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D.C. United's travel adventure

D.C. United adjusted as best it could during the first wintry week of training camp in Washington. The coaches and staff shoveled the artificial turf grounds outside RFK Stadium for half-field workouts and the players utilized an indoor fitness center. They just needed to bear with it until Wednesday when they could escape the cold and fly to Florida for the second stage of camp, a 2 1/2-week stay in Bradenton (temperature: 59 degrees).

But when the second big storm approached this week, the club scrambled to get out of town. AirTran honored United's request to depart a day early, but because of limited availability, the players, coaches and support crew were booked onto three separate flights. Most were on the first departure Tuesday, which ended up being delayed at Reagan National Airport, forcing them to miss a connection in Atlanta. That group was then divided into three parties for separate flights to Sarasota, Fla. All arrived in nearby Bradenton late Tuesday night.

As for the other two flights out of Washington, they were cancelled. So a group of at least a dozen piled into a van before the brunt of the storm struck and drove 650 miles to Atlanta, arriving around midnight to await a flight this morning. They rejoined the first group in Bradenton around noon.

Meantime, United goalkeeper Troy Perkins and forward Chris Pontius were unable to fly on their scheduled flight to Los Angeles for the start of U.S. national team camp at Home Depot Center.

For more details and player updates.....

Despite winter threats, United almost always opens training camp in Washington, spending a week primarily on fitness and conditioning, before heading to a warmer climate for intensive workouts and exhibition matches. Snow and cold had never caused as many problems as this year.

"If they hadn't gotten out yesterday, they probably would have had to wait until Saturday," said General Manager Dave Kasper, who isn't scheduled to join the team until next week. Besides the weather issues, the Presidents Day holiday weekend left few seats available late this week.

Meantime, defender Bryan Namoff (head/neck/concussion) did not accompany the team to Florida and is not likely to join the group there. Goalkeeper Josh Wicks continues to rehab his shoulder in California, midfielder Danny Szetela is recovering from knee surgery in New Jersey and midfielder Santino Quaranta (foot) is planning to travel south this weekend.

One foreign trialist is expected to arrive in Bradenton on Wednesday, another this weekend a perhaps a third soon. Kasper declined to identify them. The Insider reported this week that Honduran defender Quiarol Arzu and Jamaican defender Jermaine Taylor were tentatively scheduled to begin workouts with United. Goalkeeper Andrew Quinn, a trialist from Notre Dame, was part of the group that drove to Atlanta.

By Steve Goff  |  February 10, 2010; 2:00 PM ET
Categories:  D.C. United  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Wednesday kickaround
Next: Americans abroad, Wednesday edition


Please don't say Ben Olsen drove the van.

Posted by: DCB23 | February 10, 2010 2:12 PM | Report abuse

Planes, Trains, and Automobiles. DCU 2010!

Posted by: jake77 | February 10, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Is it true Andrew Quinn has a photographic memory?

Posted by: Rand-al-Thor | February 10, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Come all without, come all within
You'll not see nothing like the mighty Quinn

Posted by: OWNTF | February 10, 2010 2:44 PM | Report abuse

big thanks to whatever entity managed to have this snow day coincide with midweek EPL action. come on you Villains!

Posted by: dimesmakedollars | February 10, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

on another note, Namoff's continued absence gets more and more worrisome. does he have a history of concussions? i certainly don't want him to come back and risk making it worse, but this is going on 6 months now. in a game where head contact is inevitable, it doesn't bode well that his recovery has been so slow and incomplete.

Posted by: dimesmakedollars | February 10, 2010 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Donovan with another assist from a corner to Saha. Everton 1-1 Chelsea

Posted by: spikeman | February 10, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Can listen to Donovan and Everton vs the scum here...

Posted by: Kev29 | February 10, 2010 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Donovan wins penalty!

Saha steps up... SAVED. Still 1-1

Posted by: Kev29 | February 10, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Donovan drew a penalty,but Saha was saved by cech

Posted by: spikeman | February 10, 2010 3:49 PM | Report abuse


Do you happen to be KevO from GrandOldTeam?

Posted by: spikeman | February 10, 2010 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Donovan clips some heels and gets a yellow...looked pretty accidental. He's looked pretty good today.

Posted by: davemcl | February 10, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

I saw one of the United team vans departing National yesterday while dropping my dad off. See, just like the team, he was moving his flight up to Tuesday to beat the storm...

...and he was headed to Atlanta...

Is my dad on DC United? How did I miss this?!

Posted by: Chest_Rockwell | February 10, 2010 4:30 PM | Report abuse

So, Dononvan's transfer fee has gone up, eh?

Everton better make an offer soon or they'll be sorry.

Posted by: delantero | February 10, 2010 4:39 PM | Report abuse

More USA! USA! USA! chants at Goodison Park :-)

Posted by: Kev29 | February 10, 2010 4:56 PM | Report abuse

More USA! USA! USA! chants at Goodison Park :-)

Posted by: Kev29 | February 10, 2010 4:56 PM

They're just mocking us because of the blizzard.

Posted by: Joel_M_Lane | February 10, 2010 4:58 PM | Report abuse

Everton better make an offer soon or they'll be sorry.

Posted by: delantero | February 10, 2010 4:39 PM

Can they even make an offer? Transfer window is closed.

I'm sure they'd like to try an extend the loan - but is that something that LA would consider? Does the league want to lose it's second biggest star in a crucial marketing period before the World Cup?

Posted by: Kev29 | February 10, 2010 5:01 PM | Report abuse

More importantly, does Bianca like Liverpool (the city, not the FC)?

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | February 10, 2010 5:07 PM | Report abuse

More importantly, does Bianca like Liverpool (the city, not the FC)?

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | February 10, 2010 5:07 PM | Report abuse

If your talking about Donovan, he says he feels at home and the fans make him feel that way.

Posted by: spikeman | February 10, 2010 5:10 PM | Report abuse

A few months ago, I read that Donovan had split from his long-time gal pal, which led me to expect a move abroad for him.Does anyone else remember seeing that news, and does anyone know if they're together or apart currently? Normally, not something I'd care about, but it does seem to influence Donovan's movements.

Posted by: fischy | February 10, 2010 5:24 PM | Report abuse

Donovan and his old lady split in the summer.,,20292059,00.html
Why do you think it's Dempsey's wife in SI anyway?

Posted by: DadRyan | February 10, 2010 5:38 PM | Report abuse

I have free snow available. Take as much as you want, you haul it!

Posted by: 9Nine9 | February 10, 2010 5:59 PM | Report abuse

So Donovan and Kajlich split up about the time that Chelsea was on its US tour. Hmmm.....

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | February 10, 2010 6:57 PM | Report abuse

Funny you mention that 270, isn't there a picture floating around out there of Terry mandhandling a cold fish at a market up in Seattle? Or am I getting mixed up with some random RSL player?

Posted by: DadRyan | February 10, 2010 7:28 PM | Report abuse

DCU flies AirTran? Now that's Major League Soccer!

Posted by: diego_r | February 10, 2010 7:46 PM | Report abuse

MLS is so mickey mouse, could you imagine the Skins/Nats/Wiz/Caps traveling like this. very sad and pathetic.

Posted by: cr10 | February 10, 2010 8:51 PM | Report abuse

In former years, DCU would take a direct non-stop to Tampa and then bus the one hour to Bradenton. Connecting flights are very risky at this time of year even if the weather is normal. Taking a connecting flight demonstrates poor judgement on the part of the team staff.

Posted by: lgm6986 | February 10, 2010 9:31 PM | Report abuse

Donavan's ability to raise his game up another level coincided directly with dumping that life sucking winch. Golden Boot of MLS, outstanding in Confed. Cup, LA to the MLS Cup, and now lighting it up at Everton. She has always held him back. Best thing he has ever done for his career.

Posted by: RetiredShark | February 10, 2010 9:45 PM | Report abuse

9Nine9 - Well put.

Posted by: Chewie- | February 10, 2010 9:59 PM | Report abuse

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