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United Rewind

At halftime Saturday night at RFK, Raul Diaz Arce strolled onto the field for induction into D.C. United's Hall of Tradition. He should have stayed out there for the second half. Even at age 39 and eight years removed from MLS, he probably would've been more effective than Luciano Emilio.

United needed a striker to rise to the occasion. Emilio failed miserably. Just a reminder: He will earn almost $760,000 this season -- more than Jakovic, Pontius, Wallace, Simms, McTavish, Namoff, Quaranta, Jacobson and Khumalo combined.

Fred ($257,000) was equally bad (in a versatile way), but for just 52 minutes. One has to question not only whether he should continue to earn starts, but whether he should even be on the game-day roster. Christian Gomez is a $321,000 part-time player.

My match report with quotes.

Watch the video highlights.

Of Note: Milos Kocic and youth academy signing Bill Hamid are tentatively set to be the game-day goalkeepers for Tuesday's Champions League match at San Juan Jabloteh in T&T.

Wicks 4; Namoff 3, James 4, Simms 5, John 4; Quaranta 4.5, Wallace 6, Olsen 6, Fred 3; Moreno 6, Emilio 2. Subs: Pontius 5, Jacobson 5, Gomez 5.

By Steve Goff  |  September 13, 2009; 12:44 AM ET
Categories:  D.C. United  
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C'mon Tino did well. And you have a typo "...but whether he should even by on the game-day roster."

Posted by: decoi | September 13, 2009 12:51 AM | Report abuse

""Fred ($257,000) was equally bad (in a versatile way)""

Badly versatile? Veritible vacuous versatility?

Irregardlss er eitherway or on the other side of crap creek . . . Wick's still bites. I said it first, I'll say it again. He's a poop sandwich.

Now, I am not saying he was at fault for the first Seattle goal. But when you come out half grandma'd when the guy is 1 on 1, you deserve to get megged. Plus, why are you even coming out before the guy hit's the 18 or 12 yard line? At that crazy angle? Make yourself big and when you close. Close hard! We've had munchkin keepers like Rimando play tougher than you.

Next . . . the second goal you let in was god awful. Maybe it defected but still . . it's from 25 yards out and they you are flopping your hands around . . . it's not paddycake!

Posted by: delantero | September 13, 2009 1:04 AM | Report abuse

ugh. many typosss' in the last post. going to bed, am i.

Suck, you do, Wicks.

Posted by: delantero | September 13, 2009 1:05 AM | Report abuse

Too harsh on Namoff, IMO. But that's a minor issue.

Emilio is done. The fork sticking out of his back is so large, Sigi Schmidt would be comfortable eating dinner with it. He's lost at least one step, more likely two, he gives up on plays sometimes before they are done, he doesn't turn with his old agility, and his first touch has gotten worse and worse over time. And it's clear at this point that the magic ain't comin' back.

The only silver lining I can see is this: the forwards have aged so badly, so profoundly this season that management has no excuse to avoid a major roster (and salary structure) overhaul and no incentive to think that they might be able to squeeze another year out of these guys. Keep Jaime in a late-era-Dennis-Bergkamp kind of role, keep Benny as a player/coach, clear out Emilio, Fred, and Gomez, and build around the kids.

The nice thing is, with Wallace, Pontius, Jakovic, Simms, Namoff, Burch, Tino, and possibly James and Szetala, we shouldn't need to have a "rebuilding" year. We can come back stronger very quickly. But the deadwood needs to be cleared out.

Posted by: bselig | September 13, 2009 1:15 AM | Report abuse

Hey, I influenced Goff. Next up DC United's Front Office. The team is about to a get a striker, a couple of winger's, a playmaker and Crayton back.

Posted by: decoi | September 13, 2009 1:22 AM | Report abuse

Wicks has always had a problem coming out too soon. Even in the Dallas game he shouldn't have come out like he did. But I definitely think he's the starter, he's kept us in a lot of these games.

Szetela... what's going on there?!? Even if he is just a "gamer" you'd think he be getting some minutes...
...hopefully midweek.

Posted by: StewartDC8 | September 13, 2009 1:43 AM | Report abuse

Too harsh on Namoff?! Like I said in the last thread, he sucked acorns.

Posted by: DadRyan | September 13, 2009 1:44 AM | Report abuse

No more Tommy-Coach, no more Fred...EVER!!!

How come we have played more games than every othe MLS team? Weren't we in some other cup competitions, too?

Posted by: asocrlovr | September 13, 2009 1:45 AM | Report abuse

We all need to settle down people, Goff included. Fred and Emilio have obviously been struggling. There's nothing new or surprising about it. We've been criticizing them for weeks and only now does Goff or irregular soccer insider guests realize or come around to seeing it. Goff: That United Rewind is perhaps the harshest I've EVER seen you write. And I've seen games where we've played WAY worse than tonight. The impact of this game is huge on our position in the standings but like I mentioned earlier, the outcome of the game could've gone either way. Don't hate the player, hate the person who put them there...

Namoff does not suck "acorns" whatever that is supposed to mean. I would say Namoff is our number one defender with Jakovic right behind him.

Posted by: redskinsux | September 13, 2009 2:03 AM | Report abuse

Namoff gave up a goal because he doesn't have the speed to match Zakuani. Nobody does. I don't think he deserves a '3'.

Fred and Emilio on the other hand, should each be getting a '0'. Shockingly bad performances from both of them. Emilio has the worst first touch since Lassiter. Fred specializes in completing passes to the opposition. It was painful, and I don't see either one of them being brought back next year even if they agree to to 80% pay cuts.

Posted by: mmathai1 | September 13, 2009 2:25 AM | Report abuse

Frankly, I thinke everything Goff wrote is entirely justified.

This DC United team is just plain bad. The so called money players are old, slow and just out of ideas.

TS has to go now. This season is done. Whether they manage to squeek into the playoffs or not this is a team at the end of its life. It time to pull the plub.

What was really disturbing was just how bad this group of LA Galaxy rejects has become. As I was watching the game, I was thinking just how few of these players should be back next year.

In my opinion United has only 3 players that are worth truly moving to the new United: Pontius, Wallace and Jakovic. I might also add Namoff, Olsen and Kocic but even these three have big question marks for next year.

You really have to look at United Management that has held on to coaches and players way past their due date. Mr Chang, it's time to clean house - your investment is not being well served.

Posted by: dcufan531 | September 13, 2009 2:31 AM | Report abuse

I didn't read the game thread, but my take on the Zakuani goal was that two things went wrong. First, Vagenas shouldn't have that opening to pass through. That's a minor problem, though, since we're talking about a pass in Seattle's end. The major problem was that Simms was nowhere to be found. Instead of a small gap between Simms and Namoff (where they can use the angles to force Zakuani into a double team, the corner, or anywhere but straight to goal), there was a massive gap because Simms was well upfield. Namoff then gets caught in a footrace against a player that no one on the field could keep up with. I don't really blame Namoff at all for that goal, unless he specifically told Simms to go upfield (seems unlikely).

Wicks should have come up with saves on both goals. On the first, there's no reason to be that close to Zakuani unless you're going into a slide to take the ball. He had 2 options: stop his charge a couple yards shorter and stand tall, or come through and hopefully get the ball. As often is the case when a keeper combines 2 options into 1 action, the ball was in the back of the net.

On the second, it's a goal at the near post, and all keepers know you don't get beat there. What bothers me the most is that Wicks looked like he wasn't quite aware that the shot was on goal until he brushed up against the post. It betrayed a lack of spatial awareness that is alarming. Montero's shot was extremely difficult to pull off (powerful, on the turn, into the upper corner), but Wicks has to make that save every time. If he'd have saved it and coughed up a rebound that ended up in the goal, I could live with it because Montero blasted that shot. However, the result was a sucker punch goal that has really put us in a terrible spot.

I don't know if Emilio deserved a 2 (I gave Janicki a 2 against Marathon, for example), in part because he was clearly being mugged by Hurtado yet managed to get a decent falling shot off on one botched chance. Still, one of his chances had to be buried, and his overall play was poor (especially in the first half). In the past, his spells of low confidence usually ended with a poacher's goal like the one he scored against KC. I figured we'd get a bright, dangerous performance out of Emilio; instead, he looked like he has during long scoring droughts.

Posted by: Chest_Rockwell | September 13, 2009 2:48 AM | Report abuse

Here are my ratings:

Wicks - 3
Both goals are on him, as I mentioned before. That cancels out the saves he did make.

Namoff - 4
Never came to grips with how to deal with Zakuani, whether or not his center backs didn't help him out.

Simms - 4
Where was he on the first goal? He did improve somewhat in the 2nd half, but I'm still left hoping Jakovic has a super fast recovery.

James - 5
Better than he's been lately, though with tighter refereeing he'd have been in trouble. Can't really blame him for playing the game the ref allowed. Shouldn't have let Montero have quite so much room to turn on the 2nd goal, but that's a save with proper keeping behind him.

John - 5.5
Seattle didn't get much on his side of the field, though to be fair they didn't seem interested in attacking much down their right.

Quaranta - 4
Barely involved. If we're going to have 2 holding midfielders, Quaranta has to be a catalyst rather than a bystander.

Olsen - 6
Along with Moreno, the only player to come off at half with any credibility. Steady all night, in spite of the lackluster showings of some and the poor decisions of others.

Wallace - 6
Conjured up a goal by sheer force of will. Poor first half, but the goal boosted his overall play.

Fred - 3
Proposed new nickname for Fred: Scarecrow. Why? Because he lacks a brain. Moreno tried valiantly to make use of him, only for Fred to do whatever the wrong option was at the time.

Moreno - 6
Brimming with good ideas, but lacked contributions from the 3 players most likely to help him out (Quaranta, Fred, and Emilio). Seattle quickly sussed this out and mobbed him.

Emilio - 3
Covered this previously.

Pontius - 5
Not totally uninvolved, but didn't make the desired impact, either. If you're religious, pray for a Moreno-Pontius front line in our next match.

Jacobson - NR

Gomez - NR

Posted by: Chest_Rockwell | September 13, 2009 3:02 AM | Report abuse

Brutal Steve! I approve wholeheartedly.


Although I agree with your assessment of Wicks actions on the first goal, I have trouble faulting the keeper completely when the keeper is placed in a 1 v 1 situation. Seems a tad brutal to me.

Posted by: croftonpost | September 13, 2009 5:20 AM | Report abuse

I am a patient fan, now filled with disgust.

So we let Crayton go, and used his salary dollars to get Szetela? Brilliant. How many more games is Wicks going to cost us?

How many years of coaching school does it take to figure out that you write down "Pontius" and "Wallace" on the roster to play for 90 minutes, every game, and then think about who the other 9 should be?

Any U16 can kick the ball 50 yards down the field, as we spent the whole first half doing. What is the point of having Moreno on the field if all we do is kick the ball over his head to the other team? Only when we went back to the short game in the early part of the second half did we look dangerous.

Despite all of which, we probably win the match but for the non-call of the arm-tackle against Emilio at the top of the box in the 74th minute, which should be a red card in any league. And, since I'm in a foul mood, which our esteemed blogmaser failed to mention in his Emilio-bash. Would the criticism be so intense had Emilio been allowed to play and score the winning goal?

Other than all that, the weather was nice.

Posted by: granadoskerry | September 13, 2009 6:11 AM | Report abuse

Quaranta, Simms, Wallace, and Olsen were all right. They at least give effort. Pontius, too, when he comes off the bench. I'd give 5 to each of them. Moreno is more than one step too slow for this league. You must have been watching the Diaz Arce video to give Jaime a 6. Wicks is absolutely terrible. Fred and Emilio were so bad that they don't deserve ratings, unless you can give negative numbers. Fred couldn't settle a gorgeous cross from Quaranta in the opening minutes that put him in alone on goal. Emilio's first attempt one-one with the keeper might be the worst attempt I have ever seen. He second was only terrible, but not in the league of the first for ridiculousness. When I say negative ratings, I mean it. You could see the life just sucked out of the team and the crowd after those attempts. Foget trying to eke into the playoffs. We're going nowhere even if someone else screws up and let's us get in. The time for change is NOW.

Posted by: rcdwriting | September 13, 2009 7:38 AM | Report abuse

redskinsux --

I don't think anybody is arguing that Namoff sucks in general, he just had an uncharacteristically bad night yesterday.

Posted by: spidergoose | September 13, 2009 8:30 AM | Report abuse

$978,000 against the salary cap for Fred, Gomez, and Emilio. That should tell you all you need to know.

Posted by: strago | September 13, 2009 9:16 AM | Report abuse


The only thing slower than Lucy was the mental processes of the center referee. He blew the whistle killing an advantage, and he awarded advantage when there was none.

He bought Freddy's dives in the first half and failed to address Seattle's frequent holding. When Emilio can provide a "Coppertone Moment" because his shorts are being held, it should be called.

The ref did not affect the goals we gave up, but he did hamper our attack (what little we had) and generally made the game unenjoyable.

USSF has got to do better. I'm tired of paying for mediocre officiating that kills attack. Protect the attackers and open the game up.

Posted by: carnack | September 13, 2009 9:17 AM | Report abuse

@Goff: You were a bit harsh on Namoff. If he's a 3, Emilio is a -3. It's about time for a broad takeout on DCU, focusing on the high salaries for over-the-hill and underperforming players. Tackle the question of where does DCU go from here. And whether Soehn is the manager to take the team forward. Is the fault his? Is the front office to blame? Do they share it? The fans need an in-depth look-ahead piece. Do any of the high-salary donkeys have guaranteed contracts for next year?
Blogs are great vehicles, but this is a story for the print edition.

If Simms is going to play as a central defender, he must learn the position. Last night was not the first time he was caught upfield for an opposition goal.

Wicks has been victimized by his defense. With proper support, he does his job well. As GKs go, he is still a youngster. He has the physical skills. Experience will improve his mental decisions -- as it generally does for GKs.

Not all DCUs problems are onfield. Comcast Sports also needs a shakeup. Dave Johnson is a hometowner apologist who should study England's play-by-play announcers to learn how to call a futball match. And Comcast's director, the one who decides which camera shots to show, needs to learn Rule 1 of futball coverage: when the ball is in play, you show the ball, not irrelevant closeups of a player or the crowd.

Posted by: runningcloud | September 13, 2009 9:19 AM | Report abuse

I will agree that Luci has to finish at least one of those two chances. But he is pretty isolated up there without much in the way of support. But when he does have support he doesn't really use it anyway because he is looking to go to goal alone. Is his contract guaranteed for next year? A problem with the 4-4-2 as it is played by this team is that there is no real playmaker.

I have been calling for Fred's benching for months. Why he is playing over Pontius is baffling unless Chris is still recovering from injury.

It was a scrappy game which helped Olsen shine. I thought that was the best he looked all season.

Soehn has had plenty of chances. He is probably a nice enough guy. But he is not the right person to be doing this job.

Posted by: fedssocr | September 13, 2009 9:23 AM | Report abuse

Fred and Emilio need to catch the next plane to Brazil. Emilio can't trap the ball if he had a net. Does anybody else wonder why TS keeps bringing in defenders and not strikers who can actually move and pass to people wearing the same colors??
Obviously, our defensive line shake-ups aren't working !! Where was McT?
This team has become a "toothless Tiger"!!
They look like they should be dangerous (with the players we have), but during the game we all find out the offense is harmless!! I hope there is a big shake up coming--- including TS.

Posted by: therealfan | September 13, 2009 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Goff: That United Rewind is perhaps the harshest I've EVER seen you write.

Posted by: redskinsux | September 13, 2009 2:03 AM | Report abuse

I for one want to thank Goff for doing what a good sports writer should do. So thank you for being hands down the best soccer writer in the country. Though I will have to say my wife courses you for a creating a forum that is basically crack for soccer fanatics.

Anyhow I also think it's a good indication that Goof senses their (being Fred, EmiliSLo and N0-go-Gomez) time is done as well as Soehn because those comments aren't gonna have any of them begging for interviews anytime soon.

Posted by: SoehntheExit | September 13, 2009 10:02 AM | Report abuse

I watched the game at "home" in Fort Benning. The truth is we have the best fans in the league--they sang through the good, the bad and the very ugly. Regardless (irregardless?) of their salaries, Fred and Emilio need to sit down. For good. They are officially done. Moreno and Gomez can only play 45 minutes a pop at this point in their careers. They should platoon the withdrawn forward position and play with Pontius. He is our best threat to score as a striker. I think Olsen can only go 60 minutes and be effective. Jacobson and/or Szetala should platoon with him. Wicks is not the same keeper he was even just 45 days ago. Kocic should start the remaining league games, and Hamid should play in the CONCACAF games to get some reps. The back line is what it is until Burch and Jackovic get back from injury.

Posted by: dcarmy | September 13, 2009 10:03 AM | Report abuse


careful...if you criticize the team, you will be considered a "fair weather fan" ;)

Posted by: birdynumnum | September 13, 2009 10:07 AM | Report abuse

Too harsh on Namoff. The man was playing the entire right side. Likewise, John was playing the whole left. Why? Because the midfield was lost in the weeds. They missed Simms, Fred was abysmal (again), and Ben is a hero, but not a very zippy one. And Quaranta was having (another) off night. I am one of the Quaranta fans, but I have to wonder if his attitude towards the coaching hasn't clouded his on-field judgment.

Oh by the way, welcome aboard to all the folks who are on the Emilio isn't worth it bandwagon. Some of us have been waiting for you for a couple of seasons now. There is no reason for someone who is paid nearly a million bucks a year to do ONE THING to fail so badly.

Posted by: ldmay | September 13, 2009 10:16 AM | Report abuse

We got to have faith. Be strong. Be United. We are still in the playoff running and have a week to cool off and recharge. Scrapp the CCL - play only reserves (I want to see Hamid in goal). Huckerby is out for the season at SJ so we got to beat them at home. Chivas USA is going to be a tough match because all their new mexican/brazilian signings will be getting form in two weeks. Again, we are UNITED. Yes are team is not looking good, but we gotta be by their side and fight with them.

Posted by: AnthonyTheGreat | September 13, 2009 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Oh, and I agree... Emilio sucks

Posted by: AnthonyTheGreat | September 13, 2009 10:24 AM | Report abuse

As a bottom line kind of guy I try not to get into the whole ratings banter. At the end of the day we lost at home (again) to a struggling play-off bound team - an ominous harbinger of the fate that awaits us if (a big IF that is) we even make the playoffs. But hey, I have no problem with the free yap-yap banter - fodder for the internets - especially if it serves as some psychological coping mechanism. so long as it does not spark dangerous delusion...

DCU is losing at home to what I would consider mid-tier table/play-off opposition. If we get in the playoffs (somehow) and meet one of the top teams, we will be out - poof - like that. I know the playoffs are about who is hot and all that, but based on what we saw on display yesterday can anyone seriously believe that this is a cup winning team?

I bleed black-and-red, but also have the gall to call an ugly baby for what it is. Yes, yes I know that it sounds cruel, brutal even - but it is what it is, sorry. Sometimes you gotta RIP that bandaid off to start the healing process.

I so want to be terribly wrong here and surprised and be made to eat peppercorn flavored crow (and I will be most happy if that becomes the case) but I simply don't see this particular side winning anything this year. Blame who you want, I have my culprits, but right now (after watching those breakdowns yesterday) I am just going to crawl-up into a ball and suck my thumb a little bit more for a few more days - hey, it helps with the pain, you should give it a try...or better yet maybe I should get into the random meaningless numbers, I mean player rating, game.

Posted by: Kosh2 | September 13, 2009 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Emilo = Worst DP Ever.

(Yes, even worse than Denilson...)

Posted by: Truck | September 13, 2009 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Oops, that Emilo guy is bad but Emilio is worst DP ever...

Posted by: Truck | September 13, 2009 10:58 AM | Report abuse

Moreno is not a starting player. He is only good as a sub. He has no energy. a 6???? I say 4. No one deserves more than 4 actually.

Posted by: DCUnitedFootball | September 13, 2009 10:58 AM | Report abuse

Namoff was caught upfield on transition on the first goal and couldn' catch Zakuani. But where was Simms? When a wide back in a four man backline goes forward on attack, one of the central defenders should sidle over and guard against a counter in the vacated area near the touchline. Simms was caught upfield also, perhaps because his "muscle memory" is of a DM. Add an unwise challenge by Wicks and you have an easy goal.

Posted by: b18bolo | September 13, 2009 11:07 AM | Report abuse

Bselig is right on. And find a coach who has a clue and management that can assess talent and not just swoon over every player born in South America.

Posted by: Shortpump | September 13, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

I don't know why you didn't give Fred a negative score. Because that was the sum total of his impact to DC's play. He loses the ball and shows ABSOLUTELY no regard for getting back. Fred sucks and you could see the game changed as soon as Pontius came in.

As for Emilio, it's a case of a marginal player getting paid big money. If I didn't know better, I would say the Redskins Front office did his contract. That much money for so little production is indefensible. If you extrapolate Pontius' performance/money, the rookie should be our DP.

Posted by: tundey | September 13, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

19500 last night? Nicely done...

Posted by: Reignking | September 13, 2009 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Fred is not good enough to play in backyard pick up games. The fact that he started for DC shows Soehn's ineptitude as a coach.

Also, why does he insist on playing Simms in central defense? Apart from GK, that's probably the most crucial defensive position. And he trusts that a MF, granted a *defensive* MF but a MF nonetheless. As a MF, you are used to having the backline cover for you. When you are now playing on the backline, it's gotta be hard to make that switch. Why not play McT?

A part of me wishes DC loses their remaining matches. At least then, the owner will be forced to make needed changes. A first-round playoff defeat will just buy Soehn and his gang of bumbling fools 1 more year to mess up our young players. Santino, Wallace, Pontius, Burch, Wicks should be started *every* single match. Even a 75% Pontius is better than Fred.

Posted by: tundey | September 13, 2009 11:18 AM | Report abuse

in case it really wasn't clear: acorns=nuts. Namoff sucked some last night.
What is the point of Namoff getting so far forward and then turning over the ball to the first guy who steps up to him? I'd agree that Namoff has been the most consistent over the season, but he was hardly a *gamer* last night.

It's the exact opposite of the Emilio effect, people sing Namoff's praises so much that they don't even notice him having a terrible game while people complain so much about Emilio they don't have anything positive to say when he does score goals. I'd also agree that United could really get more for their money in regards to the Brazilians, but that's not something that's going to get sorted out before the season ends.

I'd also like to say that Emilio is hardly the worst DP ever. I'm glad some people have forgotten about Gallardo, but that dude was angered me more than Emilio ever could.

Posted by: DadRyan | September 13, 2009 12:17 PM | Report abuse

This is how you get rid of a bad coach. You don't make it to the playoffs.

This season is dead. Long live next season, Soehn free.

Posted by: UnitedDemon | September 13, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

careful...if you criticize the team, you will be considered a "fair weather fan" ;)

Posted by: birdynumnum | September 13, 2009 10:07 AM | Report abuse

Insert appropriate eyeroll here.

Posted by: vivzig | September 13, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Found the Gijon game, stashed on ESPN Classic. No HD.

Great crowd in Gijon, though.

Posted by: Reignking | September 13, 2009 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Adu notinthe18

Posted by: Reignking | September 13, 2009 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Theme song for the off season should be "A Change Gonna Come"

I hope at least.

Posted by: FatSickBoot | September 13, 2009 12:59 PM | Report abuse

SOEHN MUST GO...and please find a foreign player with O skills who doesn't steal our money...

Posted by: jbfromfc | September 13, 2009 12:59 PM | Report abuse

Gallardo worse than Emilio? egads man that is wrong. Gallardo clearly had skills (the team was too slow). Emilio's only skill seems to be the occasional streak of luck. The fact that emilio is a dp seems like a cruel joke. kenny cooper would have been a better dp.

Posted by: PindarPushkin | September 13, 2009 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Wicks 4; bench him. Start Kocic the rest of the way.

Namoff 4, torched on the first goal, deserves more than a 3 though.

James 4, warm body

Simms 4, where was he on first goal?

John 4; warm body

Quaranta 3, useless. passes to wrong team. loses ball. his passes that actually did make it to a black shirt were passed to where the guy WAS, not WHERE HE WAS GOING. Maybe a USL-2 side could use him.

Wallace 5.5, right place at right time.

Olsen 2, Olsen a 6? you have GOT to be kidding me. Yeah, so he had a couple of shots in the general direction of the goal. Big whoop. The problem is he can't play soccer anymore. When the ball comes to him on the flank, play STOPS, because he can't move.

Fred 0;

Moreno 2, too slow.

Emilio 0. he struggles because he is slow and because his skills have all but vanished.

Subs: Pontius 5, better than Quaranta ever was.

Jacobson 5, steady

Gomez 2. he did nothing. he is done.

Posted by: Ron16 | September 13, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

I watched the game at "home" in Fort Benning.
Posted by: dcarmy

Thank you.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | September 13, 2009 1:52 PM | Report abuse

@redskinsux -- First off, Goff didn't just suddenly discover that Emilio isn't very good. He said so in a post last week -- which was a stunningly starkly critical comment for a beat reporter. Trust me, you aren't thinking something Goff hasn't already led you down the path to conclude 'for yourself'.

As for Namoff -- he was abused throughout the game, not just on the one goal. He's had a stellar couple of years, but this effort was real stinker from him. He's clearly overmatched by Zakuani.

As for the rest of the team -- you can all see the weaknesses on the field...which makes me laugh when I see the accompanying comments to fire Soehn. What does he have to work with? The only players that can do much with possession are Moreno, Gomez and,to a lesser extent, Olsen. THe first two especially -- their passes tend to get other, usually open players, even when they're being pressured themselves. Can't say that about anybody else. Quaranta sometimes. Pontius could be more dangerous in the center midfield, or with other players with any attacking sense. Every time he sent a header across the box, there was no one there to do anything with it. At some point, you have to ask "why not?" And, the lack of speed is killing the team. You see it every time Emilio touches the ball., but the team's best chance last night went wanting for lack of speed. Moreno served up a wonderful ball down the center of the box, but Olsen wasn't fast enough to get on the end of it.

Until United gets players with a nose for the goal, a good first touch, the ability to pass accurately, and some speed, they're a beaten side before they even take the pitch. It's foolish to blame Soehn - there's nothing he could have done to produce a victory last night.

Posted by: fischy | September 13, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

As for Wicks, he did seem to give a half-hearted challenge to Zakuani, but he would have been nutmegged even if he had looked more aggressive. Saw a goal just like that in the EPL this weekend. I have trouble thinking that there's much Wicks could have done. On the second goal, he did seem to react late, but I wonder if he could have stopped that one either. James got beat, but the guy who should have shut the play down was Jacobsen. He came on, and just wasn't ready -- Moreno went by him, took the pass, and the goal became inevitable.

I'm not saying Wicks is world-class, but I think ya'll are being too harsh.

Posted by: fischy | September 13, 2009 2:05 PM | Report abuse

The silver lining for DC? If the front office does their homework this off-season, they ought to have a fair amount of money and cap room to sprinkle around and bring in some talented new players.

Posted by: fischy | September 13, 2009 2:17 PM | Report abuse

If you don't think Ben Olsen has been one of our better players this year, and didn't have a better than average match last night, you should really stick to Baseball or Throwball.

We better see Szetela in action down in Trinidad, and I hope (for his sake) he scores and adds an assist or 2 as well.

Line-up for T&T


Bench: Hamid, Simms, DiRaimondo, Namoff, Olsen, Allen, Moreno

While the team flies to Trinidad, Fred and Emilio should be given one-way vouchers to fly anywhere they damn well please, so long as it's not T&T.

Posted by: alecw81 | September 13, 2009 2:20 PM | Report abuse

regarding Goff's previous entry:

For all you of you that see the world through prejudice and stereotypes, I hope this does not make your head explode.

I attended the tea party before heading over to Lot 8 to party at the Latin American Festival. I am also a DC United season ticket holder, have lived and worked extensively in Latin America, speak fluent Spanish, and agree with most of what was said at the tea party.

Shocked? Only if you categorize people into groups rather than see ing them as individuals...

Posted by: DCU4LIFE | September 13, 2009 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for calling out the Front Office on the wasted salary cap money spent on a five most expensive players with the sole exception of Olsen. I wouldn't have expected to say that earlier this season -- I'm half surprised that the man is on the pitch what with his ruined wheels. Even with busted up ankles Olsen gave us 110%.

What has McT done to sink to the "Do Not Play" list? He probably would have been a more reliable centerback than Simms. And,yes, I know that McT is nothing special. Just a gritty blue collar player who comes out to play and who usually doesn't make dumb mental mistakes.

Posted by: Stevenho | September 13, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

I cannot wait for Soehn, Emilio, and Fred to no longer be part of this team.

Posted by: Poopy_McPoop | September 13, 2009 3:26 PM | Report abuse

as for all the tea-party talk i'll sum my thought up best by what one woman said on Fox News:

"Thank the lord for Glen Beck."

I about died laughing.

Posted by: Poopy_McPoop | September 13, 2009 3:27 PM | Report abuse

PindarPushkin, no offense but I couldn't care less about what Gallardo has done outside of wearing a DCU shirt. Truck said he thought Emilio was the worst DP ever, I was simply saying that Gallardo was a much bigger disappointment in the few minutes he played for DCU than Emilio has been over the course of his time at United.

Posted by: DadRyan | September 13, 2009 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Emilio is worse. Gallardo may have been a disappointment and injury riddled but at least he was theoretically worth a dp designation. Or maybe you dont think that dp players should have any skill, flair or basically anything that makes one good, the team better or attracts fans.

many of us wanted the f.o. to take morelia's offer and run. instead they made him a dp and the team has been worse ever since.

Posted by: PindarPushkin | September 13, 2009 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Best sign I saw yesterday at the Tea Party:

(Pictures of Obama, Biden and Pelosi)


I almost walked into a car I was laughing so hard.

Posted by: KnucklesX | September 13, 2009 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Yeah... I think that dp's shouldn't have any skill, flair or anything that makes them good, the team better, or attract fans...

Theoretically worth a dp designation? WTF does that mean? Gallardo came to DC and used us. If the fact that you wasted money on one of his jerseys is keeping you from seeing that, I can't help ya man. The guy came to MLS to try to weasel his has been arse back to River. He was pathetic.

If you think that the team has been worse at the hands of Emilio getting the DP designation, you're nutz. The club has a far brighter future this season than they did at this point last year. As has been pointed out countless times, who exactly is even on the radar for becoming the next DP?

I personally think DCU shouldn't feel like they need one, I think spreading that money around would make a lot more sense.

Posted by: DadRyan | September 13, 2009 7:10 PM | Report abuse

It's foolish to blame Soehn - there's nothing he could have done to produce a victory last night.

Posted by: fischy | September 13, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Really?!? That's your assessment? Soehn is a victim of circumstance? IT's all the players fault because they lack the talent to make Soehn's vision come true. Give me an F'ing break. It's been obvious for 2 1/2 years that DC is slow and yet that wasn't addressed in the off season, this one or last. I would suspect as a head coach he would have some input there.

The serious lack of tactical nuance has been observed by on air commentators (sub mysteries) and by head coaches ("I was surprised by the line-up" etc). Hell a casual soccer fan could tell within 2 games that Emilio has no business being a post-up style forward that can bring other attacking players into the game, yet after 60 + games of it not working Soehn persists in making it work.

He basically played Seattle the same tactically as he did 10 days earlier and yep..... lost. After watching the Open Cup final it was clear Namoff couldn't handle Zakuani's speed, so perhaps go all crazy and put Wallace on the right as a defender and move Namoff to the left, match speed with speed. Do that and say have Olsen bagger that flop feast named Montero and their offensive is pretty much gone. The game was there for the taking yet Soehn stayed with what seems to be his standard "This is the way we play, so try and beat it" tactic: which is fine if you're unstoppable but DCU is far from that.

So that being said anyone at this point who blames the players and not the head coach is both foolish as well as clinically delusional. Fire Soehn, make Olsen and Jaime co-player coaches and start the building process for the next decade.

Posted by: SoehntheExit | September 13, 2009 7:57 PM | Report abuse

Kasper/Soehn have made a dog's lunch out of the DP. Reacting like little girls to Will's desk-pounding to have a DP so he could have his fancy hood ornament, they went for Veron and make a spectacle of his hiring but failed to do the due dillegence necessary to prevent the embarraing stiffing they received from him. Then, in order to justify their many "scouting" trips to Argentina and to continue to protect their "pipeline" to that country that brought such gems as Donnet, Erpen, and Filomeno, they went again for an Argie who took his rightful place along side of other MLS money-stealing hires like Mathaeus, Hermisillo and Luis Hernandez. To make it a hat trick, they freaked out over Emilio's foot stomping about being underpaid and caved into his cash demands. Forget about the future if these two stooges are permitted to continue to run the team.

Posted by: lgm6986 | September 13, 2009 8:00 PM | Report abuse

Approximately 190 days until United's first league match in 2010!

Posted by: Curious99 | September 13, 2009 8:41 PM | Report abuse

I will say the reffing was pretty bad. You had to almost commit murder to get a call. a more strict referee would have tossed Olsen. As has been discussed before he the kind of guy you want on your team because he's a prick to play against. The way he grabbed he american football style tackled several players was just shocking, but typical Olsen. I respect his contribution to the team but think he needs to step aside at the end of the season. . . .and become coach or at least an assistant.

Posted by: owendylan | September 13, 2009 8:48 PM | Report abuse

By the end of the game, many of the Screaming Eagles were chanting to have Emilio benched, including F$%I - I-AN-O and "Bench That Nut Job". The Eagles seem to be intent on preventing their members from expressing their view publicly, having tried to get one dissenter ejected for waving a sign calling for Soehn's ouster.

Posted by: DCUSince96 | September 13, 2009 9:57 PM | Report abuse

After promising myself last night I wouldn't waste time thinking about this team anymore, I've just read over both game threads . . . and saw one, just one, thank you dccal, comment about something that drove my friends and I nuts: Was it wise to do two subs late in a tied game? And can't United run some sort of special "keep possession for God's sake" play at that point, for at least 30 seconds? Because as Jacobson and Gomez ran in it looked like we must have thrown the ball straight to Seattle.

Posted by: fallschurch1 | September 13, 2009 10:18 PM | Report abuse

Two subs at once, I mean, of course.

Posted by: fallschurch1 | September 13, 2009 10:19 PM | Report abuse

...and agree with most of what was said at the tea party.

Shocked? Only if you categorize people into groups rather than see ing them as individuals...

Posted by: DCU4LIFE | September 13, 2009 2:56 PM

I am only shocked that a seemingly intelligent person would state he agreed with much of what was said at the rally. Birthers, deathers, Tenthers -- none of it bears any connection to reality. Just conspiracy-crazed kooks. And anyone who thinks the USA has a first-world, much less first-class health system does not know much about just how badly our system ranks. Reforming it to be more like all those countries with health care ranked ahead of ours would not be bad thing.

Posted by: fischy | September 13, 2009 11:03 PM | Report abuse

BTW -- I was at the street fair on F St, asn saw many of the ralliers. I can say that not all of them were lilly-white. Just about 98% or 99% of them. Of course there were exceptions, but sometimes broad categorizations are pretty descriptive. They represent a very small and growing smaller slice of America. The irony is that they seem to think they represent the real America, rather than a conception of America that has not been true for 145 years.

Posted by: fischy | September 13, 2009 11:08 PM | Report abuse

I apologize in advance for the politicalness of the following, but the more I think about it, the angrier I get.

I was a little shocked at the authorities making the man put the "Fire Soehn" sign down. I talked to him afterwards and he said that the cops, staff, and SE brass said he either gets rid of it, or he gets ejected. If it were me, they would have had to throw me out, and then big trouble ensues. 1st amendment rights anyone? Now had the sign said "F*ck Soehn," I would understand them asking for it to be removed. I remember seeing signs that said "Fire Rongen" and "Fire Hudson." The SE Tifo head Tim had a sign at the last US game that said "Donovan is a P*ssy." Where where the speech police then? Then some of the language directed at said SE holding the sign had various versions of the F-bomb -- All in front of my 5 year old son. Now tell me, what is worse? A sign that says "Fire Soehn" or grown-ups cursing up a storm around little kids?

As an SE myself, I was appalled that they made him get rid of that sign. Not sure that was the right choice of action. I may have to wear a "Fire Soehn" shirt to the next game. I wonder what would happen?

Posted by: torrey151 | September 13, 2009 11:46 PM | Report abuse

Soehn and Kasper have to go. Their management/ custodianship of this club are apalling. Second why is simms playing cb when MCT is on the bench. As for an overhaul I'm all for it. I don't care if we pull a red bull and make the championship game. There was an identity to United. Possesion, composure, creativity, thrifty purchases, championships. These things are all missing. Starting the overhaul:Gomez, Emilio, Fred, namoff, Simms, Olsen, Moreno, Janicki, Khumahlo, Vaughn, Shipilane; they are not good enough, plain and simple. Moreno and Olsen have been great, they should be kept in a different capacity. namoff tries hard, but he is a usl level defender & has been for years. Any chance we could have Pontius play as forward and Wallace as a left back that can actually attack. I was a season ticket holder in 96 and have been loyal ever since. However after watching the last two years, I am disgusted at what that team has become. Mr. chang, where is my damn stadium and where's my team, you are bordering on Peter Angelos level ownership.

Posted by: Dipssince78 | September 14, 2009 2:42 AM | Report abuse

Btw, if that sign stuff was true. Something should be done, this is not Tehran.

Posted by: Dipssince78 | September 14, 2009 2:47 AM | Report abuse

"Starting the overhaul:Gomez, Emilio, Fred, namoff, Simms, Olsen, Moreno, Janicki, Khumahlo, Vaughn, Shipilane; they are not good enough, plain and simple."

A little overboard there buddy. I think we should pinpoint the obvious weaknesses instead of saying they're all old and they all gotta go.
1.) Janicki: A no brainer. Should've been cut immediately after the Marathon game.
2 & 3.) Emilio & Fred: Two more obvious choices to either, a.) get cut or b.) bring their salaries to say around $75K/each but with the expressed written consent and statement that they will be substitutes and will have to earn and prove that they deserve to be anything more. (Personally, cut Fred and keep Emilio as a sub for really really cheap.)

I'm not sure with Vaughn or Shipilane, as I'm not familiar with them. But, everyone else including, Gomez, Olsen, Moreno, Simms, Namoff and Khumalo, clearly are not in the same category as the 3 listed above. But I wouldn't be surprised to see a couple of these guys retire or take up FO positions.


I am also appalled with your story. If that's the way the guy felt he should be able to express himself any way he wants, respectfully of course. I finally joined the Fire Soehn bandwagon a couple months ago and depending on what happens in the last few games, I think I'm at the stage now where I'd be enthusiastic about publicly supporting and coordinating a sign that says, "FIRE SOEHN" or "FIRE SOEHN NOW" at a game. I know it's "tradition" of this club not to fire a manager during the season.. blah blah. I think the fans should have that right to express their views, especially when so many of them hold the same one. I mean geez there's a guy on here who's name is SoehntheExit and at the last Seattle game the Barra didn't sing, "We're all part of Tommy's army..."

How about the last home game against Columbus? I'll make a sign and any fellow SI that wants to join me is more than welcome. I was hoping to have a meet-and-greet day with some of the loyal SI's on that day too but maybe we can kill two birds with one stone. That is, if everyone (or the majority) is onboard with our feelings about Soehn. Goff should make a public poll asking something like:

If you had the choice, what decision are you most in favor of?

A) Fire Soehn Now.

B) Unless Soehn wins the MLS cup, I want him gone!

C) Unsure right now, wait until the season ends and then I'll make a judgement.

D) I think Soehn has being doing a great job and he should definitely stay no matter what!

What I'm afraid of is if Soehn makes the playoffs and wins a game or two and the FO decides to give him another chance.

Posted by: redskinsux | September 14, 2009 4:21 AM | Report abuse

My vote is for "B".

Posted by: redskinsux | September 14, 2009 4:47 AM | Report abuse

On the first goal...wicks came out on a speedster that can't finish..yes steve Z was behind the D, but at an angle and would have needed to shoot left footed (he's right footed), or cut the ball back to his our D a chance to recover. Why would he leave his line?
Even if he thought that he could get to the ball first...when he realized that he couldn't...he should have stopped...and made himself big. Wicks was still moving when the shot was hit....a HUGE no-no in goalkeeping.

On the second...wicks looked surprised, caught off guard, not sure of his positioning..etc...etc..etc.

Go back and look at all of the goals that he's given up...and I bet least 1/3 of the goals he looks off balanced...surprised..uncertain of his positioning...awkward...etc.

Do the same for all solid starting GK's in the MLS...very few look awkward/off balance on the goals that they give up. That's because they read the game...fairly anticipate what is happening in front of them...etc...

Wicks has no soccer intelligence...a fatal flaw for a GK at this level.

Wicks is what he is...and unless Soehn is overruling our GK coach...we need to fire Mark Simpson...he just doesn't do a good job.

Perkins made it on his own...his technique flaws were obvious....and never fixed with DC...

Rimando has been much better since he's left.

We can't finish...and give up soft goals. That's a fatal combo for any team with title aspirations.

I love my boys...DC United and no team else. It sucks that we are average...

Posted by: matthewjfyoungs | September 14, 2009 4:54 AM | Report abuse

Right now DCU is below average, even by MLS standards. We are falling fast. I expect we will wind up in the bottom four or five teams. Philly will have 1st pick, but we could get a pretty good player with the 5th pick. We just need to sign him. Really to bad we did not sign Needham, as he seems to be pretty darn good. The jury is still ut on Arguez. As for Soehn, for me the disturbing part is the team has fallen off beginning in late July or August each year, even the year we won the regular-season title. It has become predictable.

@Dips -- you should see the video of the tea-baggers reacting to one brave dude with a Public Option Now sign. Apparently, this is closer to Tehran than we would like to think.

Posted by: fischy | September 14, 2009 8:10 AM | Report abuse

I'm exasperated with this team but I'm more exasperated with people who want to bench and fire everyone and have little understanding of soccer. Do we have a good team? No, we have an average team that can win sometimes but more often than not can only compete. Could we be doing better with a different coach? I would say that some ties could have become victories if Soehn had a better idea on how and when to substitute people. But let's be honest, Soehn does not have the late 90s team to play with. Instead he has to deal with a team that has a bad last line of defense and therefore requires the mid field and attacking lines to drop down and help. When we were great, Harkes, Etcheverry, Moreno and co. did not have to worry about defending because Pope, Agoos, Llamosa and Talley were not going to let people score on us. It made all the difference in the world. So it is not all Soehn's fault, the front office should also step in and provide him with better players.

Some of the people on this board were in love with Gomez and Emilio during their MVP seasons and yet now are asking for their heads on a stick. What you fail to understand is that neither of those players were actually that good to begin with. I can give you a major reason why both were able to win an MVP award: Jaime Moreno. Even now, when many people call him old and slow, Jaime gets two to four defenders on top of him when he has the ball. Why the hell do you think that is? Jaime can be benched as many people here want but guess what? A benched Jaime will still have better skills than anyone else on the squad and for those of you who fail to see that I recommend actually studying the game and seeing what good soccer actually looks like. Jaime is no longer at the age where he can blow past people and score goals on his own but he's the only player in our history that was here for the four championships we won and if he had more help around him I'm sure he could lead us (along with Ben of course) to another one.

Posted by: Benito6 | September 14, 2009 11:32 AM | Report abuse


You got a pic of that anywhere? That'd be amazing.

Posted by: vivzig | September 14, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

regarding Goff's previous entry:

For all you of you that see the world through prejudice and stereotypes, I hope this does not make your head explode.

I attended the tea party before heading over to Lot 8 to party at the Latin American Festival. I am also a DC United season ticket holder, have lived and worked extensively in Latin America, speak fluent Spanish, and agree with most of what was said at the tea party.

Shocked? Only if you categorize people into groups rather than see ing them as individuals...

Posted by: DCU4LIFE | September 13, 2009 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Don't know that anyone was really after you, dude. But since you asked...I always did wonder how the far far right managed to present itself as the bastion of tolerance and respect while walking around with Nazi signs, dressed up as slaveowners.

Posted by: vivzig | September 14, 2009 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Maybe this is a good time to close this thread...

Posted by: redskinsux | September 14, 2009 12:01 PM | Report abuse

RE Emilio:

2009 9 goals 2 assists
2008 11 goals 5 assists
2007 20 goals 1 assist

Total goal creation: 48

Emilio has had a hand in more than 1/3rd of the goals we've scored in the last 3 years, directly scoring most of them. He has 2 GWG this season, bringing our total points down to 30 without him, and out of the playoff race.

Whatever else you may think of Emilio--and however much he may stink right now--he has in the past: produced, not sucked, and has been worthy of at least some of the money he's received.

You can debate what he's worth now, and how much he may be past his prime, but suggesting that he's the worst DP ever, or cannot play the game is sheer idiocy.

Please return to your regularly scheduled rants.

Posted by: vivzig | September 14, 2009 12:01 PM | Report abuse

@vivzig: I wish I had. I was walking across Pennsylvania Avenue, over by the National Gallery. There was a huge crowd heading towards the White House, and as I was scanning over the various signs, and that one absolutely slayed me. I was at a horrible angle to try and get a shot. I wish I'd pulled the guy aside and said, "Hey, can I get a shot?"

Posted by: KnucklesX | September 14, 2009 12:40 PM | Report abuse

On the poll - a resounding A vote here.

I totally agree with making Moreno or Olsen player-coach for the remainder of the season.

Posted by: cmjhawk86 | September 14, 2009 1:14 PM | Report abuse

DCU is not congress. They can restrict your speach all they want while you are in their venue.

It's a richard move, but it's entirely legal.

Posted by: mason08 | September 14, 2009 1:45 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

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