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Fred? Ben. Ben? Fred.

I asked Ben Olsen today about Fred -- his initial opinion of the Brazilian, how he will fit in and whether Fred's inevitable move to the starting lineup will shift Olsen back into defensive midfield.

"At first look, he's a very good soccer player. He's a typical Brazilian -- very good on the ball, very composed and so far he seems to fit in very well with the team, both in personality and on the field clicking with the guys. It's still early and we're all interested to see how it works out when we spread out the field and play a big game -- and in Mexico that will give us a good chance to see how it goes."

"I'm not sure what the story is [with the position]. I'll leave that up to the coaching staff. I trust the coaching staff that they know what they are doing. They know whether we're going to be a better team with me out wide, with me in the middle or with me on the bench. That's something they have to decide and I will act accordingly. ... I had a lot of years out wide, I know the position, but I've had a couple years now in the middle and I feel pretty comfortable in both spots. They demand different things. The one thing is it's always tough to switch. Not necessarily in a game, but in general. You get in your rhythm, especially on the flank. It's nice to play your position consistently, but it really doesn't matter to me. I'll play anywhere they want me."

By Steve Goff  |  March 22, 2007; 6:33 PM ET
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Steven, When is the latest that Fred can get his international transfer and still compete in the CCC? Is there any indication that MV/A-League won't let him go in time to play in the CCC?

Posted by: Winoman | March 22, 2007 7:26 PM | Report abuse

Worst-case scenario: Fred has to wait until July 1 to play for DCU. That's not going to happen. DCU is confident it will get resolved very soon.

Posted by: Goff | March 22, 2007 7:38 PM | Report abuse

To answer Winoman's first question I believe it is 48 hours before the game when we have to provide our roster.

Posted by: JMR | March 22, 2007 10:30 PM | Report abuse

Ben's attitude is a thing of beauty, as Jimmy Conrad would say. What a team player we have....amazing. I remember reading the fan boards when he was playing in England, and the fans loved him there for the same reasons. Tireless, ego-less, age-less. Give out a new award, called the Ben Olsen Un-Sung Hero Award. Gomez may run the show, but Ben is the glue that holds it all together.

Posted by: grotus | March 23, 2007 8:12 AM | Report abuse

Olsen is great; it's a shame he's had so many injuries, otherwise he could've had a long stint on the national team. A wonderful player.

Posted by: CY | March 23, 2007 9:41 AM | Report abuse

That's why ben could be captain. He's always got a place here at United.

Posted by: DCAustinite | March 23, 2007 10:29 AM | Report abuse

Olsen's lessons for wing play (love GooTube):

Posted by: jj | March 23, 2007 12:57 PM | Report abuse

My guess is that you'll be lucky to have him. I watched him play on a number of occasions for Melbourne Victory - he was fast, fit, could carry the ball at pace, and passed accurately to the strikers.

As far as big game performances went, on any normal day he would have been MVP in the "Grand Final" (the Australian league has a playoff system a little like the NFL), except that the four goals he set up were all scored by the one guy, who put in a fifth for good measure...

The fans here in Melbourne were very, very sad to see him go. Sure, MLS is a substantial step up in class, but I'd be surprised if he isn't at least a very honest contributor and a great team guy.

Posted by: Robert Merkel | March 26, 2007 1:38 AM | Report abuse

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