preview: D.C. United vs Toronto FC

Preview: D.C. United vs. Toronto FC

D.C. United hosts Eastern Conference foe Toronto FC tonight at 7:00 p.m. ET (Comcast SportsNet). With a record of 1-7-5, Toronto FC is only one spot ahead of the Black-and-Red, currently sitting in 9th place in the conference.

Since Toronto FC joined MLS in 2007, the two sides have faced each other 15 times, accumulating a record of 10-3-2 in United’s favor. The Black-and-Red has scored 32 goals against Toronto FC, while only allowing 18. At RFK, DCU has a 4-1-2 record against TFC, tallying 22 times.

Toronto FC hasn’t played since June 1, when the Canadian side tied the Philadelphia Union 1-1. The Toronto FC goal came from Jonathon Osorio, the squad’s second-leading scorer (3). With Five goals, Welshman Robert Earnshaw leads his team. But the goals seem for to be for naught, as TFC has given up 9 of its 19 goals against between the 76th and 90th minute.  

“They’re a gutsy team and they just haven’t seemed to put those last couple of minutes together to be in the hunt,” said D.C. United Head Coach Ben Olsen. “We’re in for a tough match.”

D.C. United, however, had a great showing on Wednesday in the Fourth Round of U.S. Open Cup. DCU beat the Philadelphia Union 3-1 courtesy of a Dwayne De Rosario hat trick.

“I think we’ve all seen [De Rosario] when he’s in a good rhythm and on fire,” said Olsen. “He played with a chip on his shoulder and a little bit of fire about him.”

WATCH: Spotlight: Dwayne De Rosario

In regular season play, though, United is currently 1-10-3, most recently tying the New England Revolution on the road (0-0). With equal possession and an equal amount of shots, DCU held off the recently hot New England attack with key defensive plays and big saves from goalkeeper Bill Hamid.

WATCH: Spotlight: Bill Hamid

With injuries sidelining starters Chris Pontius, Ethan White and James Riley, and causing Kyle Porter to be listed as questionable, Head Coach Ben Olsen finds the positives of the situation.

“The positive thing is the guys that we’ve asked to step up and have had to fill in roles have done a pretty good job of it,” said Olsen.

Ahead of tomorrow’s match, Olsen is optimistic about the outcome and confident in United’s chances.

“The reality is we can skip a team for the first time in a while,” said Olsen. “We can not be in last place after this game. So, that’s a real focus for us. We want to start moving up in the table as I’m sure [Toronto] do. So, it’s a great challenge for us.”

Click here to buy tickets to tomorrow’s match against Toronto FC.