Drilling down on: at San Jose 5, D.C. United 3
Man of the Match: With goals Nos. 9 and 10, Chris Wondolowski reassumed Major League Soccer’s goal leadership. That’s through just nine games, barely over a quarter of the way through 2012, and that’s quite a strike rate. His second Wednesday was a clean finish on a header; nine of 19 this year for the Western leaders came off a ‘Quakes noggin.
Packaged for take-away:
- Steven Lenhart had a pair as well, Wednesday, adding up to five this year. That matches last year’s goal total and leaves the curly-headed one just a goal shy of a career high (6 goals in 27 matches for Columbus in 2010.)
- Credit both coaches and clubs for leaning into the goal-scoring efforts; no cagey, tactical chess match for this one. Both clubs poured on the attack and the result was a highlight reel disguised as a soccer game ... and it was a hoot.
- Like a few other matches this year, Marvin Chavez won’t show up on the score sheet as much as some others, but his contributions were immense, easily Man of the Match-stuff as well. Even though he plays out wide in San Jose’s midfield, the speedy right-sided man finds a way to insert himself busily into so darn many offensive sequences. His active work on defense is every bit as important.
- Perfect “for instance:” Chavez won’t get an official assist for the ‘Quakes’ fifth Wednsday, but it was pretty much his goal. Chavez created just enough space for himself to squeeze off a well-aimed left-footed shot, which careened down off the crossbar and bounced in off Lenhart, who got credit for the goal.
- Ben Olsen had hoped to solve his team’s back line injury crisis by moving Perry Kitchen (with plenty of experience in the rear guard) back into central defense. But the bottom line, it seems, is that D.C. United’s defense this year will not be the same when center back Emiliano Dudar isn’t around. They were certainly in over their heads in this one.
- Marcelo Saragosa replaced Kitchen as holding midfielder, but the veteran Brazilian doesn’t have Kitchen’s range or distribution ability.
- Speaking of midfield distribution, does anyone remember a better passer or possession specialist at Buck Shaw than Tressor Moreno? Perhaps it was Geovanni during his rather short 2010 stay?
- A 35th-minute shot-save combo was as good as any you’ll see in MLS this year. Dwayne De Rosario’s wonderful bicycle kick was heading into goal -- but Jon Busch pulled off something special with his one-handed, acrobatic stop. Good stuff, all the way around.
- De Rosario did push one past Busch, scoring a beauty on a night full of them in MLS. That was No. 95, so D.C.’s brilliant playmaker is five goals away from becoming Major League Soccer’s newest member of the 100-career goal club.