After ironman-like seasons during his first two MLS campaigns, defensive midfielder Perry Kitchen found the back of the net tonight in a performance that exhibited his augmented attacking prowess. In the 17th minute, with D.C. United down 2-0 to the Philadelphia Union, captain Dwayne De Rosario collected a through ball from Brandon McDonald and found Kitchen close to the penalty area. The Indiana native slotted it home for his second career MLS goal, the first coming during his rookie season on 5/29/11 against the Portland Timbers.
“First, I’m always gonna do what’s best for the team, so I think if as a defensive midfielder, if I can become a threat – you look at the best [defensive] mids in our League or even the world, guys like [Osvaldo] Alonso or Beckerman, they’re getting forward, getting shots off,” said Kitchen back in late March.
Kitchen has been a consistent force for the club ever since he was drafted 3rd overall in 2011. During his rookie season, the Akron University product became the only player in club history to lead the team in minutes played. And just last year, Kitchen came up one minute shy (2,804) of breaking United’s single-season minutes played record, set by Jeff Agoos in 1996. Having played all 90 minutes in all seven games of 2013, Kitchen shows no sign of slowing down and will play a key role in steering the Black-and-Red back on track.