MLS falls to Man U, 5-2

It wasn’t exactly a banner night for our own top flight soccer league as the MLS All-Stars fell 5-2 to Manchester United Wednesday night in front of a crowd of 70,728 in Houston.

Federico Macheda, who won the match’s MVP award, struck early for the Red Devils with a pair of goals in the first 12 minutes of the match, both as a result of defensive miscues from the MLS side. Kevin Alston had a bad pass intercepted by the Italian, who easily finished for the opening score 22 seconds into the match. In the 12th minute, he got free on a corner and headed in the score from six yards out.

The MLS would seem to turn a corner towards the end of the first half, and kept mounting dangerous attack after dangerous attack, a trend that carried into the second half.  In the 64th minute, the Houston Dynamo’s all-time leading scorer, Brian Ching, scored off a clean header on a a free kick from the left side of the box, giving the MLS faithful some short-lived hope.

Seven minutes later, Manchester United would put the game out of reach with an outstanding Darron Gibson free kick from 25+ yards out. The Irishman’s shot was a lost cause for keeper Nick Rimando as the ball rocketed into the left upper 90.

Tom Cleverley scored the highlight goal of the night in the 73rd minute. Receiving a lob into the box, the 20-year old midfielder flicked it over Chicago Fire defender Wilman Conde and finished clinically to go up 4-1.

In the 84th minute, new Man U signee Javier Hernandez was on the receiving end of great through ball, and put up a fantastic chip shot from outside of the box.

Dwayne De Rosario snatched back some respectability with a great effort in the 90th minute to double the MLS total. A minute later, Brad Evans would unleash an incredible shot that went off the inside of the post, narrowly missing a third goal.

The score line on the night seems a bit harsh when you consider that the MLS actually outshot Man U 19-12 on the night, with eleven such shots on goal.

League play will start back up again this weekend, and Manchester United will head home to England after going 3-1-0 on their U.S. tour.

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