By Zack Walford
DC United got back to winning ways, beating Philadelphia 1-0 on Saturday to heap more misery on the Union.
Philadelphia Union and DC United are two teams in very different positions, heading into this one the Union were looking to break an eight-game winless streak, while DC United saw their five-game unbeaten run end last week at home to Portland Timbers.
Within six minutes the deadlock was broken, Cristian sent the ball in, which took a deflection before falling to Chris Rolfe, who chested it down and struck it beautifully with his left foot, blasting the ball into the net past Zac Macmath. The goal was Rolfe’s fiftieth in his illustrious career in MLS.
Nine minutes later, Union had the chance to level through Andrew Wenger but the chance was wasted by the twenty-three-year-old.
Former Fulham front man, Eddie Johnson, then thought he had doubled the Washington side’s lead only to be denied by the linesman, who raised his flag for offside. Another chance came the way of Fabian Espindola but this was wide of the mark and failed to test Zac Macmath.
In the fifty-second minute, Union came close to equalising through a smart long range effort from frenchman Vincent Nogueira.
Following a bright start by the home team, they again tested the defence of DC with a corner but Nogueira’s effort was nowhere near the target.
With the game still in favour of DC United, a high through ball found Wenger again but his effort was cleared by goalkeeper Bill Hamid, who flung himself again to save the rebounded effort from Conor Casey, as DC preserved their one goal lead.
Hamid made some important catches and saves inside the closing stages of the game to make sure all three points were heading to the away team.
For DC United, they now have fourteen points and currently sit in third place in the Eastern Conference, as they head home to play bottom side Montreal Impact next weekend.
Whist Union are now on a nine-game winless run, their longest in the franchise’s history. They have the tough task of ending that when they face Sporting Kansas City on Wednesday.
Highlights via Major League Soccer’s YouTube channel: