D.C. United fall 1-0 to Toronto FC in first preseason match of 2014

Paul Frederiksen-USA TODAY Sport

In a game that tells us precisely nothing about either team, we will take a different tack in our match review.

Here are the lessons we learned from D.C. United's preseason-opening 1-0 loss to Toronto FC on Wednesday night:

  • Fog can mess up a broadcast, dude.
  • Never trust an amateur-level venue - particularly one in Florida (or Boyds) - to stream professional matches. Unless you're some kind of masochist who loves buffering, in which case, you do you.

That's it. I'm not drawing any lessons from Bright Dike's late winner (partly because I didn't see it - thanks, IMG Academy Stadium wiring!). I'm not filing anything away about Nick DeLeon's apparent strong chemistry with Luis Silva or Perry Kitchen's successfully holding the ball under pressure from Michael Bradley or the number of crosses that went from the feet of D.C. players to precisely nobody.

This was the first preseason game. United's top goalkeeper and three most highly-rated scoring threats were out of uniform. Eleven guys started the first half for the Black-and-Red, and eleven different guys played the second, each against Toronto sides that resembled each other only by the jerseys they wore. I would have liked to see a D.C. goal, but I also would have liked to be drinking Pappy Van Winkle during the game instead of Old Overholt. I didn't get my wish, but I'll take what I got.

So instead of trying to break down what was always going to be a disjointed game tactically, we'll start something that I'm blatantly ripping off from Josie Becker of LAG Confidential, a preseason minutes tracker. For each preseason game, we'll update our little chart here with the number of appearances, starts and minutes each player gets. It won't be much use just yet, but by the end of the Carolina Challenge Cup, we should be able to look at it as roughly equivalent to Ben Olsen's depth chart heading into the season. Here's where it stands one game in:

App St Min
Andrew Dykstra 1 1 45
Joe Willis 1 45
App St Min
App St Min
App St Min
Sean Franklin 1 1 45 Bobby Boswell 1 1 45 Taylor Kemp 1 1 45
Jalen Robinson 1 45 Jeff Parke 1 1 45 Travis Golden* 1 45
Steve Birnbaum 1 45
Conor Shanosky 1 45
App St Min
App St Min
App St Min
Kyle Porter 1 1 45 Perry Kitchen 1 1 45 Nick DeLeon 1 1 45
Christiano Francois 1 45 Davy Arnaud 1 1 45 Victor Munoz* 1 45
Jared Jeffrey 1 45
Zach Barnes* 1 45
App St Min
App St Min
Luis Silva 1 1 45 Conor Doyle 1 1 45
Collin Martin 1 45 Michael Seaton 1 45
Not Appearing
Chris Pontius
Eddie Johnson
Fabian Espindola
Chris Korb
Nana Attakora
Bill Hamid
Lewis Neal
Casey Townsend * Not under contract

What did you think of the first preseason match of the year? Let us know in the comments.

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