Apr 13, 2013; Washington, DC, USA; New York Red Bulls forward Thierry Henry (14) gets in position for a corner kick against D.C. United defender Daniel Woolard (right) and defender Chris Korb (22) and defender Dejan Jakovic (left) and defender Brandon McDonald (back) during the second half at RFK Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Paul Frederiksen-USA TODAY Sports
It is amazing how a clean bill of health can significantly alter the fortunes for a club, both for better or worse, depending on whether that health is returning or has yet to return. When rivals DC United and the New York Red Bulls met at RFK Stadium on Saturday, they provided all too clear evidence of this fact.
For the first time this season, the Red Bulls were able to insert high-priced French striker Thierry Henry into the starting lineup after assorted niggling muscle and ligament injuries have kept him largely in bubble wrap to start 2013. At the opposite end, Dwayne De Rosario — suffering through an adductor strain — was only able to enter the match at halftime for DC United. And what a difference it made for the visitors as they fielded their first-team attack for its inaugural appearance in 2013.
Henry made his presence felt throughout the match, nabbing the opening goal just before the half-hour mark. Finding space against DC defender Chris Korb just outside the United box, the Frenchman worked the ball over to his right foot and teed off, driving a low screamer into the far side of the net. United keeper Bill Hamid guessed correctly but was unable to get a piece of the ball as he dove in vain.
Seven minutes later, New York doubled the score; even at that point, with the clever flow of the Red Bulls’ offense and the comparative ineptitude of United to make anything happen at the other end, it felt as though the visitors had guaranteed themselves two points. Juninho crossed into the box, finding Brandon Barklage for the header. But as the right back put the shot off target, there was defensive teammate Jamison Olave in position to redirect the ball past Hamid for New York’s second.
The stat lines would show DC ultimately getting 13 attempts on goal, the same number of chances New York created. But while New York proved efficiently deadly with their shots, United was unable to put anything on Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles that would make him seriously have to work for his clean sheet. The result, United’s third straight defeat, sent DC spiraling further downward in the Eastern Conference standings. For New York, their second win in the past three matches allowed them to finish the day anchored in a playoff spot as they put the woes of March behind them.
NEW YORK RED BULLS @ DC UNITED
April 13, 2013
- 29′ — NY/Thierry Henry (Dax McCarty)
- 36′ — NY/Jamison Olave (Brandon Barklage, Juninho)
- DC (4-1-2-1-2): Bill Hamid; Daniel Woolard (Kyle Porter/83′), Dejan Jakovic, Brandon McDonald, Chris Korb; Perry Kitchen; Chris Pontius, Marcos Sanchez; Raphael Augusto (Carlos Ruiz/64′); Lionard Pajoy, Rafael (Dwayne De Rosario/45′)
- NY (4-4-2): Luis Robles; Roy Miller, Jamison Olave, Markus Holgersson, Brandon Barklage; Jonathan Steele (Fabian Espindola/65′), Dax McCarty, Juninho, Eric Alexander (Kosuke Kimura/86′); Thierry Henry, Tim Cahill (Ruben Bover Izquierdo/89′)