Over the last ten games, Branko Boskovic, a playmaking central midfielder has cracked the starting XI, been a substitute, and sat on the bench for the full 90. Early last week, his frustration boiled over after a training session as he spoke to media about his playing time and role within the club.
Despite his frustration, Boskovic has carried on as usual, doing what needs to be done, day in and day out. His form over the last three games has helped lead the Black-and-Red to three consecutive wins and a jump from sixth place in the Eastern Conference to a tie for third place with the New York Red Bulls.
Through some turmoil, heightened by media attention on his role, Boskovic’s teammates have stood by his side. Chris Korb, United’s left back, who has also seen stints of playing time throughout the season, said “Branko is a great pro like everyone says, and everyone loves him.”
Boskovic’s assist on September 15 against the New England Revolution tied the game up at a crucial time and set the stage for the game-winner from midfielder Lewis Neal. The drama continued on Sunday evening as he was subbed on in the 56th minute for striker Maicon Santos. Just eight minutes later, Boskovic made a streaking run through the Chivas USA box and finished a Pajoy cross with a diving header to give D.C. United the game-winner.
Following the game on Sunday, Ben Olsen praised Boskovic’s commitment. “He’s committed, even though I’m sure he disagrees with me at times, he’s committed to the guys out there and he’s committed to this organization and he always has been,” said Olsen after the match. “So, I’m happy he was the hero today.”
Boskovic also expressed some excitement and emotion following the win at his locker inside of RFK Stadium. “It’s a good feeling. Especially when you win 1-0. I think we deserve these three points, it’s very important for us and this goal was because we worked hard and it was good quality by the group,” said the midfielder.
Boskovic’s unique abilities will assuredly have an impact as D.C. United continues its playoff push through the final four games of the season. The Black-and-Red is next in action on Saturday away from home against the Portland Timbers (10:30pm ET, Comcast SportsNet).