Photo by Nick Turchiaro/USA TODAY Sports
By RYAN TOLMICH
Needing just a single point to secure a playoff position, Steve Birnbaum and D.C. United did what they needed to by keeping the Sporting KC attack at bay.
The rookie defender was part of a D.C. United backline that maintained a clean sheet in the scoreless draw, as Birnbaum’s defensive performance earned him recognition as SBI MLS Rookie of the Week.
Tasked with handling a strikeforce including 20-goal scorer Dom Dwyer, Birnbaum and D.C. United limited Sporting KC to just three shots on target. As a result, the Eastern Conference leaders earned a clean sheet against the reigning champions, who hadn’t been shutout since D.C. United accomplished the feat back on Aug. 23.
Birnbaum’s performance saw the defender beat out A.J. Cochran and Harry Shipp for this week’s honors.
What did you think of Birnbaum’s efforts this week? Which rookie stood out to you?
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