DC United is 0-5 and its time for a change.
Changing the players isn't entirely realistic until the transfer window opens in July. Changing the head coach seems inevitable, though probably still a couple months away from happening. Changing the general manager is something that should be seriously considered for the first time this offseason.
But those are more long term changes. And none of those changes are going to happen right away. We need to make a change right away that will lead to something other than yet another goddamn 0-2 home loss.
Curt Onalfo has tinkered with United's starting lineup a couple times already this season. We've changed formations, and some players have changed positions. But there are still some things that haven't changed.
There are five players who have started every match for DC United so far this season. And we're 0-5. Maybe that's where the changes need to start.
Those five players are Troy Perkins, Carey Talley, Rodney Wallace, Kurt Morsink, and Santino Quaranta.
Pretty interesting collection of names there. Two players were cut by their former teams in the offseason. Two players have played for the US National Team within the last year.
Soccer Insider hinted yesterday that Perkins and Quaranta both might find themselves out of the starting lineup against the Wizards tonight. Goff is rarely (if ever) wrong about these things. And these two players being relegated to the bench for a game or two is something that I advocated in my analysis of each of them after the loss to the Red Bulls.
I don't want to give the other three a pass either though. Talley might be the lone veteran American back on this team, but he hasn't been without fault on our many goals conceded. And while some might argue that Morsink has been our most consistent player so far, is it really a good accomplishment to be consistently mediocre? There's a reason these two were each available to be claimed off waivers this offseason. And I'm not sure that either would be a regular starter with any other team in the league.
Rodney Wallace has shown potential at times, but has not been exactly what we've hoped for since joining the backline this season. Wallace at left back with Dejan Jakovic, Marc Burch, and Bryan Namoff next to him doesn't sound so bad. But we've had so far hasn't been working. A move to a more familiar position might be just what he needs.
Kevin Payne's comments yesterday made it clear that DC United will be adjusting their tactics this week. They'll be expected to play a more physical style and focus on keeping their opponents off the scoreboard. They will be seeking goals via their grit and hard work, rather than sexy soccer. With that in mind, here is the starting lineup I'd like to see tonight:
Risky, yes. Drastic, yes. But this lineup places an emphasis on hard work off the ball. Kansas City will find it hard to operate with Wallace and Simms partnered together in central midfield. And Adam Cristman has the physical strength and aggression necessary to punish his former team up top.
Benching four of your regular starters all for the same game isn't very conventional. But I think it's what this team needs right now. Feel free to try to talk me off the ledge in the comments.