Around this time last year, we as D.C. United fans had already given up on the regular season and were starting to push all our eggs into the U.S. Open Cup basket. That was our only chance of having any reasonable amount of success in 2010, and a semi-final run that ended in large part due to a Pablo Hernandez red card was about all we could salvage of a season gone wrong.
The good news is that United has far greater hope in 2011. Despite a 4-0 loss to the New York Red Bulls on Thursday night, D.C. is in the muddled heap of mediocrity that rests below the top two spots in the Eastern Conference. But that doesn’t mean they’ll be taking tonight’s Open Cup play-in match against the New England Revolution any less seriously.
Game time: 7:30 PM
Location: Maryland SoccerPlex in Boyds, MD
Television: None, but you can listen to an audio feed at revolutionsoccer.net.
Projected starting lineup: Chest gave us a deep preview of the New England Revolution roster earlier today, but it’s always hard to project what lineups will be used in matches like this. If Ben Olsen follows the United tradition of recent years, we’ll probably see a majority of reserves, with some regular starters mixed in. Joseph Ngwenya and Blake Brettschneider seem to be the probable options up top. The midfield is sure to include Andy Najar and Santino Quaranta on the wings, with Kurt Morsink and Stephen King the most likely players for the middle. We know that Pat Onstad will start in goal, but outside of Daniel Woolard on the left, the rest of the defense is a bit of a question. Olsen could opt for a reserve-heavy lineup of Brandon Barklage , Ethan White , and Rodrigo Brasesco , or he could opt to throw Perry Kitchen into the mix to serve as the leader of the back-line.
Personally, I’ll be following along on Twitter to the best of my abilities while in class at the Reagan Building (skipped on Thursday for RBNY – Can’t do it two classes in a row), but we hope that you’ll use the comments here at your leisure.