by a team that wasn't even fully fit. Firpo's players started cramping up at the 60th minute. I think Soehn deserves a little of the credit for that loss.

Posted by: no_recess | July 29, 2009 8:12 AM | Report abuse

Gomez was sadly absent much of the 2nd half - he did not impose himself on the match as a willful #10 should.

Why it took the team ~ 60 minutes to find its collective feet is beyond me. Sleepwalking much of the first half. Janicki's "dribbles" are inexcusable. Overall we looked tentative and uncomfortable with the ball (until the last ~ 15 minutes). Are we sure this is mid-season for DCU? Did not look it.

Posted by: 22206no1 | July 29, 2009 8:28 AM | Report abuse

Except for the early years with Bruce Arena, United has always struggled against the possession-oriented, technically good Central American teams. United is typically slower, more cumbersome, and unable to hold the ball for any long stretches.

For some reason, this team is not built for regional competition south of the border. Which is why I never hold out hope for any CONCACAF-related success.

Posted by: joedoc1 | July 29, 2009 8:30 AM | Report abuse

I don't know what happened, but last season, Janicki looked very strong. This season he's like a deer in headlights. That dribble out of the back only to lose it and give them an easy goal, my 8 yr old knows better than that.

We were lucky to come away with a tie. It's growing very tiresome to watch us tie.

Posted by: dogboy | July 29, 2009 8:36 AM | Report abuse

Oh, and if Soehn continues to want to play a 3 back, he should go Namoff, Jackovic, John. John's got the experience and he's a solid defender.

Posted by: dogboy | July 29, 2009 8:39 AM | Report abuse

Goff no offense, but are you phonin' this one in too?
It was irritating enough that the switch to Galavision this year was an afterthought, but what really gets me is why no one was around to remind us why Quaranta was really out until the last second as well. I'm sure we'll get a hot exclusive with Timmy Howard or something...
Maybe I should go grab that cup of coffee.
Coach Tommy sure does know to mystify his audience doesn't he?

Posted by: DadRyan | July 29, 2009 8:40 AM | Report abuse

Goff you gave Janicki a 3? Very generous, sir, very generous.

Posted by: thamlin | July 29, 2009 8:46 AM | Report abuse

Andrew Jacobson is the least effective central midfielder I've ever seen. Did you ever notice that he's NEVER involved in the play? He never makes a tackle, never checks back for the ball. He's not fast, can't dribble, doesn't work much, isn't a great passer, doesn't win balls in the air, and can't tackle. The only thing he does well is shoot from distance, and even that wasn't working last night. He's like Claudio Reyna without the skill.

I think we should all take a minute to recognize that we've been taking Clyde Simms for granted. If we need a stopgap central midfielder, let's use McTavish, since he is at least a decent defensive player (and too slow to play on the wing).

Posted by: jsm91 | July 29, 2009 9:01 AM | Report abuse

I am not agreeing or disagreeing with the comments directed at Soehn. However, I find it extremely hard to believe last night's line-up was strictly Soehn's doing. Success or failure starts at the top and Payne almost certainly deserves some blame for last night's debacle. In fact, I believe he deserves the lions share of the blame.

Posted by: croftonpost | July 29, 2009 9:02 AM | Report abuse

I still stand by most of my sentiments last night. My tirade was pretty spot-on!

MLS' performance in international competition is a self-inflicted wound. Results by teams in SuperLiga, Friendlies, and Champions League/Cup are looking more and more like flukes in the last half a decade. (Maybe an exaggeration...).

I don't ask that MLS allow run-away, rampant spending or even attempting to put club budgets in line with what a mid-table club in England or Spain is on.

I'm perfectly happy to discover talent in the Western Hemisphere - but I want to spend the same money that decently capitalized teams in this half of the world do. I would love to read the analysis on club payrolls from Mexico and elsewhere vs MLS as well as the revenue opportunities they have that MLS could capture as well.

If MLS is going to ever hope to advance in these competitions we are going to need our reserves to be more capable coming off the bench - to accomplish that - we're going to need a bigger payroll.

Posted by: VirginiaBlueBlood | July 29, 2009 9:17 AM | Report abuse

...and Danny-boy Szetela -- early days still, but not a performance last night that really inspires. Hope that it is attributable to jet lag or whatever.

Posted by: 22206no1 | July 29, 2009 9:29 AM | Report abuse

I think Kosic deserved a higher rating, some of those shots could have been goals. To me, he kept us in the game. What happened to Devon MacTavish's Touch?

Posted by: godpere | July 29, 2009 9:35 AM | Report abuse

The roster depth seemed fine for the Open Cup...

Posted by: Reignking | July 29, 2009 9:43 AM | Report abuse

I agree with godpere. It could easily have been 4-1. He made some very good saves.

Posted by: BlackandRedRedDevil | July 29, 2009 9:45 AM | Report abuse

Painful to watch. You would think at this stage of the season, whether subs are playing or not, we would be able to string some passes together and not constantly force things all over the field. I can think of maybe 2-3 quality sequences and the rest looked like a pick-up game. Interesting too how these games highlight the weaknesses of some players that are otherwise "covered" by the performance of their better teammates. McTavish, Janicki, Dirimando, etc. You would think that the more you play, the smarter you get in terms of tactics and what you should and should not do, but these guys and several others just don't seem to be making any progress. The same can be said for Soehn. Tactically, this team is no better than last year (hey we have the same number of points as the Galaxy)and that is on Soehn. I am thinking that if we don't win some hardware this year or go pretty far, he is toast.

Posted by: Ruthie1 | July 29, 2009 9:54 AM | Report abuse

Soehn is definitely a tactical lightweight and a poor game manager. He has shown that from year 1, day 1.

Soehn misjudged the match last night, or else he wouldnt have put Emilio and Gomez in so quickly in game, using 2 subs by the 45th minute. I doubt Payne is to blame for this.

Also, Goffinho's ratings are low for Wallace and way way generous for Moreno, Pontius, McTavish, DiRaimondo and Jacobson.

I have no expectation this year will be much better than last. No stadium, no MLS Cup and international embarrassment. Perhaps we will win the US Open Cup again. Big #%@ing deal.

Posted by: juanma_carr | July 29, 2009 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Were we all watching the same game? Our goalie did a great job. Jacobson & DiRaimondo ran a good mid-field. They brought Szetela into the game. Our forwards - well I'll leave it at that. We had an extremely slow fullback and got scored on. Wallace runs fast but can't do anything unless it is with his left foot. He bends and goes high with his shot 9 out of 10 times. We could have tried Eli Allen out last night. Pontius did not do that much when he came in. Fred is a forward too - we might try him up there with Emilio or Jaime. I'd say the first thing is to set the backfield. Goalie is good. Then work our way forward. If Terry Cook is available off Colorado he would be a good pickup. Jacobson & DiRaimondo both fed people all night long. They can't make them score tho.

Posted by: VirginiaFan | July 29, 2009 9:59 AM | Report abuse

szetela should be about a 3 and janiki might be closer to a 2 or a 1. same with avery john

Posted by: GraciasRiquelme | July 29, 2009 10:01 AM | Report abuse

Certainly sounds like Soehn is going to go for the win on Tuesday, though:

"I know this – that on Saturday [vs. Houston] we’re going to focus on Saturday and pick up the pieces after that and we’ll worry about Tuesday [at Firpo], but Saturday is a very important game."

Oh, wait. Never mind. Sounds more like we're going to send the reserves down and forget this whole thing ever happened. I'm sure we'll win at Houston to make it worth while, though.......

Posted by: the_slammer | July 29, 2009 10:06 AM | Report abuse

Haba rugira, Haba rugira
Haba rugira venis'mecha

Posted by: Logan_Circle | July 29, 2009 2:17 AM

You have to sign a player when they practically write the songs for you!

Posted by: Kev29 | July 29, 2009 10:10 AM | Report abuse

Again, don't blame our reserve-level players for their reserve-level performance. Blame whoever decided to start them all, as a group, in a home-and-away elimination series in international competition.

Soehn picks the lineups and decides where to position his players. Surely he also receives plenty of guidance and feedback from his supervisors in the organization.

Posted by: Joel_M_Lane | July 29, 2009 10:19 AM | Report abuse

wallace was awful last night. im not sure what game u were watching.

he was giving the ball away with god awful passes. his finishes all looked like field goal attempts and his crosses were like a bridge to no where.

mctavish was awful too.

szetela is a dissapointment so far.

Posted by: castroviejo | July 29, 2009 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Highlights: major minutes for DiRaimondo and Szetela, first time I'd seen them in person for DCU. Neither was stellar, but both worked hard and covered a lot of ground. Good depth options for now and both show potential to move up IMO.

Lowlights: Wallace has shown zero improvement as a two way player since the season opener. Complete inability to focus, plays with his head down, tunnel vision with the ball at his feet, lack of field vision. A turnover machine, still. DCU's furtive, abortive attempts to rest him haven't helped. By this offseason I hope they start seriously looking at him as an option at LB (his natural position). He needs the deeper angle on the field and the extra time to make decisions with the ball.

Bear in mind, Janicki's coughing it up twice in 10 seconds - once at midfield with zero pressure, then inside his own 18! - cost us a shutout victory. But, if you're surprised by this, you haven't watched the last two seasons.

No problem with Soehn's lineup or game management, considering the schedule wrapped around this match. Obviously, CCL is DCU's last priority, and I can't say I disagree with that.

Would a win at Houston make this worthwhile?

Absolutely, 1000%.

Posted by: Godfather_of_Goals | July 29, 2009 10:25 AM | Report abuse

"Special Game C." Yeah, very "special."

I'm beginning to think I'm an idiot for buying season tickets when I can walk up to any game I want to see and sit pretty much wherever I want.

Posted by: OWNTF | July 29, 2009 10:26 AM | Report abuse

"You have to sign a player when they practically write the songs for you!"

That's the best name-song relation since LA had Harut Karapetian. "Harut, Harut, Harut is on fire!"

Posted by: Mastodon_Juan | July 29, 2009 10:42 AM | Report abuse

N'Silu = ex-3rd Division starter in mid-level European (Switzerland) League

Habarugira = 3rd Division starter in mid-level European (Belgium) League

I hope that Habarugira can help at LB but let's hope that N'Silu is not indicative of a trend of lower division Euro-based flops here.

Posted by: PhillyMLS | July 29, 2009 10:58 AM | Report abuse

It's the rhetoric that I find so disappointing. All the comments about how seriously the team takes these additional competitions, how badly they want to win. Why are you playing reserves?!

Posted by: DCU-ATL | July 29, 2009 11:07 AM | Report abuse

I don't understand all the negative press. Apparently I watch a different game on my tv. Is Sohen really that bad? Its his fault a defender who played well last yr dribbles out of the back? Also, Gomez should have scored in the 86 minutes, and Mctavish should have scored a few minutes later when Emilio laid the ball off. I see the real problem with this team is its inability to finish. We did enough to win. I really don't remember Firpo having that many chances -most were long range shots.

I am not saying DC played the best game of its lives but in reality it did enough to win. DC just can't finish.

I also think the last two games have shown how much this team misses Clyde Simms. Against San Jose, a team we are far technically superior too, we got dominated in the physical aspect of the game. They simply out paced and powered through our team. Simms brings the physical presence to our midfield. No one else has his range in terms of covering for our attack. He was also missed last night as everyone else was too slow in the midfield defensively. I know some have written before about him having a slow yr but I would disagree.

Posted by: grubbsbl | July 29, 2009 11:15 AM | Report abuse

On what planet does Moreno rate a "6" for last night's performance? I think the only ball that went someplace he may have intended for it to go was the PK he took. His passing was horrible, especially in the first half. Once Gomez got warmed up he improved for a short span, but even then only his passes to Gomez seemed to find a United player.
Don't mean to pick on only him, almost everyone was bad last night, but his was the rating that made me go "huh?".

Posted by: dcufan | July 29, 2009 11:19 AM | Report abuse

@PhillyMLS

Are you sure that Anderlecht is in the third division for Belgium? Does Belgium even have a third division? He was part of the Anderlecht's youth program. He was loaned in 2007-2008 to a Belgian second division team from what I recall.I think you many need to check your facts, but I could be wrong.

Posted by: no_recess | July 29, 2009 11:20 AM | Report abuse

I am not saying DC played the best game of its lives but in reality it did enough to win. DC just can't finish.

I also think the last two games have shown how much this team misses Clyde Simms.....

Posted by: grubbsbl | July 29, 2009 11:15 AM |
---------------------------------------------

All true.

Posted by: fischy | July 29, 2009 11:41 AM | Report abuse

N'Silu was N'Controvertibly N'Sipid, 4 is very kind.

Moreno has one of those nights when I shouted "shoot the ball" at my TV several times when I wasn't shouting "what was that?" for one of his passes. Not a top Jaime perfromance by any stretch.Agree with the earlier post that "6" is kind, even taking into account his PK.

I liked Szetela, particularly when he was playing more centrally. Wallace has energy but he really needs to see the field better and 5.5 seems generous, even compared to some others. Janicki=1.

Posted by: sportsparenttoo | July 29, 2009 12:15 PM | Report abuse

To: no_recess

Anderlecht is in 1st Division Belgium football. There are 3 divisions in Belgium. The guy we are trying to sign is a central defender off their reserve squad.

Posted by: VirginiaFan | July 29, 2009 12:33 PM | Report abuse

Terrible performance. I refuse to complement anybody's play last night. In my opinion the front office deserves the blame. The FO created the culture that produced last night's farce.

Posted by: blackandred777 | July 29, 2009 12:41 PM | Report abuse

These regional competitions are a waste of time. DCU could win every single one of the, but if we crash out of the MLS playoffs, the season will be considered a failure. The team knows these "Cups" are unimportant, from the coaches down to the waterboy. Both teams played at little more than half-speed last night, and, for a slow team like DCU that is saying something.

The sooner we are out of these no-name, waste-of time non-league "Cups" and "Ligas" the better.

Posted by: Ron16 | July 29, 2009 1:07 PM | Report abuse

These regional competitions are a waste of time. DCU could win every single one of the, but if we crash out of the MLS playoffs, the season will be considered a failure. The team knows these "Cups" are unimportant, from the coaches down to the waterboy. Both teams played at little more than half-speed last night, and, for a slow team like DCU that is saying something.

The sooner we are out of these no-name, waste-of time non-league "Cups" and "Ligas" the better.

Posted by: Ron16 | July 29, 2009 1:07 PM | Report abuse


All fine and good. However, the front office needs to stop telling the fans otherwise. It shows a complete lack of respect. I'm with all the others that are really ticked off about last night. I doubt I'll attend another CCL match.

Posted by: blackandred777 | July 29, 2009 1:15 PM | Report abuse

I agree with grubbsbl; we were better in the second half and I wouldn't say that Firpo dictated play but we and Firpo missed scoring chances. The final quality just was not there. Kocic made some good saves but Firpo was not as good as the teams in last year CCL group play.

The statement that we should drop out of the cup competitions is silly. How do you measure how good or bad you really are if you only play MLS clubs. The interesting thing about international competition is the different style of play and how you adapt etc. Last night was disappointing. It will be difficult to get a result in ES. In some sense, if we don't make group play in the CCL we will have fewer games and will be more rested for MLS play. Remember we are supposed to be one of the "big" clubs of MLS. Last years CCL was a miserable experience. I for one am hoping for better.

Posted by: sbg1 | July 29, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

I actually thought Szetela was good in the first half but faded badly in the second. As for Wallace, he seems to be hitting that dreaded rookie season wall. He doesn't appear to be injured, so he needs to toughen up mentally, dig deep and become a true pro, or he will slowly fade to a non-factor the rest of the season.

Kocic did well in his cameo.

Overall it was an extremely unmotivated effort last night. It's one thing to start the B team and lose or tie, but at least show some passion in the process. None of that was evident last night. And that starts with the coach. The club should have canned Soehn in the offseason but chose not to. I think he's been a little better this season than last, but he still has no clue how to prepare for these international matches. Maybe the club just doesn't care about them. If so, just tell us...it won't hurt my feelings, I've got other ways I can do on my weeknight evenings, really.

Posted by: cmjhawk86 | July 29, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

I really wouldn't blame the F.O. or even Soehn THAT much.

Simms is out.
Olsen wasn't fit to go.
Tino wasn't available.
Burch and Namoff have played a LOT of minutes.

This led to a less than optimum midfield... particular jacobsen and dirimando (who were just dreadful).

I thought Wallace and Szetela played pretty well, but the finishing just wasn't there.

I'd attribute McTavish's lack-luster performance to the demise of the reserve league. The Player's Union needs to have the Reserve League return in the next CBA.

I'd imagine we'll see as close to a 1st-team lineup in Houston, and a better mix of starters in the lineup down in San Salvador. Something like this:

-------------Wicks-------------
Namoff------Jakovic-------Burch
------Szetela-----Wallace------
Tino-----------------------Fred
-------------Gomez-------------
--------Moreno---Emilio--------

Posted by: alecw81 | July 29, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Anybody else feel ripped off for attending last night's game? My ticket bought me a DC United reserve team game. That is not what I thought I was paying for. Shame on KP for fostering such an environment.

Posted by: Gambrills4 | July 29, 2009 1:33 PM | Report abuse

sorry, typo...I mean I've got other things I can do...

Posted by: cmjhawk86 | July 29, 2009 1:33 PM | Report abuse

alecw81,

Based on your starting line-up for Houston, explain the thinking on Pontius last night to me. Didn't make sense to me.

Posted by: blackandred777 | July 29, 2009 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Somebody told Tommy that away goals count this year, right?

Amazing...instead of putting in the big guns and running a very mediocre Firpo team off the field in the first half (and then taking out a few to rest for Saturday), he elected to half-#@% it and you see the result. Now he pretty much has to play the starters down in San Salvador.

Posted by: HowdyDCU | July 29, 2009 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Whats sad was during our worst years we would smash aguila from el salvador 4-0 and beat the el salvador national team 3-1. With a better lineup we can barely tie FIRPO. what is it about superliga and concacaf champions league, since 08 it has brought out the worst in our team.

Posted by: Norteno4life | July 29, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Still annoyed that i watched that game. can't forgive the trotting out of the reserve team last night. it was a bit of an insult to the fans. can't make that many changes to the lineup and expect to win.

Posted by: PindarPushkin | July 29, 2009 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Still annoyed that i watched that game. can't forgive the trotting out of the reserve team last night. it was a bit of an insult to the fans. can't make that many changes to the lineup and expect to win.

Posted by: PindarPushkin | July 29, 2009 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Well said and completely accurate.

Settling in this competition is ridiculous and thoroughly unacceptable. The excuses and rationalizations I've read today are a joke. Play to win or don't play at all to include even SuperLiga. Anything less is contrary to the standard of excellence this franchise supposedly strives for.

Posted by: croftonpost | July 29, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Reviewing these posts...:
I felt at year's beginning that we have a mediocre team pointing downward(I have been a superfan since 96 and soccer since 56 but am getting more and more frustrated with the direction of my DCU). The Latino element is visibly fading after some earlier success: WHO CAN SERIOUSLY EXPECT MORENO,GOMEZ,EMILIO or FRED to return to their form of 3 or 4 years ago?? Also, DOES ANYONE BELIEVE THAT THESE 4 LATINOs ARE LISTENING to TS? The FO should see this; it is as clear as day.
DCU has to decide when it will make the painful cut and rebuild with younger players and a tactically more sophisticated coaching team. My own experience--playing/coaching on 3 continents--
tells me that we don't have a team.The results in SJ,Colo/SLC etc. are reflective of what we have now. DCU is nowhere's near the unit of a Houston, Chicago, even Seattle or Columbus when everyone is available. Consider how poor DCU played in 3 USOpen cup matches AT HOME against LOWER division teams. We are lucky to be where we are, and unless the FO is committed to improve the
overall situation, we will continue to have posts like these.
As for me, I will always support DCU but have lowered my expectations(:-(.!.

Posted by: bechtoldpk | July 29, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse

I get the feeling that a lot of people make up their minds about players and coaches, and then create thoughts that work for the opinions. It should really be the other way around: observe, form opinion, leave it open for change if someone happens that is counter to the opinion. John, for example, is getting largely excoriated, and it seems that it's not at all based on what went on last night. People have just decided that he sucks and will always suck at every moment of every game forever. If John played so poorly, why did Firpo focus all their attacks down our right side? Why did Leguizamon move from a central playmaker role to that of a left-sided forward? If John was so awful last night, Castillo would have put his best player nearer to him; instead, he moved him to the other side of the field.

As much as I'm not joining up with the angry mob we have forming here, I do have to acknowledge that we were told the team was taking the CCL seriously, while the lineup last night did not reflect that. I'm guessing that the team sent out against Houston will be much stronger. I'm fine with choosing the league over the CCL, provided we aren't given the illusion that it will be otherwise. That doesn't justify some of the outrage I've read about this game. I can't help but note that the thought-out, measured arguments here have not been in favor of gathering the pitchforks and storming RFK.

How would people have reacted if Janicki hadn't made such an awful mistake, or if one of the many shots Firpo blocked had gone in? There are a lot of people crawling out of the woodwork to join the mob after a couple bad results. Where are these opinions when we're winning? It stands to reason that the front office, coaching, and player problems people have exist in either case, so why are there no complaints unless we lose (or, in this case, draw 2 in a row)?

Posted by: Chest_Rockwell | July 29, 2009 5:16 PM | Report abuse

Chest,

I for one have never been one to rip this organization. I believe it is very well run for the most part. That does not excuse what was done with regards to this competition. As you noted, they said the emphasis would be otherwise and it obviously was not. I'm sorry but that is disrespectful anyway you look at it. I will continue to support the club as always but I will definitely be a lot more wary of the CCL competition henceforth.

Posted by: croftonpost | July 29, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse

I for one have never been one to rip this organization. I believe it is very well run for the most part. That does not excuse what was done with regards to this competition. As you noted, they said the emphasis would be otherwise and it obviously was not. I'm sorry but that is disrespectful anyway you look at it. I will continue to support the club as always but I will definitely be a lot more wary of the CCL competition henceforth.

Posted by: croftonpost | July 29, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse

Exactly. What the organization did last night is akin to the Redskins telling their fan base that winning the first preseason game is critical. They were disingenuous, pure and simple.

Posted by: Gambrills4 | July 29, 2009 6:02 PM | Report abuse

DCU has to decide when it will make the painful cut and rebuild with younger players and a tactically more sophisticated coaching team.

Posted by: bechtoldpk | July 29, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse

My words exactly for ahh.. almost 2 years, Chest you can attest to that. Anyhow bechtoldpk I feel your pain having also been a fan since opening day '96, as well as a season ticket holder from that time until this season, because I'd rather watch the mediocrity from the couch. Here’s a comment from Bruce at Du Nord soccer blog that pretty much sums it all up:

Yet another wretched performance from DC United in the CCL. They have now played 7 games in this tournament (last year and this) and have yet to win a game (5 losses and 2 draws right?). What the hell is going on with the club that has by far the most experience in the entire league with international matches. Something has to give.

Indeed it does.

Posted by: SoehntheExit | July 29, 2009 7:28 PM | Report abuse

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