United vs Montreal: United back in control with 3-0 win over Impact

After back-to-back matches on the road in which D.C. United were thoroughly outplayed, the Black-and-Red enjoyed their brief visit back to RFK Stadium with a complete and professional 3-0 pasting of the expansion Montreal Impact (5-10-3  18 points). The win for United (10-5-3  33 points) gives them their sixth consecutive home win and eighth of the season overall. Both win totals are the highest from United since the 2008 season.

Chris Pontius’ goal (9th of the season) right before halftime and Robbie Russell’s first goal with United just five minutes into the second half were more than enough on a very sticky evening in front of a season high 18,302 fans on East Capitol Street.

United started the match a bit slowly trying to feel out their Canadian neighbors to the North but once the realization that Montreal’s injury-shortened squad were more interesting in putting bodies behind the ball the game started to open up for United.

Maicon Santos stinging drive from 28 yards away in the 20th minute was well saved by Montreal goalkeeper Evan Bush. Chris Pontius and Branko Boskovic almost finished off great individual moves a few minutes later but it was a harbinger of things to come for Montreal.

Pontius put United up 1-0 in the 45th minute with a beautiful individual effort that spun MLS debutant Calum Mallace into the ground. Pontius received a pass from Dwayne De Rosario on the left flank and after a pair of sharp cut-back moves Pontius blasted an angled left-footed drive to the far post for the lead.

After the break United essentially put the game away with another goal in the 50th minute provided by the left-foot of Branko Boskovic. Boskovic’ free kick was perfectly curled and met Robbie Russell in stride who flicked it past the motionless Bush for the 2-0 lead.

After this point, United played keep away from Montreal with the  occasional venture towards goal with the mindset of forcing Montreal to chase United during the stifling humid conditions. As the game wore on the hope started to drain from the visitors and in the 90th minute the deal was sealed when substitute Hamdi Salihi poked in a rebound goal (his fifth of the season) after a nice save from Bush on Nick DeLeon.

United will have another two-week break from league action and will return to play in Houston on July 15th to begin a two-game road trip that will conclude in Columbus on July 21st..

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