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Early Monday Kickaround

*MLS is hoping to finalize contracts this week for the All-Star Game opponent in Salt Lake City in late July and the MLS Cup venue in November.

The league has talked to Inter Milan about facing the MLS select squad (let's face it, it's the all-star game but not really an all-star team) and has also had discussions with at least two other European clubs and two Mexican teams.

As the Insider has been reporting since mid-January, Seattle is the leading candidate to host the championship game. The issue has been whether the match could be moved from an early-afternoon kickoff on the East Coast to late in the day. Such an arrangement would change TV coverage from ABC to ESPN because of programming conflicts. The league has also considered a Saturday date, but Sunday seems more likely. Toronto and New England are the other candidates.

*As D.C. United pushes for a stadium in Prince George's County, the club has begun steering business to the suburban jurisdiction. United will hold its annual kickoff luncheon at the National Harbor complex and has selected the upscale Gaylord National Resort on that site as the visiting team's hotel this season. However, discouraged by the distance to RFK Stadium (10.1 miles) and room rates, at least four teams are considering finding their own accommodations. League guidelines allow teams to opt out of two of the 14 contracted hotels per year. Last year, a Marriott property on the west side of the city was the official visitors' hotel.

*The MLS roster compliance deadline is today. Teams must be under the salary cap and have no more than 20 senior players and four developmental players under contract. Some teams will not have to make any moves. Trials and signings will continue throughout preseason and roster changes are allowed until late in the season.

Keep reading for important Insider information.....

*As you may have read here Saturday, the Insider is in the process of fully implementing a Twitter forum to provide loyalists with news and information in an instant. Fear not: Almost everything that I post on the Twitter contraption (140-word maximum) will appear in expanded, detailed form on the Insider.

Think of it as an early-alert system. The Insider already gives readers the fastest and most accurate information in the American soccer community, and with Twitter capability, we'll get it to you in rapid, short bites. Ben Olsen scores from 35 yards at practice? You'll hear about it right away. A signing or trade goes down? Twitter allows for immediate notification. I will also be able to link to Insider threads and general stories. (As a very special bonus -- from me to you -- you'll also receive occasional college basketball updates when I am on location for The Post at the small-conference and NCAA tournaments. Woohoo.)

Join our growing community by clicking here and be sure to follow my Post colleagues' work at this location.

By Steve Goff  |  March 2, 2009; 12:01 AM ET
Categories:  D.C. United , MLS  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Americans Abroad
Next: Video: La Liga

Comments

Do you plan to tweet in-game highlights? Frankly, I hope not.

I often Tivo games. I don't need another news source to remember to ignore so that I can avoid spoilers

Posted by: bergamot | March 2, 2009 12:22 AM | Report abuse

Steve as long as you aren't tweeting and driving I wouldn't complain. Just make sure you HTFU and drive when you hit the road. Cyclists, peds, and their children thank you in advance.
Anyone else remember a time when all this talking/text/tweeting would have had your dad calling you a sissy boy and smacking you up side the head?

Posted by: DadRyan | March 2, 2009 12:41 AM | Report abuse

Olsen did WHAT at practice?? Oh, right...

Posted by: Juan-John | March 2, 2009 12:54 AM | Report abuse

How long did you have to wait to make sure this was posted at 12:01? I've been following your twitter for a couple of days and that wasn't mentioned.

Posted by: sitruc | March 2, 2009 2:14 AM | Report abuse

RE: visiting team hotel

It may be 10 miles to RFK, but it's a straight shot on 295, so not sure what the problem is there. Room rates are a legitimate concern though, and I wonder why they did not choose a more affordable hotel property at National Harbor. The Gaylord seemed to be the most upscale option available when I went by there a few weeks ago. Here's a link to all the options: http://www.nationalharbor.com/consumer/hotels.htm

By the way, my favorite all-time Insider reader comment was the one who proposed the image of Becks by the pool at the HoJo in Cheverly...

Posted by: Pedalada | March 2, 2009 3:23 AM | Report abuse

dadryan:

i went to a burgerking yesterday. as i was about to order there was a sign labeled, "playroom". this playroom consisted of 4 computers, only. no balls, no obstacle course and slides to be found.

i turned to my friend and asked him what was going on. we couldn't make sense of it.

btw-my shift key is spotty =\

Posted by: redskinsux | March 2, 2009 3:28 AM | Report abuse

Having stayed at the hotel that was designated for visiting teams last year, I applaud DCU for making a change. I'll certainly not stay there again. As to the Gaylord place, I don't know it but I don't see how 10 miles can be that big of a problem.

And as long as SG brought up computer stuff, I can't figure out how to post from a blackberry like I used to be able to do. I can sign in to WashPost, I can read SI, but when I try to comment it says I need to sign in again but there isn't any link to do so like there is on the regular internet site. Can anyone help out this flailing luddite?

Posted by: troy6 | March 2, 2009 3:53 AM | Report abuse

I've had mixed success using WinMo phones and logging in. It depends on which browser I decide to use or have available since I have some apps installed to a microSD.

Posted by: sitruc | March 2, 2009 5:28 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Goff,

Re: "let's face it, it's the all-star game but not really an all-star team"

What did you mean by this?

Are you saying that the MLS sides selected the last few years have not been league stars? Or are you saying that the opponents do not have any stars?

Also, I have to ask the question again --

Why do home teams select the hotel for visiting teams? That makes no sense. Visiting teams have access to travel web sites. They can make their own accommodations and apparently in light of the undesirability of the National Harbor hotel site, are doing just that. What is in it for the home teams to get visiting team hotels?

Posted by: Ron16 | March 2, 2009 6:57 AM | Report abuse

Goff, I hate to bring up Beckham but its been bugging me no end that there is no end to the negotiations. When is the last possible day a deal could get done? March 9th? Its starting to look more and more like MLS has already made up its mind and is pulling him back in to the US which is fine by me. The only thing I would hate to see is the embarrassment that will follow in every other city he will play in. It will be great for publicity but completely distracting from the game.

Posted by: elfelixg | March 2, 2009 7:09 AM | Report abuse

Rom: home teams select hotels for financial reasons and to ensure availability. yes, it's an old tradition that predates the intertubes, but it still works. This way all visiting clubs have the same experience, and the same costs (which are probably lower if you book 20 rooms for 20 days over a year in advance)

Posted by: joshuaostevens | March 2, 2009 8:05 AM | Report abuse

I live near the National Harbor and drive by RFK at least once a week. It literally takes 15 minutes for me to get to RFK and I'm further from 295 then these visiting teams staying at the Gaylord will be. It can't be the distance it's gotta be the price. What hotels are close to RFK anyway?

Posted by: Solnoir | March 2, 2009 8:11 AM | Report abuse

I can tell you that the All Star match will not be played on Sunday, maybe if it were held anywhere else in the league but in Salt Lake City it simply will not happen.

It is on the current schedule for Wednesday but I would be happy to see it moved to Saturday afternoon if it means better ratings.

Do you think that Don's trip to Spain last week could have included talks with Barca about the All Star match? Given the new relationship between the league and still highly likely FC Miami franchise, it seems like it would be a natural to have FCB come to the states this summer for the All Star Match and to make the 2011 franchise announcements (I expect one to be announced as part of the first match in Seattle) but the second could wait until a few more month pass to see how the global economy is doing.

Any thoughts?

Posted by: f4denz | March 2, 2009 8:34 AM | Report abuse

eww no mexican teams please! That will be a boring match!

Posted by: TheWashDipsSince88 | March 2, 2009 8:52 AM | Report abuse

@f4denz,

He was referring to the MLS CUP being on a Sunday or Saturday.

All-Star game will still be a mid-week affair. The league cannot afford to cough up a weekend for a showcase.

And Barca's relationship with MLS is going to hinge a whole lot on stadium issues along with a tanking Florida economy.

Posted by: VirginiaBlueBlood | March 2, 2009 8:55 AM | Report abuse

Maybe the problem with Gaylord isn't distance from the stadium but distance from the city, entertainment, restaurants, etc. The teams travel together in a bus, right? So you probably want a place where the players can get out of the hotel and enjoy the city on their own or in small groups.

Posted by: fedssocr | March 2, 2009 9:00 AM | Report abuse

Huh? I never said the all-star game was on the weekend. MLS Cup is on the weekend.

The All-Star Game is Wed., July 29.

Posted by: Steve Goff | March 2, 2009 9:07 AM | Report abuse

I thought the DCU visitor hotel was in Crystal City -- wasn't it, for Becks?

Posted by: Reignking | March 2, 2009 9:07 AM | Report abuse

Visiting hotel was at 22nd and M last year

Posted by: Steve Goff | March 2, 2009 9:08 AM | Report abuse

haha

River Plate is in some trouble -- 5-1 loss this weekend. Gallardo came in at 55.

Posted by: Reignking | March 2, 2009 9:10 AM | Report abuse

From there to here
From here to there
Funny things are everywhere.
--Theodore Seuss Geisel

Happy Birthday.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | March 2, 2009 9:11 AM | Report abuse

Rumor is that Anthony Peters will sign a senior contract - does that mean that Domenic Mediate is a goner?

Posted by: PhillyMLS | March 2, 2009 9:12 AM | Report abuse

And of course, that Becks game was 2 seasons ago -- I just remember people trying to find out where they were staying.

Posted by: Reignking | March 2, 2009 9:12 AM | Report abuse

Why do home teams select the hotel for visiting teams?
======================

If it's anything like youth soccer, it's an opportunity for the host team to make more money.

Posted by: OWNTF | March 2, 2009 9:35 AM | Report abuse

Steve,

Any clarifying word on expansion. There have been a flurry of stories that seem to eliminate all the candidates from Barca pulling out from Miami, to St Louis not having the owners, Ottawa losing the Stadium battle to the CFL, Portland losing Civic Support and Vancouver's lack of a place to play.

If the League is to be believed the deadline is fast approaching and still no inkling?

Posted by: dcufan531 | March 2, 2009 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Oh and one I don't believe on expansion, that Montreal is back in the race.....

Thanks, Nick

Posted by: dcufan531 | March 2, 2009 10:01 AM | Report abuse

I REALLY hope this Twitter phase goes away.

Posted by: ATPDC | March 2, 2009 11:15 AM | Report abuse

What hotels are close to RFK anyway?

Posted by: Solnoir | March 2, 2009 8:11 AM

**************

There's a great hostel on the hill maybe 10, 12 blocks away. Couple bed and breakfasts too. Easy walking distance to Barracks Row. Finn MacCools!

Posted by: benonthehill | March 2, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Wait. Someone just told me FM is closed! Tragic.

Posted by: benonthehill | March 2, 2009 11:38 AM | Report abuse

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lJgAhlagHfg

The third goal from the Catania/Palermo derby could be a candidate for goal of the year...

Posted by: targetmedia | March 2, 2009 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Luckiest goal of the year maybe...

Can't wait to see what DadRyan has to say about the Catania jerseys...

Posted by: edgeonyou | March 2, 2009 12:13 PM | Report abuse

That's Palermo rockin' the pink unis...

Posted by: Pedalada | March 2, 2009 1:47 PM | Report abuse

I agree with previous comments re: hotel distance. National Harbor may be farther away as the crow flies, but there's an expressway that runs directly from National Harbor to RFK; meanwhile, a Foggy Bottom hotel means driving across the city, through lights and traffic etc. OTOH, the Foggy Bottom hotel is obviously better if the plan is to go partying that night after the match . . .

Posted by: christopher_a_metzler | March 2, 2009 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Full props to DC United for taking their business elsewhere. Hopefully the Nats keep doing it to the D*strict as well. Serves them right for forcing the team out of the city.

Hopefully they don't pass the representation bill for the D*strict. You want your vote to count? Move.

Thx,

Jay!

Posted by: jayrockers | March 2, 2009 3:27 PM | Report abuse

Hopefully they don't pass the representation bill for the D*strict. You want your vote to count? Move.

Posted by: jayrockers | March 2, 2009 3:27 PM
============

A myopic view of democracy and a petty attitude towards the District's residents. Too bad you can't separate your anger over Poplar Point from important issues.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | March 2, 2009 3:48 PM | Report abuse

The Gaylord is one of the nicest hotels in the whole country. Maybe by spoiling your opponents it "softens" them up for the games!

Posted by: alan19 | March 2, 2009 4:45 PM | Report abuse

A myopic view of democracy and a petty attitude towards the District's residents. Too bad you can't separate your anger over Poplar Point from important issues.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | March 2, 2009 3:48 PM

Oh, and the Constitution saying that representation comes from the STATES is petty? Giving one city the same representation as entire states is a big issue. Kind of like Gun Control and Freedom of the Press.

Thx,

Jay!

Posted by: jayrockers | March 2, 2009 6:26 PM | Report abuse

The Constitution is a beautiful, but imperfect document. It is not canon. As originally ratified, it prevents African-Americans from owning their bodies and women from voting.

As far as a city having the same representation as states, consider this:

District of Columbia: population 591,833
State of Wyoming: population 532,668

12: Congressional districts in New York CITY
39: STATES with fewer than 12 CDs
7: STATES with one CD

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | March 2, 2009 6:55 PM | Report abuse

What would I say about Palermo's jersey anyway? Just cuz I think that dudes text messaging their boy's all day long is hella girly, doesn't mean I don't think grown men can't handle their business in Pink...
Shoot I'd buy a pink DCU jersey if they sold one...

Posted by: DadRyan | March 2, 2009 8:57 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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