D.C. United will look to shake off last year’s dreary results with a roster revamp and the long-awaited opening of Audi Field.
Head coach: Ben Olsen
2017 finish: 9-20-5, 32 points; No. 11 East.
D.C. United knew changes were needed midway through the 2017 season and began a roster overhaul in the summer transfer window. The club brought in five new players, headlined by U.S. men’s national team winger Paul Arriola. That shakeup provided a brief spark, but the club closed out the season on 1-5-1 run and tied the L.A. Galaxy for last place in the league. D.C. United was the only team to lose 20 times and had the worst goal differential (-29).
Gotta have faith: The club’s management said it does, and head coach Ben Olsen will stick around for an eighth season.
A fresh start all around. Several new players – including at the goalkeeper position as longtime starter Bill Hamid left for Denmark – and a shiny new stadium should help with that. D.C. United leaves historic RFK Stadium behind for soccer-specific Audi Field, but the new digs won’t be ready until summer so United’s schedule is stacked with road games to kick off 2018.
General Manger Dave Kasper told the Washington Post, “We have a lot of work to do, but we’re very excited about what we can put together in this new building.”
Season opener: March 3 @ Orlando City, 7:30 p.m.
Signings – M Ulises Segura (traded $50,000 in General Allocation Money to NYCFC for his rights); M Junior Moreno.
Trades – Acquired D Frederic Brillant from NYCFC in exchange for $75,000 of General Allocation Money and a 2018 international slot; Acquired F Darren Mattocks from Portland Timbers in exchange for a 2018 International slot; Acquired GK David Ousted from Vancouver in exchange for natural second-round pick in 2018 SuperDraft.
Re-signed – GK Steve Clark.
Contract option declined – GK Bill Hamid; F Deshorn Brown; M Julian Buescher; D Sean Franklin; GK Eric Klenofsky; D Chris Korb; D Chris Odoi-Atsem; M Lloyd Sam; M Rob Vincent.
Contract expired – M Patrick Nyarko; M Marcelo Sarvas.
Other – M Chris Rolfe (retired).