Hi there, weather’s been nice and I’ve been outside for most of it, and am still washing off sunscreen, so let’s dive in, as it were.

Recaps of D.C. United’s 2-1 win over Inter Miami by us and WaPo.

Recaps of the Washington Spirit’s 1-1 draw with Racing Louisville by us and WaPo.

Pro Soccer: Monterey Bay F.C. beats Loudoun United (Monterey Herald): Aside from not knowing MoBay was winless in six before beating Loudoun, this got out of hand late for a Loudoun team who’s now winless in their last eight (across two competitions) and transferred a potential breakout player following disputes over playing time and position.

Wayne Rooney goes back to school to finish his coaching exams and must complete one daunting hurdle (US Times Post): Apparently he’s close to getting his coaching license with the FA.

DC United legends, youth soccer players test their shooting skills at MLS All-Star Roadshow opener (WTOP): Hey how about that.

Selección de Honduras presenta lista provisional de jugadores para encarar la Copa Oro 2023 (El Heraldo): Unsure if in the Gold Cup news this was known, but Andy Najar’s on the provisional for the H.

Ben Olsen chasing “One More Night of Glory” (US Soccer): If you need an Open Cup team to root for this week, I have a suggestion.

ElMedkhar shining in expanded role with Loudoun United (Loudoun Times): Nice look at a good kid.

Anyway that’s all from me, go enjoy more decent June weather before it gets ugly!

ByRyan Keefer

Doing D.C./Loudoun United things on here.

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Talonesque #

If you didn’t watch the US U-20 men’s team lose to Uruguay yesterday, be extremely thankful that your time was spent better. For a team that made the quarterfinals, this was the lowest IQ game from the vast majority of the players I have ever seen. Uruguay respected our athleticism and speed, simply stayed compact in a 4-2-3-1 mid block, and waited for our mistakes, and let me tell you, legion they truly were.

Slonina continues to be an excellent prospect, had no chance on the two goals, especially the own goal that, well, was atrocious. Parades came on as a sub, looked bright, clearly head and shoulders above his teammates in terms of speed of thought and timing. Cade Cowell might still have uses going forward, the rest, scrap heap.


Great article about Benny and Houston and the USOC. Man, I’d bleed for that guy.

Bryan McEachern

Ditto. I have always been a fan of USOC. It’s worth winning. I hope DCU one day will approach it like we used to. Trophies talk, indeed they do. Pulling for Bennie and the Houston squad in this reach will be fun.

David Rusk



Looks like Loudoun is in full dumpster fire mode at the moment. I saw them get skinned by a B side Columbus in the Open Cup and Armenakas was subbed out very early. (Partly caused by Samake’s comical DOGSO red.). Seems as though things have gotten worse. Maybe Ryan Martin isn’t the right choice there. Since there is new ownership, maybe there will be a plan to develop a competent competitive side like Pittsburgh or Tampa Bay. The stadium is a little jewel, the surroundings are nice, but it’s not worth driving out there to watch bad soccer.


Pretty disappointed since they seemed to have gotten off to a decent start after years as a developmental punching bag.

Stunned Duck

Pablo Maurer just posted an interview with Wayne Rooney in The Athletic this morning. Paywalled, of course, but noted here b/c it’s crucial subject matter for us. Wayne has some interesting perspectives. For example:

[Maurer]: You’ve played fairly direct this year — staying defensively sound and playing off Christian Benteke going forward. Does it differ from how you wanted to play when you arrived last year?

[Rooney]: No. If you look into how we play, in possession it’s practically the same. We still have the two center backs and Victor Palsson steps into a midfield position. So how we play in possession hasn’t really changed. What’s changed a bit is how we play out of possession, which has helped us be a bit more solid really. Defensively we’ve made some slight changes but otherwise, it’s exactly the same as we’ve been doing all season.

That’s not really how I would have described it from the outside, so I found this educational. Overall, it’s the quality we’ve come to expect from Pablo.

Last edited 5 months ago by Stunned Duck

Donovan Pines in the Starting Eleven for “Team of the Matchday” and Klich is a sub. I think that’s appropriate.

Brendan Cartwright

I would have loved to see Ted Ku-DiPietro put away his chance, and for Tyler Miller to keep a clean sheet. But the team overall did well enough, considering how many games they’ve had. Miami did just about all they could to hand the game over, and thankfully United took advantage at long last. Now they can get some key guys some rest, and maybe some other players return from injury.


This team though is so wasteful when it comes to scoring their chances. So wasteful. More than the occasional mental lapses in defense, I think several points have been dropped because we didn’t put away enough chances created. I also want to know what happened to Andy’s ability to score? He had like 5 goals his rookie season, didn’t he? I often feel that even though he’s our most skillful player with the ball, he has completely forgotten where the net is. Andy lift your head and aim the ball correctly. Come on! Also, can someone confirm if Donovan at this point has more goals than Taxi for the year? Super odd.

Brendan Cartwright

Taxi has really struggled with finding his place in this system (he has 3 goals in 11 games, to Pines’s 3 goals in 12 games). It’s a little surprising, because he was very effective with Rapid Vien when he was paired with a big striker (Orlando’s Ercan Kara). I think he and Benteke have a pretty good rapport. They’ve both done each other’s celebrations after scoring. But they haven’t quite figured out how to really maximize each other’s abilities in their partnership yet.

Although, if you count Taxi and Ku-DiPietro’s stats together as “second forward,” they have six goals to go with Benteke’s 8, and that’s not too bad.

Brendan Cartwright

As for Andy, Pines is now five goals away from catching him for the title of most goals by a homegrown player.

Talonesque #

For me, it’s actually less about clinical finishing, though that could be better, more about good interplay, and, maybe most importantly for Benteke, good, consistent crossing. I actually don’t think the team has quite got the chemistry right going forward, and I’d particularly like to see Klich step up to this challenge and unlock defenses a bit more with passing.

Brendan Cartwright

I had really high hopes for Jeahze crossing the ball into Benteke when he was signed. That may still materialize, but it obviously hasn’t happened yet.


If only we hadn’t run the best crosser in the league out on a rail…

Talonesque #

Short term, yeah, Gressel was a great pro who could cross like a champ. Long term, it’s still a possibility that choosing Hopkins will yield fruit, the kid is going through a bump for the first time in his fledgling career. He has the upside to provide what Gressel did and a bit more in other areas.

We may well look back on it in three years with hindsight as a horrible move, but I’m willing to move forward and see if Jackson comes good.


I think that’s a little revisionist. First, we needed to get cap room in order to sign a bunch of players like Benteke and Palsson (and Morrison). Second, we weren’t planning on playing with wingbacks. It’s hard to justify Julian Gressel as a right back. Of course, now we’re playing wingbacks. But at the time, we needed to clear cap space.


We are pretty kind to opposing teams in front of the goal. We generate enough good chances that we should be winning pretty comfortably more often. It might get better if the guys can stay healthy long enough to consistently see the field.

About Najar… he’s really never been a big goal-scorer though. Great, tricky winger and RB obviously. He seems not to have the instinct or coolness in the box that guys on our front line do, and that’s totally ok.

Will Nelson

Major League Rugby’s (MLR) week 16 is in the books. Old Glory DC (OGDC) dominated NOLA Gold (NOLA) in their 28-15 win in the muggy tropical heat of June in New Orleans. OGDC and New York look to be pulling away and securing the 2nd and 3rd seeds in the east. Though they are battling for who takes which seed and hosts the East’s Wild Card round game.
NOLA came out strong scoring a try, but not converting it in the 3rd minute. OGDC quickly responded in the 6’ via rolling maul off a line out on the NOLA 5 meter line dotting it down for a try that wasn’t converted from an acute angle.  OGDC would take the lead in the 12’ with multiple passages quickly moving the ball across the line to a clean break past
the edge of NOLA’s defensive line to dot the ball down in the corner.  The try was again not converted from an acute angle leaving the score at 10-5.  OGDC would score again in the 18’ with a rolling maul off a line out from outside the 5-meter line after a great 50-22 kick.  A 50-22 kick is a box kick from one team’s own half (demarcated by the 50-meter line) outside into touch inside the opposition 22-meter line resulting in a line out for the kicking team.  OGDC again would fail to convert the try, bringing the score to 15-5.  Later in the first half OGDC would score a penalty kick goal from way back, but straight on brining the score to 18-5.  That would be the score at half time despite NOLA going down a man for 10 minutes with a yellow card starting in the 33’. 
The second half started quietly with NOLA finishing out the yellow card period without conceding. NOLA would get a penalty kick goal early in the half to bring the score to 18-8. Then in the 64’ OGDC would turn NOLA Gold over and quickly advance the ball. After a carry broke NOLA’s defensive line just inside the 50-meter line (midfield), the ball was passed before being brought to the ground and carried into the try zone on a breakaway bringing the score to 23-5 as that try was not converted either.   Then in the 70th minute OGDC thought they had stopped a rolling maul just short of the try zone, but it was not to be as OGDC were adjudged by the Television Match Official (TMO) to have illegally collapsed the maul. Thus, a penalty try was awarded to NOLA bringing the score to 23-15. This breathed life into NOLA as they would fight hard to bring the score closer. OGDC would be shown a yellow shortly after the award of the penalty try to go down a man for 14 minutes. In the 71’ a box kick reception would be mishandled by NOLA and bounce into an OGDC player’s hands. Several quick passages of play and OGDC would break through NOLA scrambling back on defense to score a dagger of a try. Once again OGDC would fail to convert the try leaving the score at 28-15. NOLA would battle and try and score a try and covert it to lose by 7 points or less for a bonus point in the standings. OGDC would stand tall for the rest of the match and stuff them despite being down a man for a significant portion of the remaining time. The game would end at 28-15 to OGDC.
The win and 4+ tries would leave OGDC in 2nd place in the East on 38 points and securing a playoff spot. OGDC will be in the playoffs for the first time in franchise history. New York would dominate Dallas 43-13 and stay right behind OGDC on 37 points in 3rd place. Atlanta’s loss on Friday night to New England left them in 4th on 27 points. NOLA would remain in 5th on 26 points. Toronto’s loss to Houston would leave them in last place at 15 points and eliminated from playoff contention. As I mentioned above, OGDC and New York are battling it out for 2nd. Conceivably it’s possible for Atlanta to catch New York, but they would have to win out and score 4 or more tries in both remaining games and New York would have to lose out. Atlanta hosts New York this Saturday evening, June 10th live on FS2 at 8 PM EDT. OGDC visits Houston Saturday night who are in 3rd place in the western conference.

David Rusk

A very professional report worthy of a DP staffer, Will. I hope that Sarah et al can be convinced that DP ought to embrace OGDC rugby as another DMV sport to be covered.

Will Nelson

Thank you, I just feel like Rugby is a great sport and deserves to be followed. Especially since the US is hosting the Men’s Rugby World Cup in 2031 and the Women’s Rugby World Cup in 2033.

Though I did notice I had a couple typos in the comment this evening. Oh well, that’s what I get for writing it as a break from coding for work.


After seeing you comment on a couple of the Monday Freedom Kicks, I can say you got me hooked. Kind of got into XFL cause NFL seemed slower but the pace of rugby is amazing. After soccer I can honestly say rugby is my second favorite sport now, sorry baseball lol.

Does anybody know if the Stampede goes to games?

Will Nelson

I’ve not seen any banners or identifiers, but that’s not to say they don’t attend.

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