D.C. United All-Stars shine in Portland
Last night, the MLS All-Stars topped Bundesliga superpower Bayern Munich 2-1. Down 1-0 going into halftime, All-Star Head Coach Caleb Porter swapped the starting eleven for a new lineup; D.C. United’s Bobby Boswell, Bill Hamid and Sean Franklin entered the match.
“I thought all three players proved they deserved to be there; they played very well,” said D.C. United General Manager Dave Kasper. “Obviously, the group that played in the second half got a clean sheet and scored two goals. I thought overall the game was very entertaining, and we’re very proud of our guys.”
During fan voting, it seemed the Black-and-Red might be underrepresented in Portland, but as the team surged in the League, the All-Star nods came too.
“We’re third in points in the league, and there’s a reason why,” said Kasper. “We’ve got a lot of quality in this team.”
While Boswell, Franklin and Hamid earned their spots last night, United has no shortage of All-Star-caliber talent.
“There’s guys who should have been there but didn’t get called in,” he said. “You can talk about Fabián [Espíndola] who is going be in the MVP of the league conversation at the end of the year. Chris Rolfe, who to me is one of the best wide midfielders in MLS right now, and Perry Kitchen, who is emerging as a top holding midfielder in this league. We had plenty of guys deserving to be in the All-Star game.”
Along with DCU’s stars shining brightly, other moments stood out to the Black-and-Red GM. Among them: Landon Donovan’s game-winner, Thierry Henry’s touching moment and Bradley Wright-Phillips deadly strike.
The final whistle blew, but the drama wasn’t over. Bayern Munic boss Pep Guardiola refused to shake hands, angered over hard tackles and fouls in the second half.
“I don’t know what happened,” Kasper said. “Obviously, no one likes to see any players get injured, ever, especially in an event like this. But it does happen.
“I was a little bit nervous, I have to be honest about that. We knew they were going to play 45 minutes. It’s like a typical Wednesday hard training session where players are putting some good work in, getting ready for the weekend. They got out of it, and we’re pleased they walked away fine.”
In summation, last night was good television and Boswell, Hamid and Franklin represented the Black-and-Red honorably.
“It was very entertaining,” he concluded. “Probably the most entertaining All-Star game that I’ve seen.”