Reality Bites DC in RFK

After the fantasy win Tuesday night in Salt Lake to win the US Open Cup, United came back to earth as their dismal league season continued with a painful 3-0 loss to the visiting Chicago Fire, United’s 22nd loss of the 2013 campaign which ties a league record for futility in a single season.
With a mixed lineup and perhaps carrying a glimmer of the enthusiasm from their improbable 3rd US Open Cup win, DC started the match quite brightly and barely missed a couple of excellent chances in the opening 20 minutes of the game.
DC would come to rue those early missed opportunities as the Fire stole the lead against the run of play in the 24th minute when Fire forward Juan Luis Anangono ghosted past DC defenders James Riley and Daniel Woolard like they were cones and slipped the ball in to Fire midfielder Jeff Larentowicz storming deep into the box on a late run that wasn’t picked up. The Fire hard man cooly slid past DC keeper Joe Willis and snuck in a wicked shot from a very tight angle to score the winner for the Fire.
The Fire essentially sealed the win with their second goal two minutes later after a Fire freekick fooled Joe Willis and fell to Fire defender Bakary Soumare to blast into the empty net to give the Fire a 2-0 lead and cast a pall over the RFK faithful.
United rallied to create ever more chances with some very lively attacking efforts rarely seen this season, but the Fire keeper Sean Johnson was up to the challenge with a few spectacular saves. Johnson denied DC forward Conor Doyle with a diving save and later sprawled to stop a blast from DC midfielder Nick DeLeon who had burst into the box to shoot from close range.
In the second half, Johnson made his best saves of the match on a wild effort in the 60th minute. Diving out to deflect a cross through the box from United forward Dwanye De Rosario, the ball fell right to DeLeon who saw his snap shot incredibly deflected by the quick recovering Johnson. DeLeon was denied again spectacularly in the 76th minute when Johnson again dove to stop a clever shot from the United midfielder.
Drained and defeated by the end, United gave up a final goal to second half substitute, Quincy Amarikwa who scored a lovely diving header from a precise cross from Dilly Duka in the 89th minute to fish off the Fire’s 3-0 win.
Already a team record 22 losses on the season, United has now tied the 2001 Tampa Bay Mutiny for the most loses in a season in league history. The Mutiny’s epically bad season ended with a record of 4-22-4. United has 3 more matches to try and elevate themselves above being the worst team in MLS history.
DC also saw its current winless streak stretch to 9 games. DC is 0-7-2 over that span. The loss also guarantees United will finish dead last in the league as Toronto and Chivas sit 11 points ahead of United with 3 games left in the season.
United hosts the Philadelphia Union next Saturday night October 12 at 7PM.

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