The newest member of the Black-and-Red made his D.C. United debut on Sunday night. Marquinhos Pedroso, who joined D.C. United on a trade with FC Dallas, started in his first match for the Black-and-Red playing left back against Sporting Kansas City.
“It was a great atmosphere, even with the rain. The fans were here supporting me, it was a great feeling,” Pedroso said after the match. “I felt great. The teammates received me very well and supported me."
Sporting Kansas City struggled to create many offensive chances in the first half, allowing D.C. United to dial up the pressure. In the second half, Kansas City settled into the match a bit more and creating more chances. Pedroso was critical to shutting down those opportunities, particularly with Johnny Russell on his side of the pitch.
D.C. United have suffered some defensive injuries of late, so adding Pedroso to the line-up is critical for the Black-and-Red. Head Coach Ben Olsen said he was impressed with Pedroso’s debut, and looks forward to continuing his growth within the club.
“I thought he did well,” Olsen said. “He's a good defender and it is not easy coming into a brand new team and getting a start. There are relationships out there that haven’t necessarily been built yet. He does well with one-on-one situations and has the physicality. I thought his defensive shape overall was good for his first start. We are glad we picked him up and we are looking forward to him growing with this group.”
D.C. United will hit the road this week, traveling to Toronto for a midweek match at BMO Field before playing against the Houston Dynamo on Saturday night.
“We know they're two good teams and to play there is very difficult,” Pedroso said, looking ahead to this week’s schedule. “If we bring two wins away for D.C., it would be a big step for us in this league.”