Patience and concentration were key as D.C. United scored two late-match goals to overcome Inter Miami CF, 2-1, in Fort Lauderdale. The disjointed match saw a tepid first half give way to a fiery race to score the game-winner as the clock ticked toward the final whistle.

Wayne Rooney said, “Performance-wise obviously we were in full control of the game and never looked in any danger. It was just really about being patient. I think performances like this, it might look late on the eye, but it was so important that we kept with our patience… and I thought we’d done that quite well.”

What the match lacked in flow, it almost made up for in chippy drama. Miami’s Kamal Miller was shown red in the 7′ after a dust-up with Christian Benteke that downed the striker in the penalty area. The card would end up dictating much of the match. As the Herons played on with ten men, they locked down defensively and got even more physical with the Black-and-Red.

Andy Najar, Pedro Santos, Taxi Fountas, Christian Benteke, Donovan Pines, and Mateusz Klich all made attempts in the first half but just weren’t able to find the back of Miami’s net, either missing or falling victim to a talented Drake Callender.

Dixon Arroyo missed an opportunity for Miami, skying the ball and leaving Tyler Miller little to do in the first half. D.C. United and Inter Miami CF remained in a scoreless deadlock at the half.

The match really started in the second half when the Black-and-Red and the Herons both began to feel the pressure, and the action became even more chippy as both sides sought a goal.

It would come down to Donovan Pines to open the scoring for the match in the 76′. A headed cross from Steve Birnbaum found Pines right in front of the goal. Despite the confusion in the box, Pines was able to salvage a ball that hit the post and tip it across Callender’s line to score his second goal this week.

Christian Benteke followed up on Pines’ goal and doubled D.C. United’s lead in the 90′. Making a break for Miami’s end, Benteke captured the through ball from Victor Pálsson and headed it into position away from the Heron’s defense so he could easily fling a shot right past Callender.

Ian Fray answered quickly for Miami with his first MLS goal to ruin D.C.’s clean sheet. A neat backheel pass from Robert Taylor to Fray set up the shot. Fray sliced the ball through traffic to overcome Tyler Miller.

While not the most riveting match, Wayne Rooney was pleased with the performance from D.C. United. He said, “I think the important thing was obviously the win after the game midweek, where we were disappointed not to get three points from a performance point of view.”

Back to winning ways, D.C. United remains on the road to face Atlanta United on June 10th at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

Watch the highlights from Inter Miami CF vs. D.C. United

Box Score

MLS Regular Season – Game 17

Inter Miami CF: 1 Fray 90′ + 2′

D.C. United: 2 Pines 76′, Benteke 90′


Inter Miami CF: Drake Callender, DeAndre Yedlin, Sergii Kryvtsov, Kamal Miller, Franco Negri, Dixon Arroyo (Ian Fray 50′), Bejamin Cremaschi, David Ruiz, Jean Corentin (Robert Taylor 55′), Josef Martinez (Leo Campana 46′), Nicolas Stefanelli (Ryan Sailor 10′)(Christopher McVey 55′)

D.C. United: Tyler Miller, Derrick Williams (Cristian Dájome 46′), Steven Birnbaum, Donovan Pines, Pedro Santos (Ted Ku-DiPietro 69′), Andy Najar, Chris Durkin, Victor Pálsson, Mateusz Klich (Yamil Asad 90’+8′), Taxi Fountas (Jacob Greene 81′), Christian Benteke

Misconduct Summary

Inter Miami CF: Miller 7′ (red card), Jean 12′, Fray 71′, Campana 81′, Yedlin 89′

D.C. United: Santos 12′, Benteke 45’+ 1′

Featured image courtesy of D.C. United // Brad Young

BySarah Kallassy

Managing Editor

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First of all, Sarah–you got this up VERY EARLY. Kudos to you and the DP team on both how consistently you get content up and how early it goes up.

Second, Pines is turning in to such a fine player. Out of our regulars, he might have the best “closing ability” (between his speed and his stride) of any of our regular defenders. And that’s critical if you’re going to play with a back 3.

Third, it’s irritating to have two consecutive games where we’ve given up such quick goals like this–like the team just collectively turned off their brains and were just reacting to stuff.

I love Santos–his professionalism, his touch, how he reads the game. But he’s lost so much quickness and speed that too often he’s a liability as a wingback.

Brendan Cartwright

It’s nice to see Pines being a force on set pieces. Given his height, he’s got a great advantage going into them, and now looks like he’s figuring out how to be dangerous with it. Having him, Birnbaum (welcome back, captain!), and Benteke all up there at once, with Klich feeding in the deliveries? That is a legitimate weapon.

We got a glimpse of what an O’Brien-less United side is going to be like in this game, and turning loose our aerial capacity on free kicks is going to be a big chunk of the approach, I think.

Ryan Hunt

It wasn’t perfect, but three points on the road is vital in MLS.

I was worried that Miami was going to be able to quick counter in the second half, but the defense sniffed out every chance (having Miller sweeping certainly helps there). The goal against us was just a mix up between Palsson and Durkin as they both went to cut out the same lane and left the top of the box open. Can’t really fault them since they’ve been out of position for most of the season.

I’d really like to see Najar putting an end product to his dribbles. He does great with them but his shooting has been bad and he’s not getting very many key passes. Hopefully, like Taxi, he just needs a run of games where he stays healthy.

Dajome came in with a lot of fire and that was good to see. I’m still not sold on him but showing effort always makes me like a player.

If Canouse is healthy next week then it’s going to be a battle for the third midfield spot next to Klich and that’s a good thing.


Three points in the road. We will take it. Always hard in MLS and it’s good to the three points after the frustrating result on Wednesday.

I am relieved that VAR caught the red card. The tackle itself was a red card in addition to the Denial of Goal Scoring Opportunity.

I have been a Pines fan since he was in college. He has so many tools and I’m glad that he has finally had a coaching staff that 1) knew how to play to his strengths in context of a system and 2) work with him in his weaknesses.

David Rusk

I only watched the highlights but my Google algorithm tells me that USA Today is touting Donovan Pines’ hilarious goal as a top candidate for MLS Goal of the Year and even for FIFA Global Goal of the Year!


Any day now and PSG will make an offer to sign Pines to replace Messi.

[…] of D.C. United’s 2-1 win over Inter Miami by us and […]

Luis Granados

I am happy they are playing Najar at wingback. Keeping him in the back three, as they did most of last season, was a misuse of his talent.

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