The Black-and-Red fell to the Houston Dynamo 3-1 on a stormy Saturday night at RFK Stadium. While United found the scoreboard in the second half and created quite a few chances, head coach Ben Olsen and company couldn’t overcome their early 3-0 deficit.
Houston opened the scoring early thanks to a diving header by Andrew Wenger in the 6th minute. The forward beat his mark in the box then headed the goal downward past United goalkeeper Travis Worra after a well weighted cross from midfielder Alex.
“For me, it comes down to the first goal,” Bobby Boswell said. “You know, you can’t give up a set piece goal.”
In the 15th minute, Alex sprinted past the United defense to find forward Mauro Manotas for the finish. Two minutes later, Dynamo forward Memo Rodríguez headed home a goal on a cross by Alex to bring the tally to 0-3.
“We were not ready to start the the game,” Olsen said. “When that happens, I can look at myself and maybe take some blame on that. We’re in Seattle three days ago, that maybe had something to do with the start. It’s no excuse. Poor start, down 3-0, the game’s very difficult at that point.”
United didn’t give up, putting the ball in the net in the 62nd minute thanks to a brilliant cross by the end line from Lloyd Sam which was headed home by veteran defender Bobby Boswell. The goal was his first since October 2016. But he knew his individual effort wasn’t enough.
“We have to do a better job...fighting for each other,” Boswell said. “We must figure it out as a group or we’ll die individually.”
Nick DeLeon made his return for United, playing his first minutes since April 15, coming on for Sébastien Le Toux to start the second half.
“[Olsen] just told me to find a spark and flash, so just to go in and bring some high energy to help to turn the game around and my mentality was that when I got the ball to just try and make something happen—go forward, I definitely went back a little bit too much," DeLeon said. "My mentality was just to push and bring energy to the game.”
United return to the road next week to play Minnesota United on Saturday, July 29 at 8 PM ET.