Sunday, September 19, 2010

Wizards Keep Playoff Pace

Last week the results went the Wizards way, this week not so much, so with teams right in front of them winning this weekend, the Wizards needed to pull out 3 points on the road against Chivas USA. A win would allow them to close the gap for the 8th and final playoff spot to 6 points, with KC still having 2 games in hand on 8th place Seattle. KC pulled out the win on the road, continuing their current good run of form and keeping them on pace for a potential playoff spot.

The first half was a boring and uneventful half that had many people dreading the second. Both sides had one decent chance, with Michael Lahoud chipping wide of the Wizards far post after holding off Michael Harrington. Almost immediately the Wizards tried to respond as Roger Espinoza sent in a great ball from midfield to Birahim Diop. But Diop had a poor first touch putting the ball right into the hands of Zach Thornton in the Chivas USA net. The biggest highlight of the first half was probably the continual harassment of Craig Rocastle by the Chivas players. Rocastle was pissed off multiple times and had to be pulled away from the referee at half time. At the time it appeared the return of red card Rocastle was imminent, but Rocastle composed himself and was not troubled in the second half.

The second half got a little bit better as each side created more chances. Chivas thought they grabbed the lead in the 52nd minute through Ben Zemanski, but as the cross came in it bounced off the arm of the Chivas player and into his path. The ball was called back for a hand ball. The game though still lacked a real urgency to it considering both teams were fighting for their playoff lives. Finally in the 70th minute KC got the break through. A great long ball from Harrington was headed almost straight up by Kei Kamara, Kamara turned around his defender and then one timed the shot past Thornton with the outside of his right foot and into the net giving KC the 1-0 lead. A great finish by Kamara certainly one to remember come goal of the year voting time.

After the goal, KC continued to control the game, but really didn't create many chances. Still a second goal did not come until the 83rd minute. Kamara played a ball over the top to substitute, Teal Bunbury. Bunbury raced onto the ball, held off his defender and fired a shot past Thornton that he had little chance of stopping, to double KC's lead. KC from that point was able to hold onto the lead, keeping Chivas' chances to a minimum and routine for Jimmy Nielsen in the Wizards net. The win keeps KC on pace with Seattle in the 8th playoff spot. The 2-0 score line does flatter the Wizards a little bit, because neither side really looked like they wanted to win this game for most of the match. The two teams both lacked any real punch going forward and the game seemed destined for a 0-0 draw until Kamara's finish.

Wizards Man of the Match - Kei Kamara - Scored a very nice first goal that should definitely be up for goal of the week, and followed that up with an assist for Teal Bunbury's goal that iced the game, giving the Wizards another road win.

Player Ratings - Nielsen 6, Harrington 5, Conrad 6, Thomas 5, Espinoza 6, Auvray 6, Rocastle 5, Arnaud 5, Kamara 7, Diop 4, Smith 6. Subs Bunbury 6, Jewsbury 5, Zusi NR.


Ron Bishop said...

Kamara's score is definitely Goal of the Week material!

He is so relaxed and clear headed while playing. It reminds me of that pop up defensive play against Giggs during the Manu U game.

Keep it up!

Reepicheep said...

Good stuff. Quite a turn around for the Wizards, still have room to peak- hopefully at the right time.

Bunbury should be starting. That's all I'll say.