Washington, DC (SportsNetwork.com) - D.C. United will aim to keep their run of positive form going on Saturday when the club welcomes Columbus Crew SC to RFK Stadium.
United enters Saturday's clash on the hunt for a sixth consecutive match without a loss to stay atop the early Eastern Conference standings. Last time out, United snuck past Vancouver Whitecaps FC with an impressive 2-1 win at BC Place.
United fell behind after just two minutes when Octavio Rivero sent a cross- field pass to a wide-open Pedro Morales, who cut inside and chipped it over the head of United goalkeeper Andrew Dykstra.
The traveling side found an equalizer, however just seven minutes later when Bobby Boswell got on the end of a set-piece delivery from Michael Farfan and nodded it into the bottom left corner, leaving 'Caps goalkeeper David Ousted with no chance for a save.
United then grabbed the winning tally with 26 minutes to play when Chris Rolfe found himself in the right place at the right time to hammer home a laser- strike on the half-volley from the top of the penalty area.
"We're certainly happy with the three points. It's not an easy trip to come out here and take anything away," said United head coach Ben Olsen. "Obviously, the red card helps. But I thought up to that point, we were in good form. I'm just happy for the guys to come out with the win."
Columbus, meanwhile, is also looking to continue positive form after dismantling the Philadelphia Union, 4-1, on home soil last weekend thanks to a pair of goals and an assist from Ethan Finlay.
Crew SC opened the scoring after 21 minutes when Tony Tchani sprayed a long ball down the right flank for Finlay to chase. Finlay sent a looping cross to the back post where Kei Kamara controlled with one touch and slotted it past Union goalkeeper John McCarthy.
It was 2-0 for Columbus in the 32nd minute when Waylon Francis sent a cross into the box that fell between Union defenders Steven Vitoria and Fabinho, allowing Finlay to sneak in and knock it home. The hosts then put an exclamation point on a stellar first half in stoppage time when Meram collected the ball on the left flank, drove into the box and let one go that bounced off McCarthy and rolled into the net.
"I think this was a case of, from the outside, the perception might have been that he���s not at the top of his game and Ethan has been working so hard," said Crew SC head coach Gregg Berhalter. "Internally, we have been happy with how he has been playing and we knew that he had it in him. We talked to you guys that he is ready for a breakout because he has been training really well and having impacts in the game."
"It was a great 90-minute performance from us," added captain Michael Parkhurst. "The guys up front played really well tonight. We moved the ball very well, connected passes, got everybody involved like we wanted to before the game started and scored some great goals."