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Football Americana Week 14: Double-header too much for DC

With the US national team storming to victory over Egypt this weekend, domestic matters may have snuck under the radar. But plenty happened in Major League Soccer in Week 14, and where better to bone up on yo' skillz than right here at SPAOTP?

The week got underway at Qwest Field on Wednesday, where DC United faced Seattle Sounders in their first of two games. "Party Boy" Chris Pontius poked United into the lead only for the Sounders to roar into a 3-1 lead with goals from Nate Jaqua (sort of) and Fredy Montero after a thumping top corner finish from Osvaldo Alonso had levelled the game. But United weren't having any of it - Christian Gomez found the bottom corner for 3-2 and a late Tyrone Marshall own goal made it 3-3. At the other end, we'd have been comparing Marshall to Papin.

No such luck second time out. United visited Colorado Rapids on Saturday and Omar Cummings netted a double as the Rapids thumped United 3-0 at altitude. Both goals demonstrated great pace and cool finishing as Colorado triumphed in a thrilling first half. Colin Clark added a third after another run by Cummings, who dominated a tired United defence throughout.

The Sounders also had a second game on Saturday, drawing 1-1 with New York Red Bulls at a drenched Giants Stadium. Juan Pablo Angel took advantage of calamitous defending to put RBNY in front. The Sounders benefited from even worse defending at the other end as Fredy Montero mugged Jeremy Hall in the corner, strode into the box and blasted in his seventh of the season.

Houston Dynamo lost their wonderful winning streak at home on Saturday. Tony Beltran was fortunate to stay on the field for Real Salt Lake after a professional foul, but it was RSL who took the lead thanks to a Fabian Espindola finish which should go down as an own goal by Bobby Boswell. Dynamo had one disallowed before Jamison Olave's second yellow card stupidly earned him a deserved sending off. RSL's Nick Rimando saved an awful penalty from Brad Davis, and it was substitute Brian Ching who earned the draw for Houston, heading home with less than a minute to go. The refereeing in this one was... unusual.

Los Angeles Galaxy visited San Jose Earthquakes in Oakland and fell to a 2-1 defeat. Greg Berhalter fouled Pablo Campos in the box and the same man tucked in an assured penalty to put the Quakes in front. Ryan Johnson poked in the second before Jovan Kirovski headed in his first of the season to drag a Donovanless Galaxy back into the game. The Earthquakes held out for the win.

And it was a freak occurrence at Pizza Hut Park, as FC Dallas picked up all three points (just kidding, Dallas fans). Eric Brunner put Columbus Crew in front, though there's a case for the goal being awarded to FCD's skipper Pablo Richetti. Eric Avila picked out a wonderful curling shot to pull Dallas level, and Kenny Cooper bagged the winner with a late, late penalty after Chad Marshall and David Ferreira came together in the area.

The week's action sees San Jose and Dallas edge a little closer to the Galaxy at the bottom of the West, while New York failed to make up much ground on New England. DC United still lead the East from Chicago Fire and Houston go a point clear of Chivas USA at the top of the West. Seattle, Colorado, Kansas City Wizards and Columbus hold the four remaining play-off spots at this early stage.

Full results and standings here.

For more great football writing by Chris Nee, visit TwoFootedTackle.com...

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