D.C. United Set to Consolidate Lead, but the Jamaican Side Looking to Upset
D.C. United will try to get back on the winning track when they face Jamaica during the CONCACAF Competition at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C. Jose Arqueta photography
After uninspiring performance against San Jose Earthquakes in the Major League Soccer (MLS) over the weekend, D.C. United return to continental action when they host Jamaican side Montego Bay.
 
Despite their spirited win last week in Panama, the Washington based club faces an opponent who have less pedigree in football but a very formidable and organized side. D.C. United is expected to put the defeat they suffered at the hands of San Jose Earthquakes and focus on Wednesday’s grueling encounter. A victory for them will will see them soaring above the group opponents with 6 points from 2 games. It is likely most of United key players who were absent from their weekend defeat to Earthquakes will be available for this game after suffering various degrees of injuries.

Some of the Key players expected back includes agile goalkeeper Bill Hamid (if he is fit) Eddie Johnson, Fabian Espindola, Chris Potius, and Michael Farfan. The Black and Red side will have to play above themselves to win Wednesday night encounter after their poor performance over the weekend to bring back the smiles back on their unflinching supporters. Victory on Wednesday night will depend largely on depend on determination, the zeal, and how they utilize their chances.

As Coach Ben Olsen explained to the median in an interview over the weekend after their loss to the Quakes, he believes wasting begging chances in high profile games will certainly cost you at the end of the day. “We got all the chances against the Quakes but squandered them, but they scored from the half chances they created, that’s the difference, disappointed Olsen reiterated." Their defensive network marshalled around Kofi Opare, Taylor Kemp, Bobby Boswell, and Sean Franklin will have to be very compact, timely on their tackles, and more concentrated for the entire duration of the game to avoid any threat from their opponent. Conceding no goal for the entire duration of the game will go a long way to help the team.

The midfielders should make sure they win most of the battles, avoid bad tackles and not to give the Jamaicans space to operate. On a god day I expect the likes of Perry Kitchen, Davy Arnaud, Conor Doyle and Chris Pontius take control in the middle and neutralize any threat from the Jamaicans.  Strikers of D.C. United spearheaded by Alvaro Saborio, Eddie Johnson and Fabian Espinodola, will have to take their chances to consolidate their supremacy in the group.  Coach Ben Olsen’s attackers should keep their composure when scoring opportunity comes their way.  His strikers need to be more swift and potent upfront. Montego Bay United FC Coach Tim Hankinson and his charges will come into this game very determined to make an impact.

A win or lose wouldn’t be a big deal for his side but are expected to deploy a strategy to frustrate the home team. Their reliable strikers Williams and Ottey will be a hard nut to crack but I expect the Red and Black defenders to keep them in check. In a nutshell, I strongly believe D.C. United will be the favorites going for this encounter and will need a win to maintain their status in the CONCACAF competition, but Montego Bay United FC , look dangerous and  can cause an upset.
 
Written by: Yaw T. Adofo