There were only two Wednesday MLS games this week and they seemingly had little in common. The results, however, were all about streaks that were on the line in the games. Both streaks are amazing in their own way and both are continuing at least through the weekend.
The early game saw the Montreal Impact earn their first MLS road point as they held DC United to a 1-1 draw at RFK. While the point was a cause of celebration for Montreal, it was a source of discomfort for the home team. DC United has now gone 87 games without back-to-back wins and in the past three years are 0-10-11 in the next game after a win. After beating the Revolution on Saturday, many DCU faithful saw a visiting expansion team with a 1-5-1 record as their best chance at breaking the streak, but a strong defensive effort by Montreal and poor play by DCU prevented this.
The first half at RFK was an even match, as neither team registered a shot on goal. DC had the best chances of the half (all of them in the later minutes) and looked ready to break the scoreless tie in the 35th minute. Dwayne De Rosario showed off his footwork by dribbling through a few defenders outside the box to line up a shot that missed the net. Both teams came out in the second half firing, and Donovan Ricketts had to keep his team in the match early as he denied De Rosario twice within a few minutes on one-on-one chances. Bernardo Corradi broke through in the 69th minute as he beat Brandon McDonald to the DC back post and headed a cross from Lamar Neagle into the goal. Four minutes later, Maicon Santos equalized with a low line drive from 30 yards out that beat Ricketts and the rest of the Montreal defense. The Brazilian almost had the game winner as he seemingly converted a pass from De Rosario in the 90th minute for a goal, but he was correctly ruled offside. As the final whistle blew, the home team still had their streak while the visitors could celebrate their MLS milestone.
“More than anything right now, it is good to get a point on the road,” said Montreal head coach Jesse Marsch after the match. He also added, “maybe it could have been three tonight, but one’s ok.”
The other streak that was continued on Wednesday was the Kansas City winning streak. Sporting Kansas City was coming off an impressive win over the weekend against Real Salt Lake and looked to be walking into a tricky road trip with Vancouver followed by a down Portland team. Vancouver had the previous week off to recover from its 3-1 loss to San Jose, a game that the ‘Caps felt could have been theirs, especially after Sebastien LeToux broke a scoreless tie early in the second half. The visitors came out firing though and took control early with a goal from Aurelien Collin in the 24th minute. Collin was the final header in a series of KC passes in front of goal and he earned a goal in a second straight game. Vancouver hurt themselves early in the second half when Martin Bonjour, while under pressure from Collin, tried a backpass to Joe Cannon that was hit a little too hard and settled in the back of the ‘Caps net.
And while Kei Kamara finished off the KC scoring in the 65th minute, the home team battled in the second half. Le Toux ended Kansas City’s no-goals allowed streak in the 79th minute and, if not for some good play by Jimmy Nielsen, the score could have been a lot closer. Vancouver finished with seven shots on goal, which is not only the most allowed by KC this season but only two fewer than they had allowed all season! Kansas City continues their road trip to Portland with their win streak intact, but Vancouver fans should feel confident that their team is improving and can hang with the best teams in MLS.