Welcome back, Districtistas - it's been a while. But MLS' World Cup break is over (even if the World Cup itself isn't), and D.C. United takes the field tonight against the visiting Seattle Sounders. It's first place in the East against first place in the West, and while both teams will be missing some key pieces, it should still be a good throwdown on the banks of the Anacostia.
Kickoff Time: 7pm EDT
Venue: RFK Stadium in the District of Columbia
TV/Streaming: If you can't make it out to East Capitol Street on what is shaping up to be one of the nicest June evenings imaginable, you can watch Dave Johnson and Santino Quaranta with the call on Comcast SportsNet. If you find yourself in the diaspora, MLS Live is your ticket.
Projected DC XI: United will be missing two big parts of what have made them run in 2014, as both Fabian Espindola and Davy Arnaud will miss the game due to suspension. Jeff Parke also appears very likely to miss tonight's game as he recovers from injury. I expect mostly like-for-like replacements at all three spots as Ben Olsen runs out his usual 4-4-2: Bill Hamid; Sean Franklin, Bobby Boswell, Steve Birnbaum, Cristian Fernandez; Nick DeLeon, Perry Kitchen, Lewis Neal, Chris Rolfe; Eddie Johnson, Luis Silva.
Prediction: The Black-and-Red haven't lost at home since their opener against Columbus, and I don't think they'll start now. Especially not against a Sounders side missing DeAndre Yedlin and Clint Dempsey to the national team and Obafemi Martins to suspension. Silva's hat trick against Montreal will have his confidence up, and Neal's intelligence will help make up for the loss of Arnaud. Espindola has been involved in 15 of our 22 goals this year (more than any player in MLS), but I say United make up for it as Eddie Johnson and Nick DeLeon each score their second respective goals of the year. 2-1 good guys.
What Are You Drinking?: Today is screaming out for the Tradition, and that's what I'll be having.
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