United’s playoff chances take hit with loss to Crew

Crew D.C. United (Getty Images)

By FRANCO PANIZO

Another opportunity for D.C. United to make up ground in the playoff race. Another loss.

Thee days after dropping a decision to the Philadelphia Union, D.C. United lost again, falling 2-1 to the Columbus Crew at Crew Stadium on Saturday.

The decisive goal came in the second half on a beautiful diving header from Eddie Gaven, who made his return for the Crew after being injured for nearly two months. The result ended Columbus' six-game winless streak and allowed the Crew to reclaim second place in the hectic Eastern Conference.

The visitors took the lead in the 37th minute off a goal from defender Daniel Woolard, who was inserted into United's starting lineup after Ethan White was not deemed fit enough. Woolard got on the end of a Dwayne De Rosario free kick and redirected the ball with a nice mid-aired effort with his left foot.

Woolard scored again three minutes after halftime, but he did so on his own net. After Andres Mendoza took a shot at the top of the penalty area, Woolard attempted to clear the ball but it rolled into the corner of the net passed a helpless Bill Hamid to make the score 1-1.

Things got worse for United as the Crew took the lead for good at the hour mark when Sebastian Miranda found Gaven with a cross.

Rather than fold after surrendering the lead, United created a number of chances as it searched for an equalizer. It came closest to pulling level seconds before the final whistle blew when Andy Najar struck a shot off the crossbar.

The 2-1 result brought the Crew within a point of first-place Sporting Kansas City in the Eastern Conference. It also dampened United's hopes of reaching the playoffs, as it currently trails the New York Red Bulls for the final wild card spot by two points with a game in hand.

The Portland Timbers are also two points ahead of United, though the expansion team is currently on the outside of the playoff picture.

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What do you think of D.C. United's loss to Columbus? Thinking United will not make the playoffs? Expecting the Crew to go on a roll now that they've ended their winless streak?

Share your thoughts below.

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5 Responses to United’s playoff chances take hit with loss to Crew

  1. d-bar says:

    I think the Crew will make the playoffs; it’s just hard to get excited about any of the teams in the East right now.

  2. Matt (NEF) says:

    The Crew really missed Gavin. Good to see him back and producing right away.

  3. bryan says:

    this was so dumb. i was really hoping United could get a result. they go up but then fall apart. so annoying to watch. but i blame rongen, he jinxed it when he said, “I guarantee it that DCU will make the playoffs,” when we were up 1-0 (for those who do not know, he is a commentator for DCU games on Comcast Sports). i don’t even know why he would say something like that. and frankly, i don’t understand why benny can’t stick with a lineup. every game there is a new combo up top. i know injuries can cause this, but he started this game with ngwenya and davies but last game it was dero and wolff.

  4. KKS says:

    It was a pretty well-deserved win for the Crew; they dominated the game early and created a bunch of chances. The only reason DCU got a goal was because De Rosario took a nice dive at the top of the penalty area. Until about the 85th minute the Crew (notably minus Chad Marshall) had bottled DCU up pretty well.

  5. kb says:

    DC bias. crew definitely proved more in this game. DC’s been a wish-wash team all year. Crew played tight soccer up until september. the win for the crew says a lot more about that team than a loss for DC says about them. far more intriguing story, but eh, all the media like bigger-market DC.