Carson City, California- The StubHub! Center, September 8, 2013 (Photos: Victor Posadas)
Chivas USA was going to play a very important game against D.C. United this weekend at the StubHub! Center. There wasn’t any playoff implication or Supporters Shield importance. This game was for pride. These two teams are the worst teams in their respected conference: the Western Conference for Chivas USA and the Eastern Conference for D.C. United. D.C. United is the worst team in the league and Chivas USA is the third worst team in the league and no team wants to end up being the worst in the league. That’s why this game was so important. This game could end up being the difference between being last or just finishing towards the last spots in the league standings.
The game began like someone would expect a game between two of the worst teams in the league to start, with many miscommunications. Neither team could create any real offense because they were so imprecise in their passing. The clearest opportunity in the entire first half was created because of an error caused by Bocanegra. Nick DeLeon had the ball on the right flank. He then crossed the ball to the middle of the box where Bocanegra and Conor Doyle were at. Bocanegra tried clearing it but missed the ball entirely and that mistake allowed Doyle to get a foot to the ball. The shot went straight towards the net but Dan Kennedy was able to make a great reaction save and block the shot. The first half ended with a nil-nil draw.
Chivas USA played a lot better in the second half. They were able to create more opportunities in their attack because their precision in their passing increased. They were almost going to score at the beginning of the second half but the D.C. defenders were able to get in front of the shots. Chivas USA was finally able to break through the nil-nil deadlock in the 51st minute of the game. Edgar “El Chore” Mejia had the ball on the right flank. He cut in towards the middle of the field and crossed the ball towards the top of the box towards Bobby Burling. Burling jumped to head it but missed it and it hit a D.C. defender and rebounded back in towards the box. “El Cubo” was able to react before anyone and shot on goal. Bill Hamid wasn’t able to block the shot and “El Cubo” scored the first goal of the game.
Chivas USA was able to hold on to the lead and win the game one-nil. Even though they started the game very flat, they were able to come back after halftime and play well enough to win a very close game. After the game, Jose “El Guerro” Real, Chivas USA’s D.T., accredited Chivas USA’s better play to the formation change he did after the 20th minute of the game. He subbed in Erick Avila for Julio Morales which gave the midfield more help. By bringing in Avila, Chivas USA was not only able to stop D.C. United’s attack but were also able to control the ball more.
Chivas USA stays home to play the Portland Timbers on September 14.