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United Season Preview

The Post's season preview for D.C. United will be in Sunday's paper, but you can read Goff's story here. He's en route to Los Angeles for tomorrow's opener, so as usual, make sure to check the Soccer Insider for pre-game and post-game news.

By Greg Manifold  |  March 21, 2009; 4:57 PM ET
Categories:  D.C. United  
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Next: Matchday #1: United at Galaxy


This sums it up very nicely here:

Posted by: Poopy_McPoop | March 21, 2009 5:15 PM | Report abuse

Interesting to see Soehn use the adjective "fantastic". He's never exactly been loose with strong words in either direction. It might be the most bullish statement he's ever made about the team.

Posted by: Chest_Rockwell | March 21, 2009 5:49 PM | Report abuse

Boredom-caused predictions for tonight's games:

Houston 1
Columbus 2

Dallas 0
Chicago 2

Kansas City 2
Toronto 1

Chivas 1
Colorado 2

San Jose 2
New England 0

Posted by: Chest_Rockwell | March 21, 2009 6:53 PM | Report abuse

This article sums it up remarkably well. I mean the one that Goff wrote. I see our team as kind of a soup. We don't have a setup because nothing has solidified. The quality of this soup is the real question. Well, we'll find out.

Posted by: UnitedDemon | March 21, 2009 7:26 PM | Report abuse

Houston and Columbus are underway, playing in what appears to be a local dog park

Posted by: Kev29 | March 21, 2009 8:17 PM | Report abuse

Can we play a couple games and get a feel for the team before we say we'll be struggling for a playoff spot? The sky can't fall before the first match.

Maybe the young bloods, the return of Gomito and a renewed Olsen will force us in a new direction.

I for one, am eager to see how Doe/Khumalo/Janicki develop .. . and if Burch can step up from a sophomore slump.

Posted by: delantero | March 21, 2009 8:42 PM | Report abuse

Watching Houston vs. Columbis. THe condition of the field is awful. Opening day and Houston can't get the field in good shape? Its hard to expect the rest of the world to take MLS seriously when one of the premiere teams can't provide better conditions. Its embarrassing! Grrrrr

Posted by: nyjer1 | March 21, 2009 8:44 PM | Report abuse

I'm with you delantero. Goff did point out how productive Luci was when Gomez was in the fold. I'm excited for the fact that we do seem to have some more depth this season, lot's of young dudes who will surely be more motivated than the old fart squad we were rolling last year. Less fixture congestion, and honestly a fair amount of moves around the league that doesn't leaves a lot more question marks than sure things.
Excited that the season is starting. Bummed I don't have FSC or yet, but all I really want to see is DC United tomorrow afternoon.
Let's Go!

Posted by: DadRyan | March 21, 2009 8:52 PM | Report abuse

Its hard to expect the rest of the world to take MLS seriously when one of the premiere teams can't provide better conditions. Its embarrassing! Grrrrr
Maybe everyone should install field turf and that'll never happen;-)

Posted by: DadRyan | March 21, 2009 8:53 PM | Report abuse

Did I miss something? Has Dave Johnson always worked for FSC?
Found a live feed and was surprised to see him...

Posted by: DadRyan | March 21, 2009 9:01 PM | Report abuse

Wow, what a field tonight. Looks like Houston and Columbus are playing at Hallowing Point Park.

Posted by: Poopy_McPoop | March 21, 2009 9:19 PM | Report abuse

DadRyan, he's been on there from time to time. FSC has a double header, and the usual tandem is in LA tonight.

Posted by: notafembot | March 21, 2009 9:20 PM | Report abuse

Nice, both Man U (0-2 Fulham--Dempsey gives 82 minutes) and Chelsea lose (0-1 T-ham)!

Posted by: delantero | March 21, 2009 9:30 PM | Report abuse

Brian Dunset is one of those again non stop talking like teaching how to play soccer rather than commentating....

Posted by: DCUnitedFootball | March 21, 2009 9:34 PM | Report abuse

1 day until United's first match!

Posted by: Curious99 | March 21, 2009 10:37 PM | Report abuse

Is Dave Johnson doing the game for CSN tomorrow?

Posted by: sitruc | March 21, 2009 11:04 PM | Report abuse

Davey Johnson was so annoying. The play by play could not announce exciting action on the field because Johnson was too busy explaining the value and danger of holding a high defensive line. Johnson did not have enough sense to stop talking in order to allow the play by play to focus on what was happening at that moment. FSC can't find better announcing teams for MLS games?

Posted by: nyjer1 | March 22, 2009 8:13 AM | Report abuse

nyjer1: Your annoyance is misdirected...Dave Johnson is the play-by-play guy. Brian Dunseth was doing color commentary, and yes, he was talking over the action.

For my money DJ is one of the best available and BD is one of many examples of the worst.

Posted by: buck-bass-goal | March 22, 2009 9:08 AM | Report abuse

"Playing at a local dog park." Priceless and spot on.

TV commentary for MLS games: Dreadful and unchanged (Harkes is good - most of the rest are borderline or border crossing awful). In need or something more than a stimulus. Someone take away all of their bonuses -- NOW!

I am curious. What will curios99's countdown be after today?

Posted by: postgolb | March 22, 2009 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Chest, never go to Vegas . . . >>>>>>>

Boredom-caused predictions for tonight's games:

Houston 1 Columbus 2
Dallas 0 Chicago 2
Kansas City 2 Toronto 1
Chivas 1 Colorado 2
San Jose 2 New England 0

Posted by: Chest_Rockwell

Posted by: delantero | March 22, 2009 9:45 AM | Report abuse

16,000 at Robertson for the home opener.
Thank goodness for Seattle.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | March 22, 2009 9:46 AM | Report abuse

Attendance seems to be down . . usually the season openers are high, no one cracked 17 k this year.

Posted by: delantero | March 22, 2009 9:46 AM | Report abuse

Whoa, parallel thoughts here 270 . . . were you also thinking of bacon? MMMMMM, bacon . .

Posted by: delantero | March 22, 2009 9:48 AM | Report abuse

Hey Goff, good news: great article; bad news: left me wanting more. Looking at the roster I count 10 totally new guys. Any chance of some sort of brief rundown on each of them, what it was that the team saw in them that resulted in keeping them over the others who competed for the positions?

Posted by: regularfan | March 22, 2009 9:48 AM | Report abuse

MLS is doomed! Doomed, I say...

Posted by: fischy | March 22, 2009 10:13 AM | Report abuse

Let's Go Party Boy, Let's GO!

Posted by: DadRyan | March 22, 2009 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Hey, Steve, here's one to check out with the team's FO.

According to someone who was at the Barra Brava pre-season party last night, Fred Matthes, DC United Director of Ticket Ops and Customer Service, announced via public address system that if United is not able to close the stadium deal in Prince George's county that the team is definitely moving to a city that is open to building a stadium.

That ought to help ticket sales, don't you think?

The Front Office may want to clarify this one...quickly.

Posted by: seahawkdad | March 22, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Anyway to know how many tickets were sold for United's opening game and how many season ticket holders?

Posted by: DCUnitedFootball | March 22, 2009 11:20 AM | Report abuse

I respectfully disagree that Harks is good either. No JP, rob stone oh no no. Evan max bratos sp become stranger last night.

Posted by: DCUnitedFootball | March 22, 2009 11:24 AM | Report abuse

Is there a way to find out the rough annual revenue that the city makes off of United games in a season? They're getting tax money, but also a cut of concessions and parking, right?

Just curious with all the talk in the Post about the DC budget deficit and cutbacks. How much money are they losing if/when United goes to PG?

Three rookies starting in that TFC v. KC game, I wonder how many tonight.

Posted by: eadc | March 22, 2009 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Eadc: I believe the current arrangement is the the club pays $1.5 million in rent in exchange for all revenues, plus taxes on tickets, beer, salaries and the like. So not that much in the grand scheme of a multibillion dollar budget.

Posted by: joshuaostevens | March 22, 2009 11:59 AM | Report abuse


Yeah, that didn't go well. I will say that the teams I predicted wins for all outplayed their opponents (save KC). There was some rough luck out there last night for the teams that had the better of play.


On Houston-Columbus:

Pretty scrappy game (MLSnet described it as a "thriller"; this is an outright lie). Both teams have their legs under them in terms of energy and defending as a unit, but the central midfields both struggled with their touch. For Houston, this forced the play wide even more than usual, and with Davis subdued, they didn't create much. Columbus, meanwhile, didn't find Schelotto as much as they needed to.

1-1 seems fair enough, though I can see Columbus feeling a touch more frustrated. Once they get some offensive cohesion down and sharpen their passing and touches, they'll be a contender again. Houston, to me, looks like a team that needed to make another move in the offseason. They'll be good, but I think they'll be grinding out some ugly results to get there.


Colorado virtually ran Chivas off the field in the first half. Marsch and Nagamura didn't offer much of anything, and Mastroeni (through sheer force of will) controlled central midfield by himself. Chivas also got away with several bookable tackles on Clark (not to mention Kljestan's attempt to break Kimura's leg just before halftime). This is typical of Chivas under Preki, if last season's Fair Play standings indicate anything.

In the 2nd half, Mastroeni continued his tour de force, but Marsch and Nagamura were completely changed and with Ballouchy as always a non-factor, Chivas had a platform to get back into the game. It still took a goal out of the blue (that Pickens should have saved), but Nagamura's first brought Chivas to life. The 2nd was purely a bad clearance from Kimura, but Chivas was pressing and sometimes you get handed gifts.

Casey and Mastroeni looked really good for the Rapids. Their weak spots are lack of any presence at attacking midfield and their occasionally mistake-prone defenders (excepting Gibbs, it's all of them). Chivas didn't particularly impress me, though with Galindo able to play they're a different proposition.

Posted by: Chest_Rockwell | March 22, 2009 11:59 AM | Report abuse

Kimura = team of the weak

Enjoyable game -- lots of back and forth. My only complaint is that Conor Casey isn't the only shaved head on Colorado, so I had trouble figuring out where he was. Colorado was a few better touches away from really doing well. Let's see if they gel going forward.

Pickens looks like he has cement feet.

Why did Stephan Frei start??

Oh, and Saturday game are great.

Posted by: Reignking | March 22, 2009 12:05 PM | Report abuse

United's site mentions several radio outlets, of which I believe 1050 AM is the only one of the Anglophone persuasion. Does anyone know the URL for the corresponding online stream of Limarzi and Co.? This was a source of constant confusion last year, as Bonneville kept moving it from one place to another. I'd even be willing to listen to the game on a Los Angeles station, if it comes to that.

Posted by: universityandpark | March 22, 2009 12:07 PM | Report abuse

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