A few leftovers from Friday evening's 4-1 win over FC Dallas
After a night where there were plenty of good storylines, here are a few leftovers from Friday evening's 4-1 win over FC Dallas.
BACK IN THE KITCHEN
Before kickoff against Dallas, United midfielder Perry Kitchen adequately described his role in a pre-match interview with Kyle Martino of the NBC Sports Network.
"I'm pumped to do the dirty work for him," Kitchen said when asked about playing behind Dwayne De Rosario. "Hopefully he can work his magic."
Kitchen's willingness to do the dirty work has quickly endeared him to Head Coach Ben Olsen. After playing three matches in five days with the Olympic team, Kitchen ninety minutes against Dallas and earned some serious praise from his coach.
"Not an easy week," Olsen said of his holding midfielder. "He was shot from ten minutes in. We asked a lot of him today and he gutted it out. I'm really proud of him."
ANOTHER OLYMPIC HOPEFUL
While De Rosario turned in his most complete performance on Friday, D.C.'s captain wasn't going to stick around Washington long enough to enjoy it. After the match, DeRo said he planned to travel to Toronto on Saturday where he'd watch Canada's U-23's in their Olympic qualifying showdown against Mexico.
The Canadians ended up losing 3-1 Saturday night in Kansas City, narrowly missing out on a chance at the Olympics. Had they qualified, De Rosario may have also been headed to London.
"Of course I would be honored for a call-up," De Rosario had said earlier this week. "It's any players dream to take part in world events like the Olympics and World Cup. That would be a great day for Canadian soccer."
MAN OF THE MATCH
Despite scoring four goals against Dallas, United were no less indebted to their goalkeeper than usual on Friday night. Ben Olsen called Joe Willis his man of the match in the post-game press conference, and with good reason.
The second-year goalie made a pair of impressive stops through the first ten minutes on Friday night, two big plays that kept D.C. from finding themselves in a catastrophic hole.
"If we go down early it changes the whole game," defender Daniel Woolard said afterwards. "They can play more defensive and not have to stretch themselves out. It was big. He's made big saves in every game he's played in."
Four minutes in, a miscommunication between Emiliano Dudar and Kitchen gifted Ricardo Villar a point-blank opportunity in front of Willis. The University of Denver product jumped off his line and pushed Villar's near-post attempt out for a corner. Blas Perez then split D.C.'s central backs six minutes later, but Willis was there again using every bit of his 6-foot-5 frame to deny the Panamanian striker.