In a Tuesday afternoon blog post on WashingtonPost.com, the Soccer Insider thinks that only 16,000 fans will pack RFK on Saturday night for D.C. United’s home opener. The Insider called a sell out “ambitious,” but I think fans of the Black-and-Red would beg to differ.
Following a run at the MLS Cup last year, D.C. United sold out two of its final three games and took back RFK, putting together an impressive 18 game unbeaten streak. In the Eastern Conference final, held at RFK on a blustery mid-November night, D.C. United had to open up additional seats for the Black-and-Red faithful to cheer on the team. 20,015 packed the house that night, well-surpassing the set capacity of 19,647.
Yesterday, at the club’s 11th annual United for D.C. Kickoff Luncheon, Head Coach Ben Olsen said that “one of the things I’m most proud of from last year is that we became relevant again in this city and we gave our fans and new fans belief that D.C. is ready to compete again for Championships.”
Despite a snowstorm bearing down on the Greater Washington Region, gametime weather for Saturday is expected to be 55 degrees and sunny – perfect conditions to make a trip to RFK with your family or friends. Click here to buy tickets and prove the Soccer Insider wrong.
A highlight from this past weekend's match at Houston was Bill Hamid. The young United keeper made a handful of spectacular saves, including one that he and defender Chris Korb doubled up for. The save earned Hamid a spot among the finalists for the MLS Save of the Week contest. Watch now and then vote for your Save of the Week!
RELATED: Spotlight on Bill Hamid
As in years past, this year, D.C. United Supporters Groups and fans are planning to take over Red Bull Arena. This year, the stakes are higher, the March 16 match will be broadcast live on NBC. All fans are invited, bring your friends and your family, you do not need to have a membership with any specific supporters groups. Full details about the trip below:
D.C. United vs Red Bull New York - Saturday, March 16 - 12:30pm
Screaming Eagles: Travel Information
RELATED: That's all you've got, NY?
At an MLS Jersey Week event last night, a New York Red Bulls fan let everyone know how he/she felt about the Black-and-Red. Weak.
Our supporters, on the other hand, are much more creative.
Oh yeah, remember when United supporters outnumbered New York fans at Red Bull Arena during playoffs last year? Awkward...
A past MLS MVP and former captain of his country’s national team, Carlos Ruiz became the first-ever Guatemalan player to sign with D.C. United on Feb. 20, 2012. Although perhaps not the first from their countries to wear the Black-and-Red, many other United players are also foreign-born.
United center back Dejan Jakovic was born in Croatia, moved to Canada, and now plays for the Canadian National Team. Lewis Neal was born and raised in Leicester, England. Neal played professionally in England until coming stateside to play with NASL side Orlando City S.C. Three Black-and-Red teammates hail from Brazil—Marcelo Saragosa from Campo Grande, Raphael Augusto from Rio de Janerio, and young Designated Player Raphael from Àuga Boa, Mias Gerais (a Brazilian State). Also from South America is United forward Lionard Pajoy, hailing from Norte de Santander, Colombia. D.C. defender Robbie Russell was born in Accra, Ghana and lived on four different continents (Africa, Asia, North America and Europe) before his family settled in Amherst, Massachusetts. Recently acquired John Thorrington was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, and then moved to Los Angeles, California before signing with England’s Manchester United. United’s newest Homegrown Player Michael Seaton, 16, hails from Spanish Town, Jamaica and represented his country in the CFU U-17 FIFA World Cup. Another new addition to the Black-and-Red, Syamsir Alam comes to D.C. from Jakarta Indonesia. In total, 11 United players come from other countries before arriving in the nation’s capital to put on the Black-and-Red.
Did you watch The Late Show with David Letterman last night? If so, you would have seen Imagine Dragons, an indie rock band out of Las Vegas Nevada. The band is on tour, promoting their debut album Night Visions. After an afternoon taping session in New York City, the group headed south to Silver Spring, Maryland for their show at The Fillmore. After the show, D.C. United was proud to present the band members each with an authentic D.C. United jersey, while we all watched the remainder of The Late Show backstage.
D.C. United would like to send a special thanks to the band, as well as Live Nation and The Fillmore for a great performance and for the support of the Black-and-Red.
WATCH: The Late Show with David Letterman - Full Episode: February 22, 2013 or Imagine Dragon's performance on The Late Show below:
For the first time ever, Major League Soccer games (eight of them, to be exact) will be broadcast on ESPN 3D, “the world’s first 24/7 all-sports 3D channel.” D.C. United’s April 21 match against regional rival Philadelphia Union at RFK Stadium will be broadcast live on ESPN 3D at 5 p.m. ET. Adrian Healey, Taylor Twellman and Alexi Lalas will commentate and provide studio analysis for the second meeting of the I-95 rivals.
The 18th MLS season includes a total of 20 broadcasted games on ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN Deportes and ESPN 3D.
FIFA today announced that Goal-Line Technology (GLT) will be used at both the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup and 2014 FIFA World Cup. A successful trial period at the FIFA Club World Cup and Frank Lampard’s uncounted goal in the 2010 FIFA World Cup were reportedly two big factors in the decision that came down.
"The aim is to use GLT in order to support the match officials and to install a system in all stadia, pending the successful installation, and pre-match referee tests," a FIFA statement communicated.
Last July, Major League Soccer (MLS) entertained the thought of using GLT by the 2013 season, but those tentative plans were scrapped. Back on July 5, 2012, Nelson Rodriguez, executive vice president of competition and game operations, said, “MLS is eager to begin the process toward implementing one of these advancements, but we first need to research the installation, testing, staffing and training required.”
Ian Harkes, one of D.C. United icon John Harkes’ kin and U-18 Academy standout for United, was profiled by the Fairfax County Times yesterday. Below is an excerpt with the Black-and-Red Academy mention:
Now Ian is gearing up for a final stint with the D.C. United Academy U18 team, which begins its season in March.
“It’s really nice to see him develop from a 13-year-old that wasn’t all that athletic all the way to being one of the top recruits in the country and certainly one of the top players in the MLS academy,” said Tom Torres, the D.C. United Academy’s U16 coach who coached Ian’s U14 Herndon Real Juniors team. “He’s got a lot of ability and a lot of intelligence. That’s one of the things that everybody always talks about is that he’s got an intelligent soccer brain. You couple that with his abilities and his tactical awareness, and it makes for a very fine soccer player.”
Next for the 2012 D.C. Gatorade Boys Soccer Player of the Year is Wake Forest University, where he will play collegiately for the Demon Deacons.
Recently, MLS partnered with an international soccer-art collective called the Futbol Artists Network (FAN), to create a series of club-inspired art as part of a project called #TrueColors. The project asked FAN artists to use the club’s colors, marks, and jersey as inspiration for their pieces.
As part of the #TrueColors project, we’re holding a one-of-a kind contest that gives you the opportunity to express yourself, and your passion for your club, through art.
WIN A JERSEY
There’s a sweet prize at the end for the winner, too. One person will be randomly selected to win the official 2013 jersey of his/her choice courtesy of MLSGear.com, and the winning tweet will be featured on MLSsoccer.com.
It’s simple to participate. Between Feb. 14-19, send a tweet that includes the following four elements:
- The link to an original photo of your artwork, available on public domain (ex: Instagram, Photobucket, Flickr, etc.)
- A brief description of how your artwork is connected to your favorite MLS Club
- The hashtags: #TrueColors and the @handle of your club
- Lastly, make sure your account is following @MLS
The winner will be notified on Twitter by direct message from @MLS on Feb. 22, and announced online thereafter.
Official contest rules: http://www.mlssoccer.com/fans/social-media-giveaway-rules