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Cruz returns to practice

04 June 4:17 pm

Cruz returns to practice

By Sebastian Salazar

United's injury list dwindles as players take advantage of rest

A few notes from around RFK ahead of Tuesday's fourth-round Open Cup match against the Philadelphia Union:

Tuesday’s contest will be D.C. United’s first this year at the Maryland Soccerplex.  The suburban facility seats 3,200 fans but fits closer to 5,000 at full capacity.  Though playing away from home usually ruffles some coaching feathers, Ben Olsen seemed pleased to be heading north.

A few notes from around RFK ahead of Tuesday's fourth-round Open Cup match against the Philadelphia Union:

Tuesday’s contest will be D.C. United’s first this year at theMaryland Soccerplex.  The suburbanfacility seats 3,200 fans but fits closer to 5,000 at full capacity.  Though playing away from home usuallyruffles some coaching feathers, Ben Olsen seemed pleased to be heading north.

“Germantown is always a really nice field,” United’s coachsaid on Monday morning.  “I thinkit is a unique atmosphere for the fans, it’s a little bit more up close andpersonal.”

While United’s players were focused on Philadelphia comeMonday, most had been intently focused on the U.S. – Canada match Sunday nightas teammate Dwayne De Rosario captained Les Rouges in the scoreless draw.  Perry Kitchen has grown close to DeRothis season, but admitted some mixed emotions as he watched the border clash.

“It’s a weird situation,” Kitchen said.  “Of course you wish him the best.”

But?

“Being an American I’m always pulling for my country,” headded with a smile.

United’s injury list continues to dwindle as thoserecovering from ailments heal.  In a very positive sign, midfielder Danny Cruz practiced Monday after straining hishamstring in a 3-1 victory over Toronto on May 19.  Chris Pontius practiced fully but when asked if Tuesday’s matchwould be too soon for a return, the midfielder/forward responded in theaffirmative.