Throwback Thursday: DC United

Aug 12, 2018; Washington, DC, USA; D.C. United forward Wayne Rooney (9) crosses the ball as Orlando
Aug 12, 2018; Washington, DC, USA; D.C. United forward Wayne Rooney (9) crosses the ball as Orlando / Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Few people in Major League Soccer history have singularly tormented a club like Wayne Rooney has tormented Orlando City.

The English legend came to DC United as a player in 2018 and went a perfect 3-0 against the Lions as an MLS player. Rooney returned to the nation's capital last season and his first victory as DC's manager was against, you guessed it, Orlando City.

Rooney's complete dominance of Orlando is one of weirdest little subplots in the league. Frankly, DC United as a club seem to have the Lions' number more often than not despite being one of the worst teams in MLS for most of the last 15 years.

Unlike my prior Throwback Thursday columns, I'm not going to rehash one specific game or moment, but instead just look at Rooney's bizarre domination over Orlando from up above.

All three of Wayne Rooney's best moments as a DC United player came against Orlando City. The former Manchester United center piece scored a direct free-kick from an impossible angle after drawing a suspect red card against Orlando striker Dom Dwyer.

It feels impossible that this isn't Rooney's best highlight against Orlando, but alas it's only number three.

The former Everton boy wonder also scored a goal from his own half after Orlando goalkeeper Brian Rowe was caught way off his line.

Still, though, a near olimpico and 70-yard chip aren't impressive enough to top the "Wayne Rooney embarrases Orlando City" highlight reel. You already know what number one is.

Orlando fans hate this play, and they hate seeing this play. It's hard not to hate seeing something like that happen to your favorite sports team. But personal grievances aside, it's hard not to accept that as one of the most impressive plays in league history and certainly one of the most iconic.

Rooney added to his infinity gauntlet of Orlando emabrassment by beating the Lions 2-1 with a pair of stoppage time goals last season --- his first win as DC United's manager. That DC team went on to comfortably win the Wooden Spoon, yet won both of its games against Orlando City.

I don't know what type of magic spell Rooney and DC have put on Orlando, but this is uncanny stuff. With the Lions set to rotate the lineup amidst a Champions League bout with Tigres, it's safe to expect even more shenanigans at Audi Field Saturday.