Team

04 December 12:20 pm

Day 2 in Jakarta has been anything but uneventful. After having our first night’s rest in a bed in three days, we woke up to a mid morning breakfast in the hotel. Shortly thereafter, we headed to the hotel pool for a regen session.

Regen session
This session consisted of everything you’d expect it to, from stretching to water jogging, but it ended with a little fun and games. The group was split into two teams for a relay race. There was some impressive, and equally unimpressive, swimming on display. Many were capable of sporting a relatively decent free stroke, while some brought more entertainment than ability to the swimming pool. We witnessed everything from sharp diagonal turns, to uncoordinated arm splashing, to pure abandonment of swimming and just running on the bottom of the pool. There are swimmers, and then there are not. D.C. United has both.

Practice session
After lunch we left for training at a local turf field. Many abandoned their cleats for running shoes and practice began. About 15 minutes into the session the floodgates opened. It rained like I’ve never seen before. I’m not talking about some Maryland/DC/Virginia rain, this was Indonesian rain. This rain is a whole different breed than anything we’ve ever seen. It was thick, fast, heavy, and unwavering. For 10 minutes we endured the onslaught before Ben finally called it a day and we started setting up for our coaching clinic. But wait, if it’s raining so hard, how can we have this coaching clinic? Great question.

The flood
So, we’re setting up cones and goals for the clinic looking around and everyone’s eyes are asking the same thing, is this for real? And yes, it is. We are having this clinic because the kids waiting under the covered patio are looking out like nothing is happening out of the ordinary. Apparently, this is a daily occurrence during the wet season in Indonesia. Apparently, every day, the force of God is unleashed through rain upon the people of Indonesia. And no way is that going to stop them from playing some soccer. They ran around like it was 70 and sunny while we all looked around for Noah’s Ark.

In the end the clinic went well, and it concluded with some pictures and autographs.

The Embassy
Our day ended at the United States embassy. Ambassador Blake and his family welcomed us in where we were greeted with handshakes and introductions. We quickly made our way to the buffet and ate some of the best food we’ve had thus far on the trip. After talking with some of the numerous guests we took pictures with owners Erick Thohir and Will Chang with the US Open cup trophy (still unsure if this was the real trophy or an imposter). ** Editors Note: I am pretty sure the Open Cup trophy is NOT in Indonesia** As the night drew on, the previous days of travel began hitting everyone once again. Eyes were beginning to glaze, and it was clear we had to head back to the hotel before someone took refuge on the couch.

3 Things I’ve learned thus far in Jakarta:

  • For any trip expected to be around a 30 minute drive, plan a minimum 5 hour cushion
  • Driving is not for the weak of heart, there are no lanes, no rules, no courtesies…Survival of the fittest
  • Goat crossings are to be expected

Here are some photos from Day 2:

03 December 11:35 am

Holy long travel day.

After leaving RFK Stadium at 5:30 p.m. Sunday night, we finally made it to our hotel in Jakarta, Indonesia at 4:30 p.m. TUESDAY evening, but not before a 12-hour flight to Abu Dhabi, a seven hour layover where Michael Seaton reassured the fact that he is still a teenager, showers in an Abu Dhabi airport lounge that brought life back to those I thought we lost, that eight hour flight to Indonesia where you ran out of the good movies to watch, so you settled for Monsters University (don’t knock it until you try it) and that lovely rush hour drive in Jakarta. All-in-all, we are still in one piece and happy to finally be here.

You learn a lot about a team when you spend every second together on a trip like this. So far, I have learned that Joe Willis is tall, and you should try to avoid sitting next to him on any flights over five hours. I know, most people already had that figured out, but I also realized what kind of guys we have on this team— ones with great character.

It was pretty obvious when we initiated the “I-haven’t-seen-you-in-a-few-weeks” hugs and handshakes in the locker room before we left, but it really hit when we arrived at our hotel and everyone had an equipment bag on their shoulder, a smile for the camera and a gracious thank you for owners Will Chang and Erick Thoir as they were there to meet us off the bus. And yes, I even got a few of them to talk to media after a day like that. It must be the holiday season!

No day is riddled with down time in this trip, but tomorrow may take the cake for a non-travel day. We start with breakfast and a pool session (not to shabby on the eyes), which is then followed up by a press conference with several members of D.C. United and the Indonesian media, a coaching clinic in Jakarta, a trip to the U.S. Embassy for several players to work with youth from the area and it finishes with dinner with the U.S. Ambassador. Not bad for day one. Actually, that’s not bad for any day.

We will make sure to keep you updated, but now it’s time for us to catch up on some much needed sleep as we prepare to go to bed at 10 p.m. Tuesday night, a.k.a. Tuesday morning for all you back in the states. 

03 December 9:25 am

Now that Taylor Kemp has taken us all the way to Jakarta, let's check in with the rest of team. While you were sleeping and/or waking up this morning, they arrived in Indonesia. 

Make sure you follow all the guys on both Twitter and Instagram to stay up-to-date on all the excitement in Indonesia!

02 December 11:29 am

As the team heads to Indonesia to kickoff the offseason tour in Southeast Asia, defender Taylor Kemp is keeping us all up-to-date via Twitter using #dcu2indo. Hopefully he keeps this up, because all of us here in the U.S. are enjoying the play-by-play.

28 November 12:21 pm

This Thanksgiving, we are most thankful for the fans who continue to stick by us through the good and the bad. Through 18 seasons, 13 trophies, winning records and losing records, the Black-and-Red faithful are our rock. #ThanksToSoccer, we have the best fans in MLS!

Tell us how soccer has made a positive impact in your life by Tweeting with #ThanksToSoccer, or using the comments section below.

27 November 2:02 pm

Everything happens faster online, including your holiday shopping! This year, don't let Black Friday lines get you down, the D.C. United Team Store has you covered with epic deals on Cyber Monday on December 2, 2013. Please note that the Team Store at RFK will not be open on Friday, November 29. Follow on Twitter.

Happy Thanksgiving to the entire D.C. United family!

22 November 10:47 am

D.C. United Homegrown goalkeeper Bill Hamid is training with West Brom through next week, returning in time to join his teammates in Indonesia. The talented, young goalkeeper was recently with the U.S. Men's National Team in Scotland and Austria for two friendly matches. Though Hamid did not feature, he always finds training at the national team level invaluable and a great chance to grow. Continuing his trianing with an Enlgish Premier League club, Hamid is focused on developing as an elite 'keeper.

Today, Hamid tweeted while in the West Midlands, showing he was enjoying his time there.

 

21 November 4:27 pm

On November 21, 1999, D.C. United added its third MLS Cup to the trophy case. For the second time in league history, the Black-and-Red faced the LA Galaxy at Foxboro Stadium for the premier title. United ultimately defeated the Galaxy 2-0 with a goal a piece for Ben Olsen and Jaime Moreno.

Were you at MLS Cup 1999? If so, tell us about your experience in the comments section below!

DCU Starting XI. From top left: Marco Etcheverry, Eddie Pope, Carlos Llamosa, Jeff Agoos, Carey Talley, Tom Presthus, Jaime Moreno, Roy Lassiter, John Maessner, Richie Williams, Ben Olsen

Man of the Match Ben Olsen celebrates after scoring in the 45 minute

Team President Kevin Payne, League Commissioner Don Garber and D.C. United hoist the Alan I. Rothenberg Trophy

And then there were three.

19 November 1:59 pm

150 years ago today, President Abraham Lincoln delivered one of the most famous speeches in American history. The Gettysburg Address was a dedication at the Soldiers' National Cemetery in Gettysburg, PA, delivered just four and a half months after the Union Army defeated the Confederate Army in the Battle of Gettysburg.

In remembrance of this important day in US history, and the values that Americans hold so dear, Bill Hamid and the U.S. Men's National Team recited the speech today.

15 November 1:38 pm

This afternoon (3:00 p.m. ET, ESPN2) The US Men's National Team faces off against Scotland in an international friendly. One face on the USMNT squad stands out for DCU fans, as Homegrown keeper Bill Hamid was recently called into National Team camp and will be joining his countrymen in Glasgow.