28 July 2006

Match 11.21 Preview: At Real Salt Lake

Match #: 11.21

Opponent: Real Salt Lake

Real Salt Lake, 4-10-5, 17 pts, 6th in West Conference, 12th in MLS
DC United, 13-1-6, 45 pts, 1st in East Conference , 1st in MLS


Previous Meeting: Real Salt Lake 1 : 3 DC United (DCenters Remembers)

Suggested Pregame Music: According to Real Salt Lake, Toto's "Africa". According to DC United, Talking Heads' "Crosseyed and Painless"

The Stakes: Wow, all that kerfluffle from Brandenton earlier in the season seems to have died away, hasn't it? All-in-all, that's probably a good thing. Ellinger and Nowak have enough to occupy their minds without being distracted by continuing a petty war of words (now for fans, go right ahead. I would be disappointed in RSL's fans if there wasn't at least one chant about the matter Saturday night.)

For DC United, this is a game where a strong performance might settle some butterflies after Chicago took it to them last week. The stakes for DC a question of where their playoff placement will be.

For Real Salt Lake, things are looking a bit more ugly. Their Front Office is abusing their supporters, their coach is a mess and should be fired, and their players seem to be constantly adjusting to one injury or another. I honestly think that the best thing for RSL right now is for DC to destroy them by three or four goals, get Ellinger fired, and perhaps a Gansler or Mo Johnston can come in, start building a better team, and earn some hope for their suffering fans before the season begins. (Though for Mo, I can imagine that might seem a bit tedious at this point)

As QuarterVolley (see below for link) points out, this is also a nice Kreis v. Moreno showdown. Provided that Dave Lifton is incorrect, and Jamie is uninjured. IF he is carrying an injury, that's a different matter.

Things I'd like to see: Rest for Moreno, perhaps another 45 minute outing for Christian Gomez. I know that might cost us points, but with those players not getting an all-star break like most of the league, it could help. They've earned a breather.

Previews from the DCUniverse: QuarterVolley, DCSunDevil

Expected Yield: 2.5 points.

D's Location: Sofa sofa sofa.

Last Words: Saint Mark.