WASHINGTON – A different opponent brought a similar tale for the Colorado Rapids, who - for the fourth time in a row - fell behind inside the first 15 minutes on their way to a fourth defeat in a row.
This time it was D.C. United who were grateful for an early gift en route to bouncing back from two road reversals to top the Rapids 4-2 on Sunday night, in front of 12,814 fans at RFK Stadium.
Luis Silva scored his sixth and seventh of the season, a career high, with his first just 12 minutes in. Left back Taylor Kemp – filling in for an injured Chris Korb – dispossessed Colorado midfielder Nick LaBrocca 30 yards from goal and played a lovely through ball with the outside of his right foot to a streaking Silva. Silva cut back before chipping his effort over the outstretched arms of Colorado goalkeeper Clint Irwin.
Rapids defender Drew Moor – who marked Silva on the goal – left the match shortly after with a right knee injury, and is a doubt for the midweek visit of LA Galaxy to Dick's Sporting Goods Park (TICKETS).
Colorado entered the match needing points to climb into playoff position in a congested Western Conference and applied pressure through the opening 45 minutes. Deshorn Brown’s eighth-minute attempt from 15-yards out and a Dillon Serna effort 20 minutes later would both be handled easily by United keeper Bill Hamid, who also proved up to the task moments from the half-time whistle when midfielder Vicente Sanchez turned a cross goalward from close range in stoppage time.
Serna served-up a treat in the 52nd minute, though. Colorado rookie Jared Watts - on for the injured Moor - headed a Hamid clearance towards Serna, who struck an absolutely spectacular volley up and over the United keeper, without hesitation, from 35-yards out.
United took a crack at answering with a trifecta of opportunities just minutes later. Nick DeLeon’s delicate through ball found Silva seven yards from goal, but his attempt missed by inches, and Sean Franklin’s follow-up effort was driven directly at Irwin. Two minutes later, United forward Fabian Espindola nearly got on the board, his chipped effort eluding Irwin but finding the woodwork.
Their pressure paid off in the 66th minute when Franklin collected a loose ball just outside the area, finding Silva outside the six. The former TFC man made no mistake with his finish, slotting the ball into the side netting at the far post.
Kemp would get his second assist of the night on United’s third goal. The University of Maryland product embarked on a 40-yard run on the near sideline, eventually playing a driven cross to Chris Rolfe, who hammered a low attempt home in the 81st minute. Just minutes from the death, Espindola would get United’s fourth, smashing one home from 17 yards out.
Colorado pulled a goal back in stoppage time when Brown headed home a Dillon Powers cross at the goal line, but it was too little, too late.
Colorado will next take on the Galaxy at home on Wednesday evening, in a night where Jamie Smith will be honored, and fans will get their last opportunity to see Landon Donovan in action at Dick's Sporting Goods Park before he retires at the end of the season.
MLSsoccer.com Men of the Match
|Rank||Player||What We Saw|
|1||Luis Silva||Two exquisite finishes (set up by his spatial awareness) paced United. Without Eddie Johnson, Silva found himself farther up the field and took advantage.|
|2||Fabian Espindola||Looked rusty in the first half. Looked like an absolute nightmare to defend in the second and was unlucky to only get one goal.|
|3||Taylor Kemp||Lots of trade speculation when it comes to DC and left backs, but it's looking like that'll just remain speculation after a banner game.|