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Ben Olsen, Josh Gros and Philadelphia

D.C. United assistant coach Ben Olsen grew up in Middletown, Pa., just down the Susquehanna from the state capital, Harrisburg, and 90 miles west of Philadelphia. With United set to face the expansion Union on Saturday in the first meeting of what should become a spirited MLS rivalry, I asked Olsen if he considered himself a Philadelphia guy.

"It's too far away for a country boy like myself," he said. "I am a Middletown guy. I grew up in a much tougher area than Philadelphia in Pennsylvania. Three Mile Island, the nuclear power plant is nearby. My hometown was very similar to 'The Simpsons' and Springfield. A lot of those same characters. I was Bart."

So who would play Josh Gros, Olsen's former teammate who is from Mechanicsburg, another town outside Harrisburg, and is now the Union's team coordinator?

Ned Flanders

Image via Wikipedia

"Josh Gros was Ned Flanders."

Media room hilarity ensues.

On a more serious note, Olsen added: "There are some mixed emotions going up there. Obviously we need to get a win, but on a bigger scale, I am very happy they have a team."

Olsen's sister and brother live in Philadelphia and he grew up playing for FC Delco, an elite club program based in the metropolitan area.

"I spent a lot of my childhood playing with and against teams from that area. So I understand the Philly soccer culture and I am very happy they are now going to have an organization that is going to be part of a great [Interstate] 95 rivalry. New York, Philly, D.C. and throw New England in there, I think it's going to be great. I love playing people right down the road. It always adds a little different energy."

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By Steve Goff  |  April 8, 2010; 1:44 PM ET
Categories:  D.C. United , MLS  | Tags: Ben Olsen, DC United, Ned Flanders  
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Next: Emilio eager to return to MLS, play for Philly


But what about Luci?!?

Posted by: CYork1 | April 8, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Ned: Oh, there's no explaining God's will, Roddie. That's like explaining how an airplane flies.

Posted by: Poopy_McPoop | April 8, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Convey would be Milhouse. Albright, Disco Stu.

Posted by: beergorila | April 8, 2010 2:14 PM | Report abuse

And Thomas Rongen would be Principal Skinner b/c they both suck!

Posted by: no_recess | April 8, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

The real question is, who would be Hans Moleman?

Posted by: Poopy_McPoop | April 8, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Onalfo = Lisa
Soehn = Maggie
Chang = Principal Skinner
Fenty = Mayor

Posted by: troy6 | April 8, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Quimby, I meant to type...

Posted by: troy6 | April 8, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Albright, Disco Stu.

Posted by: beergorila


Posted by: VTUnited | April 8, 2010 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Ray Hudson = Willie

Posted by: Reignking | April 8, 2010 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Onalfo = Lisa
Posted by: troy6

so then Etcheverry = Bleeding Gums Murphy?

Posted by: CDRHoek | April 8, 2010 5:26 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: Rand-al-Thor | April 8, 2010 5:49 PM | Report abuse

Soccer Insider = Otto

Posted by: karengoff | April 8, 2010 6:32 PM | Report abuse

Or Moe the bartender

Posted by: karengoff | April 8, 2010 6:33 PM | Report abuse

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