Happy Thursday, everyone. We had a champion crowned last night, so let’s get to it…

US Open Cup champions! Houston Dynamo upset Messi-less Inter Miami (MLS)

Congratulations to our very own Ben Olsen as he leads the Houston Dynamo to a 2-1 victory in the U.S. Open Cup final over Inter Miami! The win for Olsen comes 10 years after leading D.C. United to the U.S. Open Cup (against every single odd available in history). Nevermind that Lionel Messi was hurt, Houston was the better team on the night.

Bay FC names Albertin Montoya as first coach in club’s history (ESPN)

Bay FC now has their first head coach, as they announced the hire of Albertin Montoya. Washington Spirit fans know him as he was most recently the interim coach for the Spirit last season after Kris Ward was fired.

Afcon: Morocco to host in 2025 and Kenya-Uganda-Tanzania in 2027 (BBC)

Morocco will host the 2025 Africa Cup of Nations, while Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania will host the 2027 tournament. The 2027 Africa Cup of Nations will be the first in East Africa since 1976.

AC Milan: Serie A club plan to move out of San Siro to new 70,000-capacity stadium (BBC)

AC Milan look to propose a move away from the San Siro, hoping to build a 70,000 seat stadium in the southern part of Milan. This is in response to repeated failed attempts to renovate the San Siro, which they currently share with rivals Inter Milan.

Vinicius returns as Real Madrid ease past Las Palmas (ESPN)

Vini is back. He returned to the field for the first time in a month as Real Madrid beat Las Palmas to rebound from their loss over the weekend in the Madrid Derby.

Bella Bixby took to social media today to share some deeply personal thoughts, and it took a ton of strength to do that. Thoughts continue to be with Bixby and her family.

Aston Villa: Jacqui Oatley says women’s team ‘dreading’ WSL opener because of ‘clingy’ shirts (BBC)

Aston Villa Women are “dreading” their league opener because of their jerseys being “clingy” when sweat soaked. Hopefully they can find some solution for this so the players don’t have to worry about it on the field.

Jorge Vilda: Ex-Spain head coach being investigated as part of Luis Rubiales criminal case (BBC)

Jorge Vilda is apparently part of the investigation into Luis Rubiales’ criminal case. They just can’t leave the news.

That’s it for today. Enjoy the day.

ByDonald Wine II

Donald Wine has been a soccer fan since he first kicked a ball as a kid. He moved to DC in 2007 and quickly joined the soccer scene, helping to establish the DC chapter of the American Outlaws and serving as one of the capos and drummers for over a decade. He is currently the manager of Stars & Stripes FC, but this community is where he got his start, and he continues to contribute to anything DC soccer related for this site because he enjoys it so much.

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Great to see Ben have success, when he was hired by Houston their message board was decidedly skeptical.
And Donald, good to see you on the plane the other morning!

Bryan McEachern

Well, this really pokes the eye of DC United’s front office. I don’t dislike, on a personal level, the FO, but the times have got to change (channel Bob Dylan). I have one year left on my “contract” and I am gone. I doubt I will even waste money on Apple TV MLS product. I think they have effectively bread my generation out. This isn’t vitriol, it’s planning for retirement.

Brendan Cartwright

Ben seems happy and rejuvenated to be away from DC.
Lucho seems happy and rejuvenated to be away from DC.
Lucy Rushton seems happy and rejuvenated to be away from DC.
I don’t really know how Hernan Losada is doing, but Montreal is in a pretty decent place.
Wayne is back in DC, but is unhappy about the lack of players coming in and in the radio silence around his contract.
If you want to stretch a little, you can also point out that the GMs of Cincinnati and Houston (Chris Albright and Pat Onstad) are both former United players/coaches, yet seem pretty happy away from DC.

I wonder if there’s a common denominator here.

Bryan McEachern

Common denominator is an understatement.


Josh Wolfe may or may not be happy in Austin, but there’s a lot of talk that he’s lost the locker room….


I’m happy that the time away from the sidelines helped him out so much. He didn’t sound like himself in the months leading up to getting canned (I’m sure COVID chaos) had a hand in that. Now he’s in an organization that seems to have a real plan and something to show for it.

Brendan Cartwright

Benny definitely seemed burnt out by the end of his time here. He visibly wasn’t enjoying himself, and he sounded deflated in all his interviews. The one time that was different was during the Legends Game as they were closing down RFK. He looked so happy to be playing out on the field with his old friends and teammates. If you’ve ever seen a video of a cow that’s been kept inside all its life, and then let free to frolic in a field, that’s kind of what it reminded me of. Whatever degradations he had suffered, the joy was still there.

The video of the Legends Game, and the video recapping United’s journey to the 2013 US Open Cup are two of my absolute favorite pieces of media that United has ever produced, and of course they’ve deleted both of them from their YouTube page.

Anyway, I’m glad Benny got a second shot. I honestly didn’t think he’d do much more than Paulo Nagamura, but I’m glad to be mistaken. He’s won a trophy as a coach in DC. He’s won a championship as an executive with the Spirit. He’s won a trophy in Houston. That’s not bad.

Congrats also to Steve Clark and Brad Smith, as well as to Pat Onstad and Francisco Tobar, all former United players and employees who are now US Open Cup champions.

Bryan McEachern

Well said.


Ben picking up and throwing a perfect, distance, upper 90 goal in that game is one of my favorite DCU moments

Will Nelson

US Women’s Eagles Sevens are playing in the Fiji Invitational this weekend ahead of the HSBC Women’s Sevens tournament starting: https://eagles.rugby/news/usa-womens-sevens-to-compete-in-fiji-invitational-ahead-of-2023-world-rugby-svns-2023921

Bryan McEachern

Unrelated, Castore makes good products. I have no idea what is going on with Villa’s shirts. Crazy. Why don’t they use the production models for Rangers and Newcastle? Weird.

Will Nelson

The anger from World Rugby tier 2 nations (i.e. USA, Canada, Chile, Uruguay, etc) about the changes World Rugby has introduced continues. This time from the coach of Chile, who beat the US in a home and away series for the last Americas slot, after they lost to England in pool play the Rugby World cup: https://www.americasrugbynews.com/2023/09/23/pablo-lemoine-hits-out-at-world-rugbys-handling-of-tier-2/

World Rugby’s “World League”: https://www.reuters.com/sports/rugby-rugbys-new-world-league-kick-off-2026-2023-07-01/

Will Nelson

I missed this last week: https://www.americasrugbynews.com/2023/09/20/mlr-notes-dc-signs-rob-harley-trn-adds-english-premiership/

In their OGDC have signed former Scotland international Rob Harley along with several other signings ahead of the 2024 season. Additionally, it has been announced that The Rugby Network (TRN) will have exclusive broadcast rights for the English Premiership (top flight rugby in England) for the next 2 seasons. And something I didn’t want to see about TRN in the last sentence here:

It’s worth noting that TRN will not be continuing its partnership with service provider RugbyPass, which is owned by World Rugby. It means RugbyPass articles and editorials will no longer appear on TRN. The league is set to announce a new provider for TRN next month. League sources indicate the arrangement is more streamlined contractually and allows for the evolution to a subscription model.

Last edited 2 months ago by Will Nelson
Will Nelson

Oops exclusive broadcast rights for the English Premiership in North America.

Brendan Cartwright

Just a little thought experiment.

DC hasn’t inducted anyone into the Hall of Tradition since Kevin Payne in 2015.

Only 8 players are in there (John Harkes, Marco Etcheverry, Raul Diaz Arce, Eddie Pope, Jeff Agoos, Richie Williams, Ben Olsen, Jaime Moreno), along with Betty D’Anjollel, Danilo Noel Diron, and Payne.

The guidelines are that the inductee is deemed by the club to be crucial to the club’s success.

For awhile, one or two people were being inducted every year. I do like it when a Hall of Tradition like this is fairly exclusive, so having this gap isn’t super worrying to me. But there are still plenty of people in this organization’s history worth honoring.

Who would be your next inductee?
Tony Sanneh?
Christian Gomez?
Luciano Emilio?
Bill Hamid?
Francisco Tobar?
Dave Johnson?

Let’s say you can only pick one person. There’s a number of players from the early years that helped the club win a bucket of trophies. And there’s other more recent players that might have won a trophy or two, but had particular longevity, or scoring prowess, or won individual awards, or maybe just connected in a meaningful way with the club. Does a fan like Big Rob Gillespie merit consideration, or is a recognition like officially naming it the “Chico Stand” more appropriate?

Let’s have some fun and relive some glory here!


Bill Hamid has to be inducted at some point. Other than Ben Olsen and perhaps Jaime Moreno, there’s never been another player who’s so DCU. And what I mean by that, is that I always got the sense that both Ben and Bill loved the club a bit more than the club deserved.


First, I think Hamid in a few years–when it’s absolutely, positively clear his professional career as a player is over. Gomito–I’d add him in a heartbeat. I think Dave Johnson in a couple of years–he still works for DCU doing radio on games. There is a stain on his name right now but with a little time and distance, Bruce Arena needs to be added.

Brendan Cartwright

Should Michael Fassbender be enshrined both for portraying Thomas Rongen in a movie, and for “upgrades” made to the stadium as Magneto in X-Men: Days of Future Past?

Bryan McEachern

Ryan Nelson comes to mind. It’s not his fault he got poached by the EPL. Similar for Tony Sanneh going to Bundesliga. In time, Hamid is a must. Certainly, Gomez and Emilio deserve consideration.

Dave Johnson is a must. This should be sooner than later.


First, kudos to Ben. What a class act he is, a genuinely nice guy. I hope at some point he returns to DC soccer in some capacity. That said, it was time for him to leave. The fan base was burned out on him and unless you’re winning championships continuously, when you coach a long time with one team your players start to tune you out. Alex Ferguson and Helmut Schoen are the rare exceptions. And Houston is doing it playing beautiful soccer. I can’t criticize DCU for parting ways with Ben–it was time for both parties. Actually, the person that should be rethinking stuff is Michele Kang. I supported the decision to hire Mark Parsons. And on paper, Krikorian is a great hire. But the facts are the facts–the Washington Spirit started fine and have since struggled–even with their WC contingent back. I understand Kang wanting to put her own team together–it’s her money. But I’d love for Benny to still be affiliated with DC in some fashion. Maybe in the future, after Rooney leaves and Houston wins an MLS Cup.

Second, the Aston Villa kits are dreadful. They hold on to sweat. They look like you were wearing a baggy cotton T-shirt that then had a hose turned on it for 2 minutes. The men have complained too. Changes color when wet, holds on to moisture so it feels heavy and sodden. I bet it would feel terrible in cold weather (I know, I know–none of that in England, I’m just talking “what if’s”).

Third, it’s an outrage that Vilda is a finalist for Women’s UEFA coach of the year. Some idiots may actually vote for him. The Spanish women won in spite of him, not because. If you read about the stuff that led to the letter from “Las 15” last year and then Alexia’s public comments this year–just abysmal and unprofessional. I’m serious–read about the Spanish coaching and administration of the Women’s national team and you’ll be outraged. Taking multiple commercial flight connections from Spain to Canada and arriving less than 48 hours before a World Cup match. Forcing women to leave their bedroom doors open until midnight so the coach can confirm they’re (a) following curfew and (b) not having sex. Must ask permission before leaving the hotel to go shopping. And then must show receipts and what you bought to the coaching staff. Pinching butts of players. It all started with Querada and Vilda continued the same atmosphere. Absolutely appalling.

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