Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America Classifieds
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
D.C. fends off Battery to claim 12th title
by Ridge Mahoney, September 4th, 2008 6:45AM

MOST READ

MOST COMMENTED

[U.S. OPEN CUP] Nothing has come easy for D.C. United this season, so its loud, boisterous celebrations after defeating Charleston in the U.S. Open Cup were entirely genuine.

The most-decorated team in league history hadn't won a trophy since the MLS Cup four years ago, and had to fight every minute to subdue the Battery, which bounced back after conceding an early goal and withstood a chanting, swaying, smoky RFK atmosphere to nearly force overtime with a second equalizer.

Instead, D.C.'s goals by Luciano Emilio and Fred trumped a fierce Ian Fuller drive as the second-tier team looked anything but second-best in the final that ended 2-1 for United.

"Getting a chance to run around with a trophy in front of our fans, who deserve it more than anybody, is a great feeling," said D.C. United head coach Tom Soehn, who played for Chicago's double-winning team in 1998 that captured both the MLS Cup and Open Cup. "You remember that stuff. There are a lot of things you forget but situations and moments like that you remember. You want to taste that again. I hope they all got a great taste of it because there are other things that we still have to accomplish."

D.C. gets back to the business of qualifying for the playoffs Saturday in San Jose, a return trip for ex-Quakes Joe Vide and Ivan Guerrero, who since being acquired in July have helped shore up the United midfield.

Yet containing the stubborn Battery proved difficult, though D.C. stunned the USL team in the fourth minute when Santino Quaranta ran onto a Jaime Moreno through ball and as he went down under a crunching tackle, the ball bounced to Emilio, who fired it high into the top corner off the fingertips of Battery keeper Dusty Hudock, one of several former MLS players on the Battery roster.

Emilio hobbled off a few minutes later, unable to continue after aggravating a groin injury he'd suffered during league play last weekend. Rod Dyachenko came in just in time to see Charleston equalize. Ex-MLS defender Nelson Akwari played a ball that isolated Chris Williams against D.C. left back Marc Burch, and Williams evaded Burch to lay off a ball that Fuller cracked between unsighted keeper Louis Crayton and the near post.

Guerrero could have restored United's lead in the 14th minute when Quaranta's pass split open the Battery right flank but Guerrero shot into the side netting. Charleston playmaker Lazo Alavanja, whose brief MLS career included a stint in D.C, used one of his many productive possessions to fire a shot in the 20th minute that cleanly beat Crayton but hit the base of the far post.

Five minutes before halftime, Vide had to limp off and his replacement, Fred, took up his spot at right midfield, leaving Quaranta in the middle to hit numerous incisive balls. Fred narrowly missed just before halftime when Moreno's lob sent him in alone, but his chip sailed off-target, and with the last move of the first half Quaranta squandered a fine cross from Guerrero.
United got the winner in the 50th minute by taking advantage of brief indecision in the Battery defensive half. Clyde Simms played a ball forward that seemed harmless enough but Dyachenko's dummy froze the defenders and Fred took up the chase to easily beat a marooned Hudock.

Charleston continued to press. Devon McTavish blocked a Alavanja close-range shot to force a corner, which produced a brief flurry during which Crayton disappeared into a maze of legs to snare the ball. United tried to hold the ball in midfield -- Argentine maestro Marcelo Gallardo played the last 10 minutes -- but seldom did, and so retreated to the edge of its penalty area or even deeper to fend off attacks led by Alavanja and substitute David Kenga.

A scramble in stoppage time ended with a ball in the net but the goal disallowed for an a an offside ruling against Marco Reda (formerly of Toronto FC). The final whistle from referee Mark Geiger ended Charleston's quest to become the first lower-division team since the 1999 Rochester Rhinos to win the Open Cup, and gave United the 12th trophy in its history.

GAME SUMMARY:
Sept. 3 in Washington, D.C.
D.C. United 2 Charleston Battery 1. Goals: Emilio 4, Fred 50; Fuller 10.
D.C. United -- Crayton, Burch, McTavish, Martinez, Namoff, Vide (Fred, 40), Guerrero, Simms, Quaranta, Emilio (Dyachenko, 7; Gallardo, 80), Moreno (Cordeiro, 92+).
Charleston -- Hudock, Akwari, Nylen, Reda, Wilson, Alonso, Williams (Spicer, 73), Armstrong (Kenga, 82), Alavanja, Fuller (King, 80), Patterson.
Referee: Mark Geiger.
Att.: 8,212.



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
Where to Watch European Soccer    
The new European club season has started up. Here are places Soccer America readers recommend where ...
Robinho's chip is masterful    
[VIDEO PICK: Golazo] Robinho, back with the club that spawned him, scored his first Brazilian league ...
Pennsylvania has long history of Open Cup success    
[MAKING A LIST] If the Philadelphia Union beats the Seattle Sounders in Tuesday's Lamar Hunt U.S. ...
Philly's Curtin: 'I don't want to let the city down'    
[U.S. OPEN CUP: Final] As an organization, the Seattle Sounders have a brief yet rich tradition ...
All MLS teams but Sporting KC on double duty    
[CONCACAF CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Preview] MLS's five entrants take a combined 5-0-1 record into Matchday 4 of ...
Arsenal and Man City look to repeat road feats    
[UCL: Three Games to Watch] The new UEFA Champions League season kicks off with a bang. ...
What They're Saying: Michael Bradley    
"They continue to assign Canadian referees with Canadian teams playing against American teams ... It makes ...
Intentional or not, Blas Perez's goal is amazing     
[VIDEO PICK: MLS Goals of the Week] It's unclear whether FC Dallas' Panamanian striker Blas Perez ...
Spain advances to finals for first time    
[2015 WOMEN'S WORLD CUP] Spain qualified for the 2015 Women's World Cup for the first time ...
Curtin has Union on brink of first trophy    
[OPEN CUP: Final] The Philadelphia Union goes for its first trophy when it hosts the Seattle ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives