Former D.C. United stars Eddie Pope and Earnie Stewart named to U.S. Soccer Hall of Fame

Washington, D.C. (March 29, 2011) - Former D.C. United stars Eddie Pope and Earnie Stewart were elected to the 2011 National Soccer Hall of Fame. Announced earlier today by U.S. Soccer, Pope earned a spot on 74 percent of the ballots and Stewart on 71 percent of the ballots.

In response to Pope’s announcement, D.C. United President and CEO Kevin Payne commented: “It is altogether appropriate that Eddie Pope has been elected to the U.S. Soccer Hall of Fame. Eddie is arguably the greatest defender this country has ever produced. His achievements with D.C. United and his other MLS clubs, as well as the National Team, speak for themselves.”

Following Stewart’s election, Payne said: “Earnie Stewart had a great career with the U.S. National Team, and, of course, in Holland, as well. While he only played two seasons for D.C. United, he made an indelible mark while wearing our uniform. Earnie’s passion, his professionalism and his fierce competitiveness were keys to our 2004 MLS Cup Championship team.”

Payne continued: “I'm disappointed that, once again, Marco Etcheverry was not elected to the Hall of Fame. Marco was the driving force behind D.C. United during the most dominant era any professional team in our country has enjoyed and he set a standard for his position, which remains unmatched in MLS history. I call on the voters, in future, to broaden their perspective and acknowledge the great contributions key foreign-born players have made to MLS and the game in America, and vote them into the Hall of Fame.”

The Class of 2011 induction ceremony will likely be scheduled for this summer. Details are still being finalized and will be announced at a later date.