Kick Off: DeRo becomes seventh to hit MLS century mark
Add a seventh name to Major League Soccer’s 100-goal club.
After waiting more than three months between his 98th and 99th career goals, it took Dwayne De Rosario just a week to reach the century mark, rising to head Nick DeLeon’s cross into the back of the net on Wednesday night vs. New York before celebrating in his trademark herky-jerky manner. (WATCH)
It was a goal that didn’t come without considerable risk. Even if De Rosario reached the ball first, there was still a good chance the charging Bill Gaudette would clean his clock – inadvertently or not – in an attempt to prevent the go-ahead goal.
“I figured, I’m either going to wake up tomorrow wondering what happened or I’m going to put it in the back of the net,” D.C. United’s captain said after the match. “It was a play I was willing to take.”
Jeff Cunningham, Jaime Moreno, Landon Donovan, Ante Razov, Jason Kreis and Taylor Twellman are the only other players to accomplish the feat in the 16-year history of the league.
Unfortunately for De Rosario and D.C., the 2-1 lead the goal provided didn’t stand up.
That was thanks to Red Bulls defender Wilman Conde, whose blistering drive in the 88th minute found the top corner to give New York a 2-2 draw in the final match between the two sides this season (HIGHLIGHTS).
For the second straight game, Conde didn’t line up in his customary central defensive position, slotting in on the left and impressing head coach Hans Backe with another well-rounded performance.
In other D.C. United news, manager Ben Olsen was fined an undisclosed amount Wednesday for his postgame outburst after his side's 1-1 draw against the Union on Aug. 19.
The draw moved New York within a point of first-place Sporting KC in the Eastern Conference. D.C. are now tied with Chicago on 41 points (FULL STANDINGS).
Meanwhile, while the I-95 rivals were battling to a draw, the Columbus Crew snatched a late 2-1 victory against the Union that moved them within two points of a playoff berth and effectively ended Philly's playoff hopes. (HIGHLIGHTS)
Even playing a man down for half an hour after goalscorer Josh Williams saw red, the Crew still found a way to extend their winning streak to three games, as Eddie Gaven slotted the ball past Zac MacMath with just 30 seconds left.
“Playing down a man and absorbing that much pressure and still countering for a goal?” rookie goalkeeper Matt Lampson said. "That’s the mark of a playoff team."
The Union weren't so hopeful about their postseason hopes, admitting the loss probably means a November spent at home rather than fighting for MLS Cup.
Chivas USA and New England rounded out the MLS action on Wednesday night, playing to a wild 3-3 draw that saw the Revs jump to a 3-0 lead only for club legend Shalrie Joseph to lead a rousing comeback against his former side. (HIGHLIGHTS)
Joseph scored twice in his return to Gillette Stadium to spur the rally, saying afterward that he told his teammates to keep fighting lest they suffer the same kind of embarrassing lose inflicted at the weekend by Seattle. The Revs, on the other hand, were left frustrated by yet another poor result defined by lapses.
Chivas USA also announced some big news on Wednesday, revealing Jorge Vergara had taken full ownership of the club.
The biggest news on Wednesday, however, came in Portland, as the Timbers formally announced what had been rumored for days: University of Akron coach Caleb Porter will take the reins from interim manager Gavin Wilkinson at the end of the season.
Although Wilkinson and owner Merritt Paulson took stock of a number of candidates, they kept coming back to Porter, who will finish the 2012 season at Akron before taking over in the Rose City.
"It became clear to Gavin and me for a variety of reasons that this guy is the right guy," Paulson said. "The right guy to grow this team. Just a unique talent. This is about trying to build something special. There's not many people who have the capability and talent that he has."
Read Armchair Analyst Matt Doyle's thoughts on the hire. He likes the move for a variety of reasons, but it isn't all good news for Timbers fans.
It could be good news for Rapids fans, however, as one top recruit who was set to play for the Zips could reconsider his future.
Across the Atlantic, Maurice Edu's future is close to being decided. Stoke City got word that they can move forward with the American's work permit application, but he is still unlikely to be available this weekend against Wigan.
On the flip side, Clint Dempsey's fate is still far from certain. Time is running out for suitors to swoop for the unsettled forward, and The New York Times sums up the current situation with just hours left in the summer transfer window.
Carlos Bocanegra is still sorting out his future as well, with Rangers boss Ally McCoist saying the club would like to hold onto the experienced center back.