Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySoccer World DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America ClassifiedsGame Report
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. stays alive but fate is unknown
by Ridge Mahoney, October 21st, 2009 7AM

MOST READ

MOST COMMENTED

[CONCACAF CHAMPIONS LEAGUE] It came out of Mexico with a valuable point yet not until Thursday will D.C. United know whether a 1-1 tie at Toluca is enough to push it into the Concacaf Champions League quarterfinals.

A stunning goal by Chris Pontius provided United with a 1-0 lead in the sixth minute and though it pressed for additional goals, instead Toluca equalized with an Israel Lopez penalty kick in the second half to wrap up first place in the group with 13 points. United, which rebounded after losing its first two group matches, stands at 10 points and leads third-place Marathon by a point.

D.C. holds the head-to-head tiebreaker advantage and will advance at the expense of Marathon if the Honduran club doesn't beat pointless San Juan Jabloteh (0-0-5) in Trinidad Thursday.

Pontius scored a spectacular goal, his second of the competition, from well outside the penalty area to give United hope of an historic victory: no MLS team has won a competitive club match in Mexico. Luciano Emilio nodded a long Steve Cronin goal kick in Pontius' direction, and the rookie out of UC Santa Barbara controlled it with his chest and teed it up with a touch to belt a searing half-volley out of the air and into the top corner.

Cronin had already rescued United, by slapping away a dipping shot from Nestor Calderon. An offside decision in the 26th minute that looked dubious annulled a goal that Raul Nava put the ball in the net. Before halftime, Cronin also saved a low shot by Issac Brizuela and D.C. escaped again when Nava's header beat Cronin cleanly but came back off the crossbar.

Toluca, which needed only a point to advance, finally equalized in the 62nd minute. Lopez, just into the match as a substitute, faked Lawson Vaughn, who tripped him with a lurching tackle. Lopez easily smacked home the penalty to tie the game.

Dejan Jakovic and Christian Gomez came on for United, and Gomez got free for a header that nearly restored the lead but his shot flashed wide. Cronin stopped Nava in the late going to leave United's fate unresolved yet with a credible result on its ledger -- and some more momentum heading into its MLS regular-season finale Saturday at Kansas City.

Oct. 20 in Toluca
Toluca 1 D.C. United 1 Goals: Lopez (pen.) 62; Pontius (Emilio, Cronin) 6.
Toluca - Talavera, M. de la Torre, Gamboa (Esquivel, 57), Duenas, Almazan, Romagnoli, Marin (Lopez, 59). D. de la Torre, Calderon, Nava, Brizuela (Mancilla, 68).
D.C. United - Cronin, John, Vaughn, McTavish (Gomez, 68), James, Szetela, DiRaimondo (Jakovic, 63), Fred, Khumalo (Wallace, 46), Pontius, Emilio.
Referee: Geoffrey Hospedales.



No comments yet.

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




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
Holiday: 'I am excited for a new chapter of my life'    
U.S. midfielder Lauren Holiday, who scored the third goal in the USA's 5-2 win over Japan ...
U.S. women to be honored at New York parade    
New York will host a ticker tape parade for the U.S. Women's World Cup championship team ...
What They're Saying: Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer    
"Our newest soccer champions represent an opportunity for New York to recognize that heroes and role ...
ICYMI | MLS: The wait for Pirlo ends    
Is one of the greatest Italian players in history worth a reported $9 million over 18 ...
Average attendance down at Canada 2015    
While the total attendance of 1,353,506 for the 2015 Women's World Cup in Canada set a ...
TV Report: BeIN Sports draws 1.5 million viewers for Copa America final    
BeIN Sports averaged more than 1.5 million total viewers on its two networks for the Argentina-Chile ...
MLS Power Rankings: Sporting KC retains first place    
Sporting Kansas City kept the top spot in Soccer America's MLS  Power Rankings after sitting out ...
Scouting Report: USA opens against reshaped Catrachos    
The USA begins its Gold Cup title defense against a familiar foe, Honduras, in the second ...
2015 Gold Cup Schedule    
The 2015 Gold Cup opens with a Haiti-Panama and USA-Honduras doubleheader in Group A on Tuesday ...
TV Report: One World Sports to air weekly NASL game    
The NASL has entered into a multiyear agreement with One World Sports to air an NASL ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives