Partido dos in this little experiment, bringing together the loose strands...
DC United 2:2 Kansas City Wizards
KC: Kamara (30'), Lopez (PK, 90+')
DC: Moreno (PK, 67'), James (82')
Your Friendly Neighborhood United Bloggers...
BLCKDGRD: "One last Soehn bashing: After doghousing Szetela since Kevin Payne wasted a player allocation on him, Soehn starts Szetela over Benny in the most crucial game of the year, GUARANTEEING at least one substitute. Yes, James headed in the second goal, but he headed it in WHEN HE SHOULDN'T HAVE BEEN ON THE FIELD because he was playing on one leg and Soehn didn't have a substitute in his pocket. The one fracking time this season Soehn NEEDED to bunker and bring in an extra defender HE COULDN'T, and in the most important five minutes of the season United essentially played with only two defenders, which led to Fred's handball on a poor clearance off a corner."
DCUMD: "When the final whistle blew, it didn't feel real. And you could see that on the players' faces as well. It was as if they were each asking themselves: 'How did we get here?' How did we take a team with this much talent, and drop so far so fast? You'd be hard pressed to find somebody who would argue that the 2009 DC United team was not better than the 2008 DC United team, yet they were in the same exact position at the conclusion of the season. One point out of the playoffs. Was that because of mismanagement? Poor coaching? Lack of production? Lack of effort? Officiating? Injuries?"
Kick This!: "United had some good moments in the first half, and two near goals courtesy of James and Gomez. Nevertheless, KC seemed better at applying pressure and being quicker to the ball. And there's an intangible thing, this playing-like-a-team thing with players that know each other and can anticipate where their teammates are going to be. This thing that KC had and United, come the final match, did not."
Yours Truly: "Go ahead. Admit it. You saw that coming didn't you? I mean, I wasn't prepared for Julius James to limp his way to late almost-glory in a target man role only to have his effort negated by a stoppage time PK (Fred giveth PK's, and Fred taketh them away). But based upon everything leading up to that point, this one felt pretty much exactly like last year in Columbus, didn't it? Last game of the season. Needing a result. Playing reasonably well. Pinging the post a couple of times. Season over."
The Fourth Estate...
Tenorio (WaPo): "The result not only left D.C. out of the postseason for the second consecutive season but also likely will result in wholesale changes this offseason, and could spell the end for United Coach Tom Soehn. [...] Soehn may not be the only casualty this offseason, however, as several highly-paid veterans might also not be back in a United uniform next season."
Kitchen (MLSNet.com): "Needing a win to keep their MLS Cup Playoffs chance alive, D.C. United allowed a Claudio Lopez penalty kick in second-half stoppage time to force a 2-2 draw in front of 10,385 fans at CommunityAmerica Ballpark."
@mshund (that's me!): "James attempts the not-often-used 'decapitation cross.' Wallace fails to get in the way..."
@joebob991: "This result so far is my fault. I was only wearing my jersey and hat. I have since put on my scarf to boost the level of play."
@NattyBo: "I fucking hate soccer. See y'all next season."
Not terribly much to look forward to is there? The season is over in all respects. We fought on three fronts this year and managed to to fall at the last hurdle in each, though to be fair, we were stumbling through large portions of the Champions' League and the MLS season.
Now the reckoning approaches.
Chang promised accountability for results at the end of last season. Those results haven't come. So when do the heads begin to roll? Soehn? Emilio? Fred? Strength and conditioning coaches? Kasper? Is Payne untouchable?