United vs Red Bull: Hamid, crossbar crucial in helping United escape with 0-0 draw in New Jersey

D.C. United goalkeeper Bill Hamid came up with a number of tremendous saves to help United earn a point in a 0-0 draw this afternoon against rivals New York Red Bull. United (1-1-1  4 points) had to scramble defensively at times and were on the back foot for the majority of the match against Red Bull (0-1-2  2 points) in their home opener at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, New Jersey. United were also beneficiaries of some help from the crossbar as Red Bull forward Fabian Espindola twice was denied by the woodwork.

United again struggled to put together any semblance of attack and only had a handful of chances at goal, the best being Chris Pontius’ 60th minute bid that was well saved by Red Bull goalkeeper Luis Robles. Captain Dwayne De Rosario made his season debut after serving a two-game ban for a preseason head-butting incident but was rendered ineffective by Red Bull’s constant pressure. United did manage to go t0e-to-toe with Red Bull for the first forty-five minutes but after the break it was all Red Bull.

Hamid came up with a brilliant save on a Tim Cahill effort deep into the box and then just a few seconds later defender Chris Korb saved a goal himself by beating Thierry Henry to the back post and clearing a dangerous chance. Hamid however saved his best for last when he swiped a goal bound ball out of harms way in the second minute of stoppage time at the end of the match. Replays showed no conclusive evidence that it crossed the line as the ball bounded off the chest of former United midfielder Brandon Barklage. Barklage, who scored twice  in a 3-2 win against United in their only regular season meeting last season at Red Bull Arena, chested the ball towards goal and Hamid dove to his right to swat the ball out of danger.

Hamid has now gotten shutouts in his last two matches but the offense still remains a big question mark after only scoring once in three matches.

United will now turn their attention to a home match next Saturday evening against the Columbus Crew. United defender Dejan Jakovic (Canada) and midfielder Marcos Sanchez (Panama) will not be available for the Black-and-Red against the Crew as they will be on international duty.

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