Real takes five-match win streak to D.C. United

D.C. United coach Ben Olsen said his team 2 draw against Chivas USA.

Another performance like that Saturday against Real Salt Lake, and United may not want to sneak into the playoffs this season.

United settled for the draw against Chivas USA, which had lost four straight, after blowing a two-goal lead and missing a penalty kick in stoppage time.

Dwayne De Rosario and Ethan White scored for D.C. (8-8-11), but a brace from Juan Pablo Angel tied the match, then De Rosario had his late penalty saved by Chivas goalie Dan Kennedy.

"I should've buried it," De Rosario said. "I feel like I let my team down."

D.C. has still played fewer games than every other team in Major League Soccer so far, meaning although it sits two points behind the Portland Timbers, it is within reach of one of the league's 10 postseason berths.

But for United to accomplish that goal, Olsen was adamant the club had to find its identity over the remainder of the regular season.

"We have got to look at ourselves in the mirror after this one, because it was an unacceptable performance from the start to the end," Olsen said. "We played like boys, not just the second half. I thought the first half we played soft, we played naive.

"I don't know if we should've been up 2-0, but we were, and to tie that game is absolutely ridiculous."

United settled for its seventh draw at home, and it has accumulated just 16 of a possible 39 points at RFK Stadium this season. A win over streaking RSL this week could provide the response Olsen wants.

But if Real shows up, the match could show Olsen his team is not ready for the postseason, even if it would mark a huge turnaround from last season when D.C. had the worst record in MLS.

Real (15-7-6) had three goals in the first half Wednesday to defeat Red Bull New York, 3-1, as it ran its winning streak to an MLS-best five this season.

RSL also had a four-game win streak earlier this year, and goalie Nick Rimando admitted after the midweek victory the club "is kind of clicking right now."

However, Rimando also added: "I don't think we are playing our best but we are playing good and we are playing good at the right time."

Real managed the win at New York without Kyle Beckerman, who should be back in the lineup against United.

Even without its midfield leader, Fabian Espindola bagged two goals and Alvaro Saborio added one goal, and the duo are tied for the team lead with nine goals apiece for Real this season.

Real coach Jason Kreis said after the match: "Our group was ready to play this game and New York wasn't."

And the latest result for RSL has Kreis confident that his side can compete in the postseason, and challenge for its second title in the last three years.

"I think that we have demonstrated clearly over two years what we are capable of winning some games and going on runs," Kreis said.

"I believe that we should be considered as contenders for the championship and that is how we think about ourselves."