D.C. United beats Real Salt Lake in home opener

D.C. United beats Real Salt Lake in home opener
March 9, 2013, 9:15 pm
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How it happened: In the 60th minute DCU preseason pickup John Thorrington sent a seemingly innocent volley on net, which was batted down by Salt Lake goalkeeper Nick Rimando. Lionard Pajoy was waiting for the loose ball on the far side of the net and headed in the rebound to put D.C. United up 1-0.

Sweet home RFK: With the win the Black and Red add another to their 19-game (including playoffs) unbeaten streak at home. United has not lost at RFK since their home opener against Kansas City on March 10, 2013. Real Salt Lake has yet to win on D.C. turf: the club is now 0-4-4 at RFK since joining the league in 2005.

Hip Hip Pajoy: With his game-winning header, Pajoy also tallied DCU’s first goal of the season. The strike  was the forward’s 4th goal for the Black and Red and 9th of his MLS career. 

Not in my house: Real Salt Lake took two shots on target, nine attempts on goal but couldn’t get one by United keeper Bill Hamid, who was perfect on the night after allowing two goals in the season-opener against Houston last Saturday.

Oh so close: Preseason pickup Carlos Ruiz entered the match in the 83rd minute as a sub for Pajoy, his first appearance for the Black-and-Red. As time ticked down in stoppage, the forward almost netted his first goal for DCU as well as Kyle Porter sent a fantastic cross to Ruiz, forcing Rimando to make a save at close range.

No DeRo: Dwayne De Rosario sat out the second half of his two-game sentence tonight. United’s captain picked up the two game suspension after DCU’s final match of the preseason against Philadelphia where a head butt was thrown against former teammate Danny Cruz. 

Up Next: DCU will travel to New York to face Red Bull on Saturday, March 16. The two last saw each other in the Eastern Conference Semifinals, where United ended New York’s season in Red Bull Arena last November.