For those unfamiliar with the tale of former D.C. United midfielder Perry Kitchen since he left the Black-and-Red, let’s bring you up to speed. The now 25 year old defensive midfielder left the team after the 2015 season, after reportedly rejected a multiyear contract offer that would have paid more than $400,000 in guaranteed salary. A free agent at that point, Kitchen signed with Heart of Midlothian F.C. in the Scotland Premier League on a two and a half year deal in March 2016.
Kitchen played well and before the 2016-17 campaign, was named team captain by manager Robbie Neilson in September. However, Neilson left in December to join English side MK Dons, and former Newcastle United assistant coach Ian Cathro took his place. In between his own form and Cathro’s changes, Kitchen’s playing time took a notable dip, seeing him play in the fewest games (29) of his career to date. On Thursday, the club captaincy was given to Christophe Berra, a former Hearts player who just returned to the club from Ipswich Town. Now, a report says Kitchen wants to leave the SPL side.
It’s no secret that D.C. United is in need of a player of higher quality at the defensive midfield position. Marcelo Sarvas was acquired from the Colorado Rapids to cover for Kitchen’s initial departure, and while Jared Jeffrey is a useful player, his ceiling in the position appears to be below what United needs.
Then you have Chris Durkin. The presumed #6 of the future was signed to a homegrown deal last year and looks to be a big part of the team’s plans in the years to come. The funny thing about the future, though, is that nobody knows when a given player will go from potential starter to actual starter. At this point, a bridge in that position seems necessary.
So that brings us to the question we're asking you. Obviously, D.C. needs a newer, better engine in their midfield, and it might be a little while before Durkin is ready to take the reins. With that in mind, and remembering that Kitchen turned down more than $400,000 a year previously (an offer that means United has retained his MLS rights should he return to the league), it does make one wonder about a potential return to the District for PK23. There are similarities to a situation D.C. found themselves in in 2014 when Charlie Davies wanted to return. That was settled when the Black-and-Red acquired a pick from the New England Revolution, with Davies joining the Revs.
So, using Kitchen’s prior reported terms as a benchmark, let’s ask two questions:
Do you want Perry Kitchen back at a $400,000 (or more) contract?
This poll is closed
And if you’ve answered yes,
Do you want to make Perry Kitchen a Designated Player with a multiyear contract?
This poll is closed
And of course, feel free to chime in to the comments below for anything which made have fallen through the cracks above.