- The Washington Times - Sunday, April 9, 2006

The drab play matched the weather in D.C. United’s 2-0 victory over Chivas USA at RFK Stadium before 11,930 yesterday.

United captain Jaime Moreno scored both goals, while Chivas felt a little robbed after a key call late in the game.

In the 84th minute, Chivas won a free kick just outside United’s 18-yard box. Midfielder Juan Pablo Garcia took the spot kick, beating goalie Troy Perkins. The ball hit the underside of the bar, bounced down behind Perkins and then hit the far post before returning to safety. But the television replay seemed to show that the ball had crossed the line.

“Yeah, I saw the replay, and it was probably over the line,” Chivas coach Bob Bradley said. “Anytime you see a little bit of green [between the ball and the line] anywhere in the world, it’s called a goal.”

If the call had stood, the game would have been tied 1-1.

“It shouldn’t have been a foul anyway,” United forward Alecko Eskandarian said, “so justice was done.”

Regardless of the call, United was able to finish of Chivas when Moreno fired home an insurance goal in the 91st minute after some fine work from second-half substitutes Jamil Walker and Freddy Adu.

In the first half, both teams had few chances though Chivas looked like a better team than when United (1-0-1) beat them 3-0 at home last season. But just as he did in the recent 2-2 tie with the New York Red Bulls, United coach Peter Nowak was forced to make key changes at halftime.

“I will be getting gray pretty soon if I have to keep changing the lineup at halftime,” he said.

Nowak replaced forward Lucio Filomeno with midfielder Clyde Simms, and it seemed to shore up holes in United’s midfield.

Moreno, United’s leading goal scorer last season with 16, finally gave the game some life with a goal in the 59th minute.

Midfielder Christian Gomez set up the goal by releasing Moreno with a perfect pass. Moreno collected the ball and pushed it forward with plenty of space and only Chivas goalie Brad Guzan to beat. Guzan beat Moreno to the ball, racing out of his 18-yard box, but his attempted clearance rebounded off Moreno’s leg and sailed into the empty goal.

“He had an impact on the game, and it was good to see him come on in this fashion,” Nowak said.

Said Moreno: “I was close to the keeper, and sometimes you have to expect what’s going to happen. This time I was lucky. I think it’s the first goal I have scored like that, but I will take it.”

There was no luck involved in Moreno’s second goal.

Adu sent a pass to Walker on the left flank, and he lofted a perfect cross for Moreno, who side-footed the ball past Guzan from close range. It was the 96th goal for the Major League Soccer’s second-leading all-time goal scorer.

“It was a frantic game and could have gone either way,” United midfielder Brian Carroll said. “They had some chances and so did we, but in the end we finished two.”

Alecko Eskandarian started the game in place of Adu on the left flank. In the 33rd minute, his powerful his left-foot volley from Filomeno’s cross sailed over the bar. It was nearly a repeat of his goal against the Red Bulls.

Surprisingly, Adu did not start despite having two assists in his last game. The 16-year-old finally came on in the 76th minute, replacing Christian Gomez.

“I did expect to start, but I didn’t,” Adu said. “So no matter what, you do what your role is. Today my role was to come in and make an impact.”

Late in the game, Adu had a great chance to score in a one-on-one attack with the Chivas goalie, but his shot was blocked.



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