Major League Soccer Week 5 was full of goals and shocking results. San Jose continues to impress and for some reason, New York has realized they can win matches. Pedro Gomes has your recaps here:
Montreal Impact 2, Toronto FC 1
The Montreal Impact opened the doors to Olympic Stadium to square off against their fierce Canadian rivals, Toronto FC, with 23,120 fans behind them. Both teams came into the match looking to brighten the start of their 2012 season with only 1 point earned between the two of them in 8 league matches. And it was Montreal who jumped ahead to an early lead in the 18’.
Lamar Neagle took the ball off of Terry Dunfield’s foot in midfield and found an on-rushing Sinisa Ubiparipovic near the right side of the box, and he calmly passed it past Milos Kocic for the 1-0 Montreal lead. Montreal’s Keeper, Donovan Ricketts came up with a big save in the 37’ to deny Danny Koevermans a clear goal-scoring opportunity. Montreal would add a second goal with an outstanding individual effort by #1 Draft Pick, Andrew Wenger, in the 81’. Toronto would pull one back in the 88’ when Danny Koevermans got a near post header past Donovan Rickets from a Reggie Lambe cross to give Toronto hope. Montreal would hold on and earn their first win in Major League Soccer.
Columbus Crew 1, New York Red Bulls 4
The New York Red Bulls hit the road to face the Columbus Crew at Crew Stadium where 11,516 fans were on hand to show support. New York got off to a quick start and never looked back. Their first goal came off the left foot of Kenny Cooper in the 3’ from a nice cross into the box by Thierry Henry. Cooper get his brace in the 13’ when Dane Richard’s shot from the top right side of the penalty box was deflected by a Columbus Defender and floated into the 6 yard box where Kenny Cooper was able to get his head to it. The ball had some wicked spin on it and the header was able to find the inside of the side netting. Thierry Henry would join in on the goal-scoring fun in the 40’ when Roy Miller slipped a pass to him behind the left side of the Crew defense. Henry finished with a classic side footed shot to the far post to give NY the 3-0 lead. The Crew would get on the board in the 89’ off a Kirk Urso corner that Chad Marshall was first to get to in the Red Bull box. Thierry Henry would answer right back with another goal in the 90’ when Joel Lindpere beat his man off the dribble on the left side of the field and ran towards goal. Lindpere found an open Henry who chested down the cross and blasted a volley near post that gave Andy Gruenebaum no chance. New York left Columbus with 3 very valuable road points and the Crew asking questions of their defense.
Sporting Kansas City 1, Los Angeles Galaxy 0
Sporting Kansas City hosted the struggling LA Galaxy at LiveStrong Sporting Park where 20,323 supporters clamored for the highly anticipated match-up. Throughout the week many soccer pundits had claimed this match-up as a statement game for either team for their young 2012 season. It was LA that nearly made an early game statement in the 7’ as Robbie Keane sent Mike Magee on goal but his shot just missed the far post as Jimmy Nielsen was quick off his line to challenge the shot. LA’s Josh Saunders came up with a big play of his own in the 25’ to deny a rocket by Chance Meyers to his near post. Sporting KC would break the dead-lock in the 40’ when Bobby Convey found Kei Kamara unmarked near the back post for a nice header back across goal. LA had a great opportunity to equalize in the 82’ when he was played in behind the Sporting KC defense but he pushed his shot wide of the far post. The Sporting Kansas City defense would hold the rest of the way and end the match with a 1-0 score line. If any statement was made on the day, it was that Sporting KC remains the only team in MLS with a perfect 5-0-0 record.
San Jose Earthquakes 3, Vancouver Whitecaps 1
The Vancouver Whitecaps hit the road to face the San Jose Earthquakes at Buck Shaw Stadium where 10,525 fans enjoyed some great weather and some great soccer. The day didn’t start as well as the Earthquakes would have liked as the Whitecaps applied decent pressure in the first half and nearly scored in a frantic sequence in the 40’ but the crossbar came up big for San Jose. Then just after the break, Sebastian LeToux, put the Whitecaps ahead with a well-placed shot to the far post that beat Jon Busch. The Earthquakes would respond in the 68’ when Chris Wondowloski would capitalize on a long throw-in and a defensive error by Jay DeMerit and slip a shot past Joe Cannon to equalize. San Jose would add a second in the 72’ when Ramiro Corrales sent a dangerous cross into the box that Alan Gordon was able to beat his man to and get a head on to give the Earthquakes a two goal advantage. Chris Wondolowski would get his second of the day in the78’ following a wonderful Tressor Moreno Free Kick that got over everyone’s head but found Wondolowski on the back post. The Earthquakes held onto the lead and the 3 points at home.
DC United 0, Seattle Sounders 0
DC united hosted the Seattle Sounders at RFK Stadium in front of 15,651 lively fans. United nearly pulled ahead first in the 23’ when Nick DeLeon beat his man with the dribble on the left side of the field and slid a near post pass to Hamdi Salihi but his effort just missed the net. DC had another decent opportunity in the74’ following some nice passing interplay in the midfield before Chris Pontius eventually made an open run into the box but his shot dragged wide of the far post and the game remained scoreless. However, the best chance of the night belonged to Marc Burch and the Seattle Sounder in the last minute of stoppage time. After entering the match just moments before to a chorus of boos, the former DC Untied player almost headed home a rebound off an Alonzo bullet but his effort could only find the crossbar. The match ended in an unlikely 0-0 draw in MLS’s only scoreless match of the week.
Real Salt Lake 2, Colorado Rapids 0
Real Salt Lake hosted the Colorado Rapids at Riot Tinto Stadium for their Rocky Mountain Cup showdown in front of 16,870 supporters. RSL nearly took an early 6’ lead when Will Johnson uncorked one from the top of the box but Troy Perkins was able to parry it away in full stretch. However, Perkins couldn’t keep Alvaro Saborio off the board in the 20’ when he controlled a nice Tony Beltran cross in the box and roofed one into the near side of the net. RSL continued to pressure the Rapids and came only inches from adding a second goal on more than one occasion. RSL would eventually find the second goal of the game in the 57’ following a controversial no call on a Fabian Espindola hand-ball. The ball appeared to be played off of Espindola’s left hand on fell right into his path as he split two defenders on a Luis Gill through ball over the top. Espindola toe poked the shot through Perkins legs and RSL had a two goal lead. Colorado was only able to muster a couple of chances to end the game but their header went wide and a free kick just skimmed the crossbar. RSL racked up another 3 points in the fiercely contested Western Conference.
Portland Timbers 2, Chivas USA 1
Chivas USA traveled north to face the Portland Timbers at JELD-WEN Field with 20,438 of their closest friends in attendance. The Timbers got off to a fortuitous start as Kris Boyd put away a ball that fell out of Dan Kennedy’s grasps as he collided with his Defender, James Riley, in the box. Chivas would answer back in the 48’ when Ryan Smith sent a dangerous cross into the 6 yard box that Alejandro Moreno rose up to meet in between two Timber Defenders and put away. Chivas USA kept piling on the pressure after the goal and it eventually paid with a near identical goal in the 82’. Again Ryan smith sent in a cross from the left side of the field but this time it was Nick LaBrocca who sliced in between two Portland Defenders to get his head to it. Chivas would hold onto the lead and earn the 3 points on the road.