Wayne Rooney is absolutely lighting Major League Soccer up, and it might just put D.C. United into the playoffs.
The England legend scored twice to give D.C. a 2-1 victory over Chicago at home on Sunday, leaving them two points back of a playoff spot with two games in hand. Rooney’s brace gives him five goals in his last three games, helping D.C. to a six-match unbeaten streak.
With the game scoreless at the first half, Chicago opened the scoring in the 51st minute as Aleksandar Katai burst through the middle and fed Raheem Edwards to the left. The 23-year-old weaved his way into the box, dumping a pair of defenders on their tails before finishing to the left.
That would require the home side to come from behind, and that they would. Rooney pounced in the 62nd minute with a shot from Paul Arriola redirected by the Englishman, and while that was saved by Stefan Cleveland, it came right back to Rooney who wouldn’t miss with the follow-up.
The decisive moment would come in the final minutes, as Luciano Acosta was taken down in the box and Rooney stepped up to deliver the penalty. D.C. would grab all three points, leaving them with 41 on the season, two back of Montreal with two more games in hand on anyone above them. That means D.C. controls its own destiny in the playoff race, able to win out and clinch a spot. The goals not only give Rooney five in his last three games, but also leaves him with nine on the season in 15 matches, a considerable total given how gassed he looked towards the end of his Premier League career.