- The Washington Times - Wednesday, July 20, 2011

It’s been a tough few days for Charlie Davies. Not only was he snubbed for the upcoming MLS All-Star Game against Manchester United, but the usually reliable forward failed to convert a penalty kick at the game’s halfway mark against the New England Revolution on Wednesday night.

The miss proved costly. United (5-6-8) went on to concede a late goal and lose 1-0 to the desperate Revolution (4-9-7) in 91-degree heat before 15,597 at RFK Stadium.

Davies, who has a team-high eight goals, was 4-for-4 on penalty kicks going into the game.

New England’s Stephen McCarthy made sure of his chance on goal, sending a header past United goalie Bill Hamid in the 73rd minute to give his team its first win in 10 games and end United’s five-game unbeaten streak.

Midfielder Dwayne De Rosario, who orchestrated much of United’s attack, nearly rescued United late with a fine shot, but the Revolution’s Matt Reis made a huge save.

United fell to 2-3-5 at home. D.C. has not won at RFK since beating Seattle on May 4 and hasn’t beaten New England since Oct. 16, 2008.

This was certainly a turnaround for the Revolution, the last place team in the Eastern Conference coming into the game. On Saturday, New England failed to post a shot on goal for only the third time in club history in a 2-0 loss to the Philadelphia Union.

Davies, who looked to be struggling at times with his speed and positioning, came close to scoring in the 16th minute with a low shot from inside the box that Reis stopped with a fine save. Two minutes later, Reiss had to make another big save on De Rosario.

United dictated play for most of the game, but the Revolution tested Hamid in the 31st minute with a powerful shot from Zak Boggs.

Just before halftime, United got a break when Revolution defender Pat Phelan handled the ball with arm inside the 18-yard-box trying to stop Josh Wolff’s shot. Referee Michael Kennedy awarded a penalty kick. Instead of notching his ninth goal of the season, Davies blasted the ball high over the goal.

It all went wrong for United in 73rd minute when McCarthy beat defender Ethan White to the ball and headed a cross from Chris Tierney passed Hamid.

Fred came off the bench to replace Wolff near the hour mark. It was the Brazilian midfielder’s last game for United before returning to Australia to play for Melbourne Heart.

In the 71st minute, United’s newest signing, midfielder Austin da Luz, came off the bench for Chris Pontius. The 2010 first-round draft pick from Wake Forest got a decent shot on goal with his first effort that Reis stopped.

• John Haydon can be reached at jhaydon@washingtontimes.com.

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