We are told the cabana seats with dipping pools at Jacksonville’s EverBank Field are nice, but this was a business trip for D.C. United. The Black and Red used their friendly against England’s Fulham FC to prepare players for a busy month ahead.
With several starters back in Washington, United put out a starting eleven comprised mostly of players who have been used as substitutes or have received little of no playing time. Fulham also went with a younger lineup and in the end prevailed 3-0 on the strength of a hat trick from Moussa Dembele who only played in one match last season.
D.C. United started Andrew Dyskstra in goal with Bobby Boswell and Conor Shanosky serving as the center backs. Kyle Porter received an opportunity at right back, while Taylor Kemp played on the opposite side. The midfield had Lewis Neal, on the left flank and Alex Caskey on the right side. Lewis Neal was the holding midfielder with Collin Martin in front of him. Michael Seaton and Conor Doyle played up top.
1. The score does not tell the story.
Overall head coach Ben Olsen was pleased with the game. He noted that United had about 65 percent of the possession, but added "we were just missing that right idea in the final third." Olsen said it was an important lesson for his young lineup because for all the possessions, United paid for "three huge defensive mistakes."
2. Michael Seaton has bright future.
Michael Seaton is only 18 years old and has only featured in three league games, but he was ready to seize the moment against Fulham. Olsen said Seaton had an "eventful evening" against Fulham. While Seaton did not score, he impressed with a few threatening plays and as Olsen noted was "a handful" for Fulham to deal with.
3. There are injury concerns.
United will have to evaluate Andrew Dykstra who did not play in the second half because of a leg injury. Kyle Porter suffered an ankle injury and Alex Caskey a knee injury.