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D.C. United Vs. Portland Timbers, 2011 MLS: Crazy Draw Eliminates D.C., Puts Portland On Ropes

DC United needed three points on Wednesday night to stay alive in the race for the MLS Playoffs, but they didn't get it. It wasn't for lack of trying though. After falling behind by a goal, the hosts got an equalizer from Dwayne De Rosario. That set up a crazy final 15 minutes in which DC had their chances and the Portland Timbers had theirs in some of the most exciting end-to-end action you will ever see. In the end, the match finished as a 1-1 draw, eliminating D.C. from playoff contention and also striking a blow to Portland's playoff chances.

After going offside five times in the opening minutes, Kenny Cooper finally broke through with a goal in the 24th minute. He was able to get in between two DC defenders and then snap home a header of a deflected cross to put Portland on top. The rest of the first half was all Timbers as DC looked completely disinterested and it didn't get much better in the second half until De Rosario took over.

In the 73rd minute, De Rosario gathered the ball on the left and completely turned his defender around before ripping a rocket of a shot up and into the upper corner to equalize with a great goal. The match was level and it was about to get crazy.

With De Rosario pulling the strings, DC suddenly looked dangerous. He put a shot in the back of the goal, but it was ruled offside. He twice fed teammates for what should have been easy finishes, but they missed. Meanwhile, on the other end the Timbers were busy rattling the cross bar and in between it all the ball was bouncing around in front of goal on both ends. It was crazy, but it didn't result in a goal.

DC still has one match to play, but they're done. Portland is not, but they may be by their final match on Saturday. If the Red Bulls win or draw on Thursday night then the Timbers are eliminated, but a loss by the Red Bulls and the Timbers are a win on Saturday away from making it to the playoffs as an expansion team.