Chicago Sockers Defeat D.C. United 1-0
CARSON, Calif. (July 14) — A stout Sockers defense held firm to earn a 1-0 win against D.C. United in both teams’ final match of U-15/16 group play at The Home Depot Center. Despite owning much of the possession, strong goalkeeping and a hard working defense prevented D.C. United from scoring their first goal of Finals Week. Second half substitute Damien Sampson finished a strong cross from Khaliq McKenzie on a Sockers counterattack to give his team the 1-0 lead they never relinquished.
One of three MLS clubs represented at Finals Week, D.C. United began the game at the bottom of Group 1, looking to grab points in their final match. Sockers FC were a missed penalty away from earning their first win in their second game, and though the Chicago Fire had already clinched the group, both teams came out looking to earn the win.
In a clash of two styles, Sockers full-field pressure was put into action early to prevent D.C. United from stringing together many passes, disrupting their possession game. Looking to capitalize on counter attacks, much of the Sockers midfield stayed behind the ball in their half while D.C. United opened the game on the attack.
Despite their advantage in ball movement, it wasn’t until the 27th minute that D.C. got their first real shot on goal, this time off a short corner from the left side. Cody Albrecht passed the ball in to an onrushing teammate, and then stepped up towards the top of the box to take the return pass. Turning in towards the center, Albrecht looked to curl a shot into the back right post, but the effort was palmed away by Sockers goalkeeper Hugo Gonzalez. Latching onto the rebound, near the right post, Yaw Amankwa sent a header back across towards the left of the goal that Gonzalez came off the ground to palm away again, this time with his right hand. The rebound was finally clear and the score remained level at zero.
The rest of the half consisted of large moments of D.C. possession in the Sockers’ half, punctuated by crosses and balls over the top in hopes of beating the Chicago three-man back line. Five corners were earned by D.C. in the first half, but the aerial game of Chicago cleared every one.
Against the run of play, Sockers finally took the lead early in the second half, using their trademarked bend but not break defense to run a perfect counterattack.
In the 52nd minute, again in the attacking half, D.C. United earned a free kick from 45 yards away but failed to reach their players in the box. The resulting clearance fell to David Selvaggi of the Sockers along the left sideline, who turned to his right and fed Khaliq McKenzie with a centered pass to the midfield stripe. Seeing space, McKenzie dropped it off to Damien Sampson and then ran towards the right corner where Sampson sent the long ball.
After controlling the pass and attracting two D.C. United defenders, McKenzie cut towards the endline and fired a hard low cross towards the six yard box—where Sampson was waiting to smash home with one touch to put his team ahead 1-0.
Pressing to score their first goal and earn a point in the final game of group play, D.C. United earned several more chances in the half, but the safe hands of Gonzalez turned away several strong efforts.
In the 65th minute, Albrecht took a pass from Ahmed Ismail in the center of the park 25 yards from goal and again elected to shoot; his swerving shot headed left for a beat before coming back towards the right. Now off balance after his first reaction, Gonzalez got his arms back across to his left and palmed the ball away to keep the shutout alive.
Finally, with seconds left on the clock, D.C. United fed a ball in to Kennedy O’Shea, running diagonally towards goal from the left side of the box. His shot was blocked by a covering defender, but the high rebound fell to Bradley Vorv waiting right at the penalty spot. Vorv volleyed hard towards the lower right hand corner, and again Gonzalez was equal to the task.
The shutout win gives the Sockers four points in Group 1, good for third place in the group. They’ll face Internationals in the fifth place game on Friday, July 16 at 3 p.m. PT. D.C. United finishes up with one point, and will face the fourth-place finisher from Group 2, CASL Chelsea FC Academy, on Friday at 1 p.m.
Development Academy Finals Week Match Report
Match: D.C. United U-15/16 Sockers FC U-15/16
Date: July 14, 2010
Competition: Development Academy Finals Week
Venue: The Home Depot Center; Carson, Calif.
Kickoff: 7 p.m. local time
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
D.C. United 0 0 0
Sockers FC 0 1 1
SOCK – Damien Sampson (Khaliq McKenzie) 52nd minute
DCU: 1-Dakota Niedermeier; 5-Dario Redondo (23-Julian Saldana, 68), 2-Jordan Manley, 15-Jalen Robinson (capt.), 16-Marco Hurtado; 19-Alfred Wilkins (24-Michael Russo, 63), 20-Ahmed Ismail, 21-Collin Martin (22-Kainoa Bailey, 57), 25-Cody Albrecht; 6-Bradley Vorv, 9-Yaw Amankwa (7-Kennedy O’Shea, 37)
Subs not used: 8-Julian Griggs, 11-Marcus Salandy-Defour, 14-Luis Cartagena, 17-Tyler Rudy, 18-Jose Porteria, 26-Carlos Santistevan, 27-Tyler Back, 28-Dallas Aminzadeh, 32-Sebastian Cahe
Head Coach: Roberto Da Silva
SOCK: 53-Hugo Gonzalez; 50-Charles Giovenco, 26-Taylor Cole (capt.), 18-Marcin Modzelewski; 2-Andrew Chang, 27-Kei Glaser (7-Daniel Aparicio, 72), 41-Alex Wetterman, 11-Luke Comerouski (13-Damien Sampson, 41); 37-David Selvaggi, 33-Khaliq McKenzie, 46-Thomas Arns
Subs not used: 8-Michael Chang, 9-Saul Mencilla, 12-Jonathan Pothast, 17-Jason Lesch, 21-Nicholas Landsberger, 23-Adam Gatza, 24-Zachary Radwanski, 31-Patrick Schulz, 35-Jeffrey Kreutz, 42-Arman Arami, 43-Jason Kayne, 55-Jeffrey Gal
Head Coach: David Richardson
Stats Summary: DCU / SOCK
Shots:14 / 4
Shots on Goal: 6 / 2
Saves: 1 / 6
Corner Kicks: 5 / 2
Fouls: 14 / 12
Offside: 0 / 0
DCU – Bradley Vorv (caution) 66th minute
DCU – Cody Albrecht (caution) 79
Referee: Reed Christy
Assistant Referee 1: Jonathan Hughes
Assistant Referee 2: Omar Muro
Fourth Official: Sorin Stoica