10 August 2006

First Impressions - DC United 1 : 1 Real Madrid

Here I am, at the Beach, in my hotel room, and thanks to technology I get to watch the game live at 11PM. I've heard the complaints about MLSLive.TV, but for me, it is wonderful. It is a great world when I can catch a game like this.

The game was an enjoyable one. United showed very well in the first half, but it was clear by about the 55th minute that Real Madrid was the team with the distinct edge in quality. There were at least three occasions when I was convinced that the Galacticos had taken the lead for good (culminating in Balboa's 85th minute volley) yet somehow DC United stayed in the game, and then would manufacture a chance or two (Moreno's run in the 88th minute was a thing of beauty).

As friendlies go, it was fun to watch. DC United represented well, even if Real Madrid was clearly better. Still, I enjoyed it. DC was dangerous, and earned the draw.

In terms of taking this forward, I wonder about DC's intensity. United was up for this game, every player was up for it. You can't tell me that this was the same attitude that was shown against Chicago a few weeks ago, but it should have been. DC must have this intensity in every game from now until there is no season left. Remember, and build.

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At 10 August, 2006 01:55, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I enjoyed this game...sold out crowd of 50,000 in Seattle. We watched Beckham in the first half with a very nice pass and some good intensity. Roberto was fun to watch and of course Cassano's goal after receiving a yellow card was fun to watch.

We of course were dissapointed to see Beckham not return after the half...the cynics in us imagined him on a plane back to Europe during the 2nd half. But Robinho inspired and of course DC United provided a good showing overall. We had so much trouble finding a spot to park we left in the 85th minute, missing Moreno's rally. But all in all, it was good fun and a clear sign that Soccer is going big time in the US. Thanks to teams like DC United..with some respect as well! Soccer coach and Dad.

At 10 August, 2006 03:29, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was there too - good game,good crowd (though about half arrived late), a thrill to see some of the biggest names in soccer. I've read two reports on the game,one from the AP and one on the MLS site - both remember Real's goal differently from me - wasn't it Beckham that sent a sublime 60-yd ball right onto Cassano's chest who then took it inside and surpirse everyone with a blast to the near post?

At 10 August, 2006 04:49, Anonymous Matt said...

Actually the crowd was 66,000+...the largest crowd ever for a soccer game in the northwest.

I was real proud of the way dc played and VERY happy the Nowak went for it. So we rest guys the next MLS game or take 2-3 days off of practice. The experience that our players got from playing vs. Chelsea and Madrid will be a huge benefit.

It was funny...at one point my buddy (who is not an MLS fan) turned to me and said..."dude..I think DC is better than the US National Team"....kind of funny.

I don't think Madrid expected DC to be that good...and clamped down in the second half.

we were very lucky to not concede a few more goals...credit Perkins..our whole team defense (did anyone notice Adu racing back to stop a counterattack in the second half? if he's any less committed and we'd have given up a 1v1 from about 40 yards)...and some terrible Madrid finishing.

It was a GREAT experience and DC really showed well for the MLS. I know that my buddies were real surprised that an MLS team could play that well...meaning..a skillful brand of soccer.

AWESOME goal....and especially in the first half we had some real nice combination play.

Real's goal exposed a defensive problem that DC will have against top quality opposition. With a flat back three instead of four we are succeptable (sp?) to well placed through balls and well timed runs.

Most MLSers don't have the skill to split Namoff and Boswell like that...nor do forwards have the experience to time their runs like the Madristas.

Credit to Nowak for not changing the way we defend just for this match...had this been a meaningful game I'm sure he would have switched up.

It's hard enough to stay compact and still cover the flanks with flat back three...but against the quality of Madrid we really should have paid the price more often...but hell...i'll take the tie.


At 10 August, 2006 05:00, Anonymous Matt said...

Funny story...would have been even funnier if I'd beaten his ass...

In the beer line at half...a guy was wearing a Celtic jersey and talking shit about the MLS.

I calmly asked him if he'd seen the DC/Celtic match...he said no..how'd it go...I told him 4-0 DC and he didn't believe and asked how that could happen

Well I told him...it appears that DC is a pretty good team and that Celtic is not...

He just launched into a tirade about how shitty american players are...Premiership is the best...he'd rather watch Oprah than an MLS game...

All the usual shit...

Man I hate the US soccer fans, that are self hating posers...

What really pissed me off is how the Seattle fans were cheering for Madrid....uhh..dudes...do you support US soccer...or SPANISH soccer?

A Mexican friend of mine was laughing at the Madrid support...he said he'd be all in for any Mexican team (unless it was Chivas...he's an Americanista) that was playing Madrid...uhh... cause he's MEXICAN...and SUPPORTS his country's soccer!!!

But...and this is another cool thing in DC's performance...the crowd really warmed up to DC after a bit and I'd say cheered equally for both teams.

Alecko really sent us going nuts...

Great...Great stuff...MLS is growing...we just all need to be patient with the slow people who don't get it (those self hating posers...)

Drink up D!!!!

At 10 August, 2006 09:59, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I loved it when the Comcast crew asked Piotr why he was leaving the first team in the second half and if they could expect to see any substitutes. Dumbfounded by the question he replied, "this is Real Madrid for Crissakes!"

At 10 August, 2006 11:36, Anonymous bdr said...

D, I agree w/you about the intensity. I thought Madrid came out willing to let DCU burn off their adrenelin, and it did burn off, but not till the second half. That first half was a terrific half of soccer. And a wonderful DCU goal.

If United plays in the league with the urgency it played in the first half last night then United wouldn't often be in the position of trying to hold 1-0 leads late into games.

At 10 August, 2006 13:43, Anonymous Paul said...

Great performance by DC, but not the grounds crew. Could the field have been in any worse condition? The turf was visably undulating in more than one location. It looked like the old Vet.

At 26 November, 2006 14:48, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very cool design! Useful information. Go on!
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