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Kitchen: "Nobody's throwing in the towel"

Team banding together amidst winless streak

perry kitchen vs philadelphia union

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USA Today Sports Images

In the midst of a club-record 11-match winless streak, extended with Saturday’s 2-0 loss against Chicago, D.C. United have already lost as many games this season as they did in 2012.

That certainly doesn’t bode well for the club’s once-high postseason aspirations. Regardless, the players haven’t lost hope.

“We’re doing all the same things that we have been. Nobody’s throwing in the towel here,” said United midfielder Perry Kitchen. “We’ve lost all these games and it’s just the same simple mistakes. We’re just giving teams goals. We just have to stay focused. We’re staying positive, we’re staying in it and hopefully this thing will turn around.”

At 1-10-2 United will next take on a New England club Saturday (7:30 pm ET - Comcast SportsNet) that recently smoked L.A., 5-0, in an attempt to end their record slide. Last season, half of the 10 teams that made the playoffs in MLS had 10 or more losses, D.C. included, the most being Vancouver’s 13 losses.

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“It seems like every lapse in our concentration gets punished,” said midfielder John Thorrington, who returned from a knee injury against Chicago. “And that’s the run we’re in. We just need to help that concentration and in the final third, just get that cutting edge and get some more goals.”

Perhaps most frustrating for United and its players is that proven talent exists on the field. Especially against the Fire where Chris Pontius, Dwayne De Rosario and Nick DeLeon – who combined to score 26 goals last season – all were in the starting XI. This year, the club has scored six goals in 13 matches.

“It’s a different problem if we just weren’t good enough, but still the results are the same,” Thorrington said. “That is tough, but the hope we all hang onto is we know the guys that this team has, we know the guys have the ability and we also have faith in each other that it will come right.”

Added Kitchen: “It’s no secret that it’s been frustrating. One win. We have all the right tools, it’s just a matter of us performing, plain and simple. A little bit of luck here and there would be nice, but we’re staying focused and at this point, that’s all we can do.”

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