MLS Playoffs: D.C. United vs. Red Bulls (Match Night Commentary)

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The New York Red Bulls have made the trip down I-95 to take on D.C. United in the Eastern Conference playoff semifinals, which kick off tonight in first-leg action at RFK Stadium (8pm, NBC Sports).

D.C. United enters tonight’s match on a seven-match unbeaten streak, riding a strong defense and the attacking efforts of Chris Pontius, Branko Boskovic and Nick DeLeon to a strong finish despite losing reigning MLS MVP Dwayne DeRosario for the rest of the regular season with an injury.

The Red Bulls enter having posted consecutive shutouts to finish the season, with Hans Backe settling on a new back four of Heath Pearce, Rafa Marquez, Markus Holgersson and Connor Lade. That quartet will have the task of trying to contain Pontius, who scored five goals in three matches against the Red Bulls this season.

Backe has decided to bench forward Kenny Cooper despite Cooper coming off a two-goal effort against Philadelphia, and an 18-goal regular season. Sebastien LeToux gets the call up top alongside Thierry Henry.

SBI will be providing live commentary on tonight’s match so please feel free to share your thoughts, opinions and some play-by-play in the comments section below.

Enjoy the action (Commentary is after the jump):

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38 Responses to MLS Playoffs: D.C. United vs. Red Bulls (Match Night Commentary)

  1. A says:

    And that’s why Bil Hamid is a joke. Tries to flop and ends up own goaling it.

  2. MemRook says:

    I should know this but I don’t recall: do these series include weighted away goals?

  3. Rabid RBNY says:

    I know a player with just one knee and he plays better than Bill Hamid.

  4. TomG says:

    All the offensive firepower in this game and we have 2 own goals… Nice.

    • TomG says:

      Of course, for sheer style points, you have to say Miller’s finish was far classier than Hamid’s.

      • Georkt says:

        That was a brilliant strike by Miller, an upper corner rocket. As for Hamid, his equalizer made up for his brilliant play in Chicago. The life of a keeper.

  5. A says:


    He attacked a referee!!!!!! HE ATTACKED THE REFEREE

    • MemRook says:

      Bud. Calm down. No way is that in any way an “attack”. It was dumb. And it was right he was sent off. But get real with that attack talk.

  6. TomG says:

    This game just turned into a comedy of errors.

  7. MemRook says:

    As a neutral, I love it when there’s drama. One might argue its just passion manifested. Love it.

  8. Rabid RBNY says:

    Why not put all strikers on the pitch?

  9. A says:

    Starting LeToux over Cooper is easily the dumbest thing that’s happened this game. And we’ve had two own goals, a missed PK and a red card for throwing the ball at an official.

  10. TomG says:

    NYRB impotent even up a man.

  11. TomG says:

    Dive by Pontius? If so, dumb move. He looked like he was in.

  12. A says:

    I hope Arlo White never refers to Hans Backe as a silver fox again.

  13. MemRook says:

    Are everyone else’s comments being moderated all the time? I heard it was true the first time, but this is hardly my first time (lol). Hell, I’ve been commenting on SBI since ’05

    • g-dub says:

      I’ve been commenting on SBI for +4 years too, and just recently got moderated after the new web format.

  14. TomG says:

    Nobody loves missing goals more than Pajoy. Nice effort there, though.

  15. MemRook says:

    Uhhhhhhhhhhhhhh……back pass, no?

  16. A says:

    Looked like he was toe-poking that out of bounds and Pajoy hits it at the same time at Robles.

    DC United is in complete whine mode right now.

  17. TomG says:

    Great effort by Lindpere, but he seemed to be the only NYRB with any intensity out there (W the exception of Robles)

  18. A says:

    Ben Olsen’s b1tch and always a victim attitude has clearly bled down to his players.

  19. Sabella says:

    Backe will certainly be fired. Why does he continue to tinker with so much at stake? Dax is the team’s holding central midfielder. Period. The Red Bulls win when he is in the middle. Cooper should have started up top. Yes, “he needs good guys around him”, and ironically, he has good guys around him and 18 goals to show for it. Conor looked like a liability tonight. He needs a talking to.

  20. slowleftarm says:

    Super defensive mindset from the beginning from Hans, even with that the team defended poorly and NYRB was unbelievably lucky to go in 0-0. Connor Lade was absolutely dreadful at right back again. Dude offers a little something as a winger but he’s just not a full-back. He’s a total liability. Don’t understand why Hans continues to play him there instead of Barklage or even Solli.

    Having said that, the team battled and I’m hopeful of getting a result on Wednesday.

    Have to say after watching Najar’s petulance tonight, I’m not too upset that he’s a traitor to our country. Don’t need that kind of nonsense in WCQ.

    • Mwing09 says:

      A traitor to our country?? He was born to Honduran parents, in Honduras, and didnt move to the US until his teens. Never once did he even say he would play for the US. And all of a sudden he’s a traitor? Some people that comment on this site have a bit of the crazy.