It was a game of two halves, wasn't it? That, or a game of two hit posts, a game delay and a missed penalty.
United fell 2-1 to Chivas de Guadalajara tonight at RFK Stadium in its first game in Group A SuperLiga play. Chivas got goals from Omar Arellano (24th minute) and Gonzalo Pineda (72nd minute), while United's lone tally came from Luciano Emilio's foot (76th minute). Both Emilio and Devon McTavish smashed the woodwork during the game and Jaime Moreno missed a penalty kick in the 78th minute - his first miss, as far as I can tell, since 2004 (in MLS play, at the very least).
The team has a very short turnaround and will begin preparations for Atlante immediately, as they will visit RFK Stadium on Tuesday evening (8 p.m. ET).
UPDATE: A ton of post-game quotes follow...
D.C. United Head Coach Tom Soehn
On how Chivas responded after the 19 minute stoppage in play
They responded really well. The momentum had really changed. It was very disappointing when the lights went out because it gave them a chance to recuperate. Because I told the guys that after the second half they were going to lose their legs a little bit and I thought they didn’t. Our play got better. We made some adjustments late in the first half. Closed the middle up a little bit but we started to take it to them and unfortunately when the lights went out they recuperated a little bit.
On moving Devon McTavish into midfield
Yeah we moved Clyde [Simms] to the middle a little bit and the extra guy there was really hurting us. When Devon moved up it clogged things up a little bit.
On the beginning of the game
Yeah they [Chivas] put a lot into it. We seemed to lose a guy in the middle and gave them possession more than I’d like. I thought when we adjusted it actually closed the door a little bit on that and we were able to keep the ball. But against good teams if we create opportunities we have to finish them. It’s unfortunate; we were a little unlucky with the post. It’s not too often a keeper is able to stop Jaime [Moreno]’s PK so the loss is disappointing but we can’t hang our heads, we have to come out now and get a couple of results to make sure we advance.
On D.C.’s injuries
We pretty much have 18 guys. Not have many guys to choose from.
On Jaime Moreno’s missed penalty
With all the penalties he has taken in his career, sooner or later he’s going to miss one. I like his percentages though.
On the foul that led to the game-winning free kick
The foul I thought was a soft foul. When you watch the way the flow of the game was going, [the referee] wasn’t calling many of those soft ones. You don’t want many of those soft ones called, even if it’s for you. So it’s disappointing. He had a good shot too. But we had our chances and against a good team you have to finish your chances.
D.C. United goalkeeper Zach Wells
On whether or not he got a hand to the second goal
Just a tiny bit but not enough to redirect it enough. It was pretty close to the crossbar it dipped just below at the last second.
On how the team responded after the first half
I think our whole second half was pretty good. I think we dictated a little bit more. The power outage kind of slowed our momentum a little bit. The second goal – I’m not certain about the foul being called to be honest but that’s the way soccer goes sometimes. You have to make the best out of what you’re given. I thought Luciano [Emilio] had a great goal. We had a chance to tie it but they’re keeper made some great saves so you have to tip your hat to that. But most people would agree we had a lot better second half. We responded pretty well to the second goal. Coming out of halftime we had a little bit more fire, more energy.
On Chivas’ first goal and its offense
On the first [goal] had I had a couple of guys coming off the back four and when they’re able to play balls in uncontested that presents a little bit of a problem because we had four guys in the back, they had five in the midfield and we weren’t quick enough to adjust to their formation and to stay with their runners. But they’re a very good team. You saw in the first half they were much sharper but combined with our ability to control the ball in the second half I think that was the difference.
D.C. United forward Jaime Moreno
On his missed penalty
He came away from me in the end, in the last second. I had picked my spot, I didn’t change it. He did well waiting for me. I picked that spot and like I said he made a great save.
On being down 0-2
We did well. I had a chance to make it 2-2. And before that Devon [McTavish] had a chance too and [we] hit the post twice so it was one of those games. On the positive side we worked really hard, we never gave up. Now we have to rest, go to practice and I think Tuesday’s a very important game for us.
D.C. United Midfielder Fred
On the game
We weren’t very lucky tonight because we had a lot of chances to score and didn’t finish. They, however, found two opportunities and finished.
On the missed penalty
I have a lot of confidence in Jaime [Moreno] because since I’ve been here I’ve never seen him miss a penalty kick. We always trust he’ll score but today he was unlucky the goalkeeper saved it.
D.C. United forward Luciano Emilio
On the game
They came out well and caught us off guard, but the important thing is that we reacted. We had a chance to tie and even to win but couldn’t do it. Now we have to get ready for Tuesday because if we win we’ll be close to advancing.
On the lack of goals
I don’t think it’s a problem for us. Today we wasted many chances. But we always score goals, today we just lost concentration and went down 0-2 and it’s hard to come back from that.
On the team’s play
I think we’re alright. Today we let the draw slip but if Jaime Moreno’s penalty kick had gone in it might have raised our confidence and gotten the win. So we can’t analyze the play of the team based on this result because we did well.
CD Guadalajara Head Coach Efrain Flroes [via translation]
On the team’s response after the delay
Probably when the lights went off, my team recovered a little bit because it’s our first game playing under this intensity. Just two weeks ago I had the players coming from the national team, and it’s a hard game. We beat a real strong D.C. United team.
On the importance of Ramon Morales
He is very important to us, because the rest of the team has the speed and Morales the talent. He has the ability to slow down the game, and change the rhythm of the game.
On the game
Firstly, it was a very intense game. The first half, we had excellent control of the ball, good movement off it, played in depth, and we could have scored one more goal. The second half, we met a very different D.C. They had more players attacking, which generated a few chances. We are lucky to have won this game against an excellent team. They have great quality players and it is well managed. This is our very first game to have played under this intensity. So, congratulations to my players for it.
On the rivalry between nations
We try to win every game, regardless of where we play. Despite us playing an American team, the most important thing always is that the rivalry stays in the field, and outside of it we are friends.
On the current team
The organization has a very clear philosophy. Since they are nine years old to the first team, all players know the way they have to play the game. The institution provides a lot of money to raise and teach our children. Therefore, when one player leave the first team, he gives an opportunity to another player. Since the methodology is the same for every division, they adapt fairly easy.
CD Guadalajara midfielder Gonzalo Pineda [via translation]
On D.C. United’s play
It’s a team that has always had important people up front, fast players: Moreno and Emilio are players that can get behind you. So the truth is we’re very happy because we beat a great team.
On the flow of the game
We did what we had to do. In the first half we pushed forward a lot more, we had more looks at the goal. In the second half, we let them get too far into our defense. Maybe if we had more possession during the second half we would have gotten more scoring chances.
CD Guadalajara defender Hector Reynoso [via translation]
On the importance of SuperLiga
It’s very important because of the level of play found in these tournaments. We face big teams we respect a lot like D.C. United, Houston and Atlante. More than just being a pre-season tournament, we’re here to leave a mark.
On the level of play in MLS
It’s not an easy league like it’s often thought. Their level has gone up a lot, their players fight the whole 90 minutes, they’re very organized and fast. Truthfully, they make us play at our maximum.