Sunday, October 21, 2012

Crew Rd. 33, No Playoffs

DC United eliminated the Columbus Crew from the playoff picture last night, winning 3:2.

Even though DC came out hungry in front of 19k at RFK it was the Crew that scored first when Eddie Gaven cleaned up a failed clearance for a goal in the 7th minute. Most of the jawing and fouling stopped with Gaven's goal but the intense play continued.

In the 39th minute 1st year player Nick DeLeon cleaned up an Andy Gruenebaum perry to tie it up, but the knotted 1:1 scoreline did not last long. The Crew's Jairo Arrieta sent a right footed blooper in on Bill Hamid goal that clanked off the post but ricocheted off Hamid's heel into the net. From there the Crew only held their 2nd lead of the match.

The frenetic pace of the first half continued but you got the sense that Columbus just didn't have another goal in them as they aren't use to playing a full 90 at full speed. The effort and heart were there but the quality just wasn't for the Crew. The two shots on goal the Crew did have were goals so technically Bill Hamid did not have to make a single save on the stat sheet.

DC kept the tempo up and put 5 shots on frame in the 2nd half. Two of them went in. Marcelo Saragosa with one low and past Gruenebuam's left side to tie it up and one from Lewis Neal in stoppage time that caught the Crew pushing forward in desperation.

• Who schedules a team awards ceremony before the end of the season? The Crew. Can't seem to find DC's and Houston's is scheduled for November 27th.

• Crew Defending : Awful over last 10 games with a Goals Against average of 1.60 a game, same rate as New England over the past 10.

• Only Portland, Chivas and Toronto worse than that.

• Crew made a handful of changes over the course of the year that cost them a shot at the playoffs. Managing to go from one of the best defending teams in August to one of the worst in October is mindboggling.

• Plenty of time to sort this season out now that it is effectively over but I will say that the quality to beat teams above them in the table was lost somewhere around the time Jairo Arrieta and Federico Higuain joined the club.

...makes the September 5th 0:2 match at New England particularly meaningful. The only club lower on the table to beat them since April.

...the last time the Crew managed to beat a team above them on the table was 15 games ago, July 21st. Against DC.

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