The first five games of D.C. United's 2012 schedule were tough. Four out of five against Western Conference teams projected to make the playoffs, and one against the defending Eastern Conference champions. Finishing that portion of the schedule with only two losses is admirable for a team with so many new faces.
The softer part of the schedule starts today. It starts with the New England Revolution.
The Revs would resent being called soft, and perhaps that's not exactly what I'm trying to say. But achieving three points for United is far more tenable this game than in previous games. And that should be the goal for today.
Game time: 4:00 PM
Television: Comcast SportsNet Plus. On Comcast XFinity in Maryland, I've got it on HD on channel 856. If you've got a different cable provider, please list the channel number in the comments to help out our other readers.
Projected starting lineup: With the unfortunate hamstring strain suffered by Emiliano Dudar in practice this week, Dejan Jakovic and Brandon McDonald will resume their partnership in central defense, with Robbie Russell on the right and Daniel Woolard on the left. Since Bill Hamid is still listed as probable and not 100%, I think we're likely to see Joe Willis in goal for one more week. Andy Najar will probably return to the starting lineup on the right side of midfield, with Nick DeLeon on the left and Perry Kitchen and Dwayne De Rosario in the middle. Hamdi Salihi and Maicon Santos will remain up top.
Prediction: Yesterday I called 2-0 in favor of United, with Salihi scoring his first MLS goal. But with Dudar out and Benny Feilhaber in for the Revolution, I'm going to revise that prediction to 2-2. Four points from this week's action against the Revolution and Montreal Impact is a must, meaning that a draw is the absolute minimum for today. I think that's what we'll get.
What are you drinking: To be determined at this hour since I'm pre-writing this GameThread in the morning, I'll let you know in the comments prior to game time.
This is your place for pre-game, in-game, and post-game discussion.