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D.C. United defeats Orlando City in dramatic comeback

Sportsnaut
Jul 12, 2022; Austin, Texas, USA; A detail view of an Adidas soccer ball before the game between Austin FC and the Houston Dynamo at Q2 Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports

Chris Durkin and Taxiarchis Fountas both scored in second-half stoppage time to lift D.C. United to a dramatic 2-1 victory over visiting Orlando City in Wayne Rooney’s MLS managerial debut on Sunday.

The dramatic late turnaround snapped United’s four match winless run, the last three coming after the former Manchester United and England star was named D.C.’s new manager.

Rooney was not permitted to officially take charge of United (6-12-3, 21 points), where he previously played in 2018 and 2019, until his visa paperwork was finalized earlier this week.

Fountas’ goal, on a first-time volley of Kimarni Smith’s cross in the fifth minute of stoppage time, was his team-leading 11th goal of the season.

Durkin’s, on another one-time finish from Ola Kamara’s service only three minutes earlier, was his first since returning from St. Truiden in the Belgian first division.

Rafael Romo made three stops for D.C. the same week the club traded for another goalkeeper in David Ochoa.

Junior Urso scored his third goal of the season all the way back in the ninth minute for Orlando (8-9-6, 30 points), which lost for just the third time on the road this season.

Pedro Gallese made two stops for Orlando, which has now lost two straight and is winless in its last four but remains in fifth in the Eastern Conference.

Alexandre Pato contributed his fifth assist of the year for the visitors, who were swept in the season series after falling 5-3 at home earlier this month.

Pedro Gallese best stop came in the 61st minute on Fountas, who hammered a one-time volley from close range into his trailing leg.

That was as close as D.C. came until the late drama.

First Smith found Kamara wide to the left of the penalty area, and Kamara drove a low cross toward the penalty spot where Durkin hammered a finish in stride into the top left corner.

Not long after play restarted, Martin Rodriguez began the next goal-scoring attack with a probing long ball to the same left corner. This time Smith hit the cross on the volley, and Fountas guided a gentle finish into the bottom right corner to send the home fans into delirium.

–Field Level Media