D.C. United announced their preseason plans for the 2017 Major League Soccer season, and once again, the Black-and-Red will take two separate trips down south to Florida. Earlier, the Tampa Bay Rowdies announced the second edition of the Suncoast Invitational tournament, in which United and four other MLS teams will participate in. Friendlies for D.C. include games against the US under-17 national team, Jönköpings Södra IF of Sweden, the Montreal Impact, the Philadelphia Union, and a team still to be named.
Players will report to Washington, D.C. on January 23, before the team departs for Bradenton, Florida on January 26th. United will then face the US under-17 team on February 1, before the game on February 4 against a currently unknown team. The team then wraps up their Florida trip at the IMG Academy with a game against Jönköpings. This will be the third year in a row United faces J-Södra, with the previous two games ending in draws.
United then heads home, before returning to Florida on February 16 to participate in the Suncoast Invitational for the second time. Last year, United faced the hosts, the Tampa Bay Rowdies, just prior to the start of the tournament, marking the debut of Luciano Acosta after his arrival on loan from Boca Juniors.
This year, United will face the Impact on February 18, before wrapping up against the Union on February 25. Last year, they played those same two teams in this same tournament. Toronto FC and the Chicago Fire are the other two MLS teams in the Suncoast field this time around, along with NASL’s Rowdies.
The team then returns to the nation’s capital for the final week of training, before hosting Sporting Kansas City at RFK Stadium on March 4 to kick off the 2017 season.