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D.C. captures first of three meetings against Red Bulls

Photo by Geoff Burke/USA Today Sports
Photo by Geoff Burke/USA Today Sports

Friday night’s clash at RFK Stadium between D.C. United and the New York Red Bulls was everything you’d want from an Atlantic Cup pairing, but it was home side D.C. that came away with a 2-0 victory.

A back-and-forth opening 45 minutes saw D.C. gain a two-goal advantage, which started in the 20th minute.

Patrick Nyarko, who was directly involved in both D.C. goals, played a long ball into the path of Marcelo Sarvas in the penalty area before squaring a pass for Alvaro Saborio, who tapped home the opener.

The Red Bulls hoped to find an equalizer before the half, but it was D.C. who doubled their lead in the 43rd minute by way of Nyarko. D.C. managed to work very well on the counterattack throughout the night, and Nyarko’s goal was a direct result of that.

D.C. United keeper Travis Worra made five saves on the night, however, the Red Bulls struggled to test the second-year player. Bradley Wright-Phillips and company couldn’t build anything substantial after head coach Jesse Marsch implemented a unique 4-2-2-2 before kickoff.

The Red Bulls return to the field Wednesday night against the Chicago Fire, while D.C. travels to Philadelphia in one week’s time to face the Union.


Patrick Nyarko was heavily involved in the D.C. attack during the first half, guiding his side to a two-goal lead against their rival. Nyarko now has three goals and an assist this season since coming over from the Chicago Fire this past offseason.


The Red Bulls defense didn’t step up in time on their first goal allowed, and Alvaro Saborio made them pay from close-range. Nyarko’s pass from distance took the opposing side’s backline out of the play completely, giving D.C. the point-blank chance to score.


Ronald Zubar’s absence due to injury led to Chris Duvall being called into action at centerback for the Red Bulls. Duvall looked very uncomfortable in a position where he has only played a few matches as a starter.


  1. Maybe when DC opens their new stadium the rivalry will get kicked back up a notch. However, I suspect the New Yok Derby will soon surpass the Atlantic Cup in intensity.

  2. This series used to be la crème of MLS, high intensity, storylines, the barra brava always really loud… Those days are clearly gone. Unfortunately I see no reason to watch anaemic matches like this.

    • Wow. The soccer itself wasn’t the best on either side; but I thought the supporters actually did really well last night. In fact, right before DC’s second goal, I’d say it was the loudest I’ve heard the supporters be since 2006 or 2007.

      • Plus, it’s not easy to produce a great atmosphere in that dump. What a dreadful place to watch a game. That new stadium being built?

  3. It’s starting to look like the story of this season for DC United is going to be headlined “Which DC United Team Will Show Up This Week?”

  4. Vamos United. Glad the attack is showing signs of life. Now it’s time for Olsen and the squad to show some consistency if DCU is to matter this season.

  5. Curtis’s utter failure to shore up the back line after losing his two starting CBs doomed this team.

    By the way, is Veron ever going to matter?


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