Catching up before United catches a flight

Pontius out, Kemp in

Chris Pontius - 2013

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USA Today Sports Images

Taking caution with Chris

D.C. United will be heading to Columbus with out 2012 Best XI midfielder Chris Pontius. The Black-and-Red midfielder strained his groin at training yesterday and is expected to be out for a couple of weeks—the exact timetable is yet to be determined. 

WATCH: D.C. United vs Columbus Crew at one of the Official Viewing Parties at 7:30 p.m. this Saturday

With Pontius – a key component of the United attack— out of the lineup, Head Coach Ben Olsen focuses on the positives, noting that with others previously sidelined with injuries, United players have stepped up and delivered.

“It becomes an opportunity for another guy to step in and show us that he is a guy we can rely on,” said Olsen. “We’ve had guys like [Kyle] Porter, [Raphael] Augusto and [Marcos] Sánchez get real minutes. And when we do get healthy, hopefully we’ll have more options and more competition, which I think we’re lacking right now.

Traveling Taylor

Taylor Kemp has been added to the travel roster for tomorrow’s match against the Crew. The University of Maryland product has been on loan with the Richmond Kickers but will now suit up for his first Major League Soccer career match.  The rookie impressed this preseason as an outside midfielder, scoring two goals in a 4-2 win over the NASL Tampa Bay Rowdies.

“We’re pretty thin in the midfield if you take Chris out,” said Olsen. “I’ve played [Kemp]there before. I think he is capable of filling in that spot if we need him.”

What a Stylish Team

Not only was United midfielder Nick DeLeon awarded the second best hairstyle in MLS, but center back Brandon McDonald has switched up his do as well. Wondering what the charismatic defender has done with his look? Tune in to Saturday’s match to find out.