There's always some jerk that finds gloom and a bright, sunny day. Today I'm that jerk. Don't get me wrong, DC United may have not came to play. But the Rapids did their job for most part. They kept pressure on them and didn't let them get things rolling.
The Rapids went into half-time tied up at zero with DC United. They failed to put away their chances in the first half. Where's the harm in that? They risked a DC United that hadn't played well coming out of the locker room fired up and looking to show the viewers on Telefutura that they are championship material.
Luckily for the Rapids, DC United didn't come out firing on all pistons. They finally put things together properly when Christian Gomez, finally allowed by Clavijo to play behind 2 strikers and have the space to run forward with the ball, got around Simms and went forward with the ball. Drawing defenders, Gomez waited until the last moment to perfectly lay the ball up to Jacob Peterson running in from his right. Peterson sharply struck the ball on his first touch. DC United's goalkeeper Zach Wells was cheating centrally in antcipation for a cross. Instead Peterson's shot beat Wells at the inside post.
Being down 1-0 on the road, we expect a championship team to be woken up after letting in a goal. It wasn't their day and the Rapids didn't let them generate any meaningful offense. Erpen eventually put the game away with the Rapids second goal. It was a good game by the Rapids.
So what's the worry? Last year when the Roberto "El Bombardo" Brown was read carded in the match at The Dick against the Fire, they put away their one good chance. It gave me hope to see Herculez perfectly sprung free, slotting home the one good chance they had in the match. If this teams is going to show it's ready to make a run at the MLS Cup in 2008, they need to show they put their chances away when they present them self. I know it seems ticky-tack. But it's the difference between a team that barely makes the play offs and one that's capable of winning it all.
More on the game:
Jacob Peterson's winning goal against D.C. wasn't a candidate for MLS goal of the week? Are you kidding me?
It might not have won. I'm guessing one of the two Beckham goals will win.
View From A Couch
The Rapids had their most dominate performance since the opening match, while DC continued their run of play at altitude. Clavijo made 4 changes to the starting 11, benching Cooke, Clark, Keel and Burciaga in favor of Peterson, Cummings, Ihemelu, and Harvey and switched from the 4-5-1 to the more traditional 4-4-2 with LaBrocca taking up Clark's spot on the left. I questioned this change at the beginning of the game, but the Rapids proved me wrong.
My Soccer Blog : Jacob Peterson's Goal
But Peterson's strike on that crazy assist from Christian Gomez should be among the five choices this week.
My Soccer Blog The first test of Marcelo Gallardo versus Christian Gomez is over and Gomez won hands down (even if Simms tied him up most of the match).The Offside Rules If ever there was a case for a Goal of the Week write-in, Jacob Peterson's one-time screamer against DC United on Sunday is it. Goff's Soccer Insider
THE COYOTE UGLY*Everything about United's performance. ESPN's Steve Davis
5. We need more time to judge United's big Gomez-Gallardo gamble, to assess once and for all whether Colorado or United came out better. But so far it's all Colorado. United jettisoned Christian Gomez to make room for a new Argentine midfield flavor, Marcelo Gallardo. The teams met Sunday for the first time, when Gomez found a way to be a difference-maker. Gallardo never did. Clyde Simms had generally neutralized Gomez. But the Rapids' playmaker spun nicely away from Simms and hit a sweet pass that turned into goal No. 1. Later, Gomez helped keep the ball alive under heavy pressure, making way for the Rapids' insurance strike.