WASHINGTON — Reigning league MVP Dwayne De Rosario scored two goals and heaped more misery on Toronto FC as a rampant D.C. United won 3-1 at RFK Stadium on Saturday night. The result represented TFC's ninth straight loss of the campaign as the nightmare start to the 2012 continues for the Reds.
GOAL: DeRo strikes after 55 seconds
It was United's second win of the season against Toronto, with De Rosario reaching five goals on the season after his first-half brace.
Forward Danny Koevermans pulled a goal back for the visitors in the second half, but their hopes of earning at least a point were dashed two minutes later, as DC designated player Hamdi Salihi found the back of the net for the fourth time in his last five games, to seal the 3-1 win.
United’s opening goal came just 57 seconds into the match, the fourth quickest goal in team history. Toronto conceded a free kick on the left hand flank, and from 40 yards out, Branko Boskovic whipped in a curling ball which was headed home by De Rosario from eight-yards out, as D.C. came flying out of the traps.
Toronto created their share of chances the rest of the first half, but failed to find a vital breakthrough that could have helped them earn their first point of the season.
Jamaican striker Ryan Johnson had a header over the bar, and the diminutive Joao Plata sent a free kick straight at DC goalkeeper Bill Hamid before De Rosario scored his -- and D.C.’s second -- on the stroke of halftime.
United quickly changed the point of attack through Josh Wolff, and the veteran found a streaking Chris Korb down the right flank. The right back’s cross landed for De Rosario at the far post, and TFC goalkeeper Milos Kocic could not prevent the ball from going in, despite getting his gloves to it.
In the second half Toronto refused to go quietly, as they came out and pressured United from the whistle, looking to find a way back into the game. Johnson went close with a header, before connecting on another header at the far post which went straight to Hamid.
Toronto’s persistence paid off in the 71st minute as Koevermans, a halftime substitute, tallied his second goal of the season. A Toronto free kick bounced in the box and after United failed to clear, the Dutchman was perfectly placed to tap the ball home and give his team a lifeline.
Yet all hopes of grabbing a point for Toronto were dashed moments later, as Salihi put the Reds out of their misery after Andy Najar set up the Albanian for the goal. Taking control of the ball in the Toronto box, Najar weaved past several defenders, got to the touch line, and then sent a pass towards the middle that Salihi placed over Kocic for the 3-1 lead.
United, with 24 points from 14 games, concludes their three-game home stand with a tilt against the New England Revolution next Saturday. Toronto head back home to host the Philadelphia Union in league play on Saturday, but not before facing Vancouver for the Amway Canadian Championship title in midweek.
WATCH FULL HIGHLIGHTS
MLSsoccer.com Men of the Match
|Rank||Player||What We Saw|
|1||Dwayne De Rosario||DeRo is finding top form once again, with another two goals and a perfomance full of attacking panache.|
|2||Hamdi Salihi||Classy finish for United's third goal and worked his socks off up top. Showing his talents a clinical scorer.|
|3||Julian de Guzman||Tried to keep his side ticking over, with little help in the middle. Chipped in a great ball for Koevermans goal.|