DC United hat-trick hero Luciano Acosta wins Alcatel MLS Player of the Week

On Sunday he played a starring role in one of the most dramatic moments of the 2018 season to date, and on Tuesday Luciano Acosta was named the Alcatel MLS Player of the Week.

The D.C. United playmaker bagged the first hat trick of his MLS career – in fact it was his first multi-goal game as well – on Sunday, leading the Black-and-Red to a dramatic 3-2 win over Orlando City SC that sustains D.C.’s hopes of a late-season run to the MLS Cup Playoffs.

The victory at Audi Field was capped by Acosta’s stunning stoppage-time winner, the result of an incredible play by Wayne Rooney, who sprinted half the length of the field to slide-tackle Will Johnson and drop a searching long delivery onto his teammate’s head at the far post to send the rain-soaked home fans into delirium.

Acosta opened the scoring in first-half stoppage time, linking with Rooney on a beautiful give-and-go at the top of Orlando’s penalty box before outwitting several defenders to slam a rising finish inside the near post.

After the Lions equalized, Acosta restored United’s lead by touching a lofted Yamil Asad pass underneath Joe Bendik just before the goalkeeper crashed into the diminutive Argentinean in the 64th minute.

Dom Dwyer would draw the visitors level yet again, only for Rooney and Acosta to connect yet again with their last-gasp dramatics six minutes into added time. It marks the latest goal scored in stoppage time to complete a hat trick in league history.

Acosta now has four goals and nine assists in 18 games started this season; United are 4-2-2 when he registers a goal or assist. The Black-and-Red are also 3-1 in their first four games at Audi Field.

United return to action on Wednesday when the Portland Timbers visit their new home ground in Southwest D.C. (8 pm ET | TV and streaming info). D.C. also have another home match on Sunday, against the New England Revolution (7:30 pm ET | FS1 – Full TV and streaming info).

The Alcatel MLS Player of the Week is chosen each week of the regular season by members of the North American Soccer Reporters. The organization includes print, television, radio and online journalists who cover domestic men's soccer in the United States and Canada.

Series: 

Stay connected: The all-new, completely redesigned, FREE official MLS app is your best mobile source for scores, news, analysis and highlights. Download:  App Store  |  Google Play