Major League Soccer, Week 4: Thierry Henry Hat Trick Paces Red Bulls' 5-2 Win

Thierry Henry scores his first MLS hat trick and assists on another goal as the Red Bulls crush the Impact.

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Philadelphia Union Vs. Vancouver Whitecaps, 2012 MLS: No Fireworks In 0-0 Tie

Sebastien Le Toux's much-anticipated return to PPL Park ended in a bit of a thud, as the Vancouver Whitecaps and Philadelphia Union settled for a 0-0 tie on Saturday. Le Toux had a golden opportunity to grab all three points for the Whitecaps, but after getting behind the defense his chip over Zac MacMath in the 83rd minute missed just high.

The chances for each team were not exactly plentiful. Although MacMath made some nice plays on punches, he was not really tested and did not make a save in earning his shutout of the season. Joe Cannon made just a pair of saves, but wasn't really tested much either.

The big plus for the Union is that this is their first point of the season. They had opened the season 0-3, and while this was their best defensive effort, it still left much to be desired on the offensive side of the ball.

The Whitecaps, meanwhile, remained undefeated and now sit at 2-0-2. Last year, it took them 13 matches to get to eight points. This was also their fourth road point, something it took them until July 20 to accomplish last year.


New York Red Bulls Vs. Montreal Impact, 2012 MLS: Final Score 5-2 Red Bulls At Henry Notches Hattrick

The New York Red Bulls suffered a bit of a scare in the early going against the Montreal Impact, but they calmed down and Thierry Henry ended up firing them to an emphatic 5-2 win. The match started in entertaining fashion, with Sanna Nyassi striking early for the visitors before Thierry Henry and Rafael Marquez combined to bring the Red Bulls level, the former swinging in a peach of a cross that allowed Henry to slip between a pair of Impact defenders to nod past Donovan Ricketts.

The Impact went back ahead ten minutes later - a poor long-range effort from Justin Mapp was inexplicably allowed to go in by Ryan Meara, but the Red Bulls managed to get to halftime level after Matteo Ferrari chopped down* Dax McCarty in the penalty area and Kenny Cooper was able to convert the spot kick.

*Yes, it was 100% a penalty.

The hosts stepped it up after the interval, and Henry put them ahead with a superb goal 56 minutes in. The former Arsenal man turned his defender brilliantly and laid in a precise effort into the botton corner to give the Red Bulls a 3-2 lead, and Henry helped make it four with a lovely flick to Mehdi Ballouchy 72 minutes in. From then on, the home side was in total control, and the Impact could do very little to get back into the match.

Henry got his hattrick as the clock ticked down, scooping a rebound over Rickets for his team's fifth, but by then the three points were a formality. A 5-2 win, even against an expansion side, is a pretty impressive result - the Red Bulls will be hoping that they have more halves like the second and fewer like the first, however.


DC United Vs. FC Dallas, 2012 MLS: Final Score, Black And Red Cruise To 4-1 Win

D.C. United and FC Dallas combined for 25 fouls between them, four yellow cards and a red card, and that was with the referee letting fouls go. Except for the fantastic finishes, the game resembled rugby much more than soccer, but the goals certainly redeemed the match. FC Dallas took the game into halftime tied at 1-1, but United played very well and finished their chances in the second half to grab a 4-1 win.

On all five goals, the defending was very poor, but there's no taking away from the finish on the opener. Maicon Santos scored the first goal of the match in the 28th minute, hitting a brilliant strike to the far post from 20 yards out. The FC Dallas inexplicably backed off him all the way and gave him way too much room to shoot.

DC looked like the better side for most of the first half and looked like they were going to coast into halftime with a lead, but they gifted a goal to Dallas. DC central defender Emiliano Dudar took a terrible touch in the 41st minute, essentially providing a through ball to Blas Perez, who finished to tie the match. Perez appeared to be offside when the ball was played in, but the referee judged that Dudar's attempt to play the ball nullified the offside.

That Dallas goal was made to look like a fluke as the second half wore on. The go-ahead goal and eventual winner was scored by rookie Nick DeLeon in the 60th minute, and it was a brilliant one. Maicon Santos played a cross into the back post from the right and DeLeon lost his man, let the ball bounce, then hit a fantastic volley into the roof of the net.

DeLeon would set up Danny Cruz for a close-range finish with a low cross in the 66th minute for the third goal and Dwayne De Rosario set up Maicon Santos for the fourth, scored in the 73rd minute with a header.

In the 77th minute, Daniel Hernandez made an ill-advised challenge on De Rosario from behind and was shown a second yellow card. De Rosario didn't react well to the challenge; he sprung up and started screaming profanities at Hernandez, inciting a bit of a scuffle. De Rosario was shown a yellow card for his part in the incident, while Hernandez exited the game. DC was unable to add to their lead, but Dallas will have to play next week without their suspended captain.

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