POLL: How Should D.C. United Deal With The Injuries To Dwayne De Rosario And Nick DeLeon?

Marcos Sanchez is almost certain to start in Kansas City, but where? - Al Messerschmidt

D.C. United has been hit by a slew of injuries right before one of the toughest games of the season. We're asking B&RU readers to pick the best solution to a difficult problem. "Voodoo" is probably not an option.

Early yesterday, the news came through: Dwayne De Rosario was a new addition to D.C. United's injury report. The club captain was on the report as questionable with an adductor strain.

Possibly helpful, possibly pedantic side note: The only abductor muscles in the body are related to the fingers and toes, whereas adductor can refer to several muscles in the inner thigh, so in soccer it's almost always going to be an adductor strain rather than an abductor strain.

Later in the day, the news got worse: De Ro did not even travel with United to Kansas City, depriving the club of our star offensive player. De Ro's form this season has been a source of disappointment for United fans, but I think it's safe to say we would all still want him starting this game, on the road against one of MLS's toughest defenses.

This is just the latest injury to hit United. Lewis Neal has been battling a tricky injury (it's been listed as an abdominal strain, an adductor strain, and is now noted as a "pubic stress reaction," which sounds funny but probably sucks; those with long memories might recall Santino Quaranta dealing with a similar problem for months) since the preseason. John Thorrington, minutes after creating our first goal of the season, sprained his MCL while blocking a shot. Nick DeLeon suffered a rather severe hamstring strain in the first half against Columbus.

It's worth noting that all of those players are players we rely on for offense to some degree. This has left United so short of options that Syamsir Alam could possibly make the gameday squad as our only wide/attacking midfield option.

Predicting what Olsen will do can be tricky, and the versatility of the remaining players makes it even harder. Marcos Sanchez was a strong choice to replace DeLeon at right midfield, but with De Ro out he could easily play a central attacking role. If Olsen wants to play two forwards, he could be choosing between the ineffective Lionard Pajoy or shifting Chris Pontius up underneath Rafael Gladiador. Such a shift will have adherents, but it will also require starting Kyle Porter, leaving us with either Alam or Taylor Kemp on the bench as our only alternative on the wing if someone gets tired or hurt. There are also fitness questions surrounding Raphael Augusto (who is probably OK to start, but hasn't done so yet) and Carlos Ruiz (who probably doesn't have 60 minutes in his legs yet).

The possibilities are not endless, but this post could become a book if we went into each one. Instead, we're asking you, faithful reader, to vote on what you'd like to see. Did you feel the 4132 used against Columbus failed because of execution rather than it being a poor fit? Do you want to see United return to the double-pivot 442 and simply replace the injured players with our best back-up options? Do you prefer a 4231 to match KC's numbers in central midfield? Or, do you want to pick Other because you want to get crazy like El Chelis?

Make your choice and let us know about your reasons why in the comments.

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