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A Hater’s Guide to D.C. United

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If two losses wasn’t enough to fuel your hatred.

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MLS: Real Salt Lake at D.C. United Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to the “Hater’s Guide to D.C. United”.

If you’re new, you may be thinking we’ve decided to lob lame jokes and poorly thought out insults at a team because they’ve managed to beat Atlanta United twice despite being one of the worst teams in the league by any measure and we’re bitter and petty and immature and don’t know how to properly handle the emotions that come with losing to D.C. United such as grief, anger and confusion. You’re not wrong. But we’ve also done this for two other teams. Including Orlando City. Whom we own. So there.

As always minimal effort has been put into this. There has been little research, next to zero editing and there’s a legitimate chance that you won’t find any of this entertaining in any way. As one commenter eloquently stated last edition even after reading a disclaimer about how dumb and irrevocably pointless this article would be…

“This is a waste of time. Nothing here folks.”

Prologue

This should have felt like kicking a two-legged, blind puppy while it was on the operating table to have a third leg removed.

I honestly should have felt bad.

This should have been the part of the guide where I explained that I only did this guide because I was asked to, not because I felt good about picking on the lowest member of a 22-team totem pole.

BUT.

Here we are.

To clarify, D.C. United is not good at soccer.

The only teams with as few points are the Colorado “One of our DP’s has a 100,000-dollar salary and has been on loan in Argentina for the last year and a half” Rapids and expansion Minnesota United. Those teams have two games in hand on D.C.

Their stadium is a concrete monolith that doesn’t have the features in place to keep water from, you know, just being there.

It’s a place so devoid of joy, and life, and quality football that DSS’s Parker Cleveland summed it up like this:

“A lot of people don’t know this but RFK Stadium was rejected as a filming location for the bleak post-apocalyptic movie The Road because it was too depressing and looks like it inspired all of the music written by Robert Smith in the last 30 years.”

And yet with their terrible team, their tire fire of a stadium and a current status of being a generally bad organization from top to bottom, they are 2-0 against Atlanta United. They’ve scored 40% of their total goals against Atlanta. They’ve picked up over a quarter of their total points against Atlanta. Their the worst team in MLS. A team with a -24 goal differential. A team that LITERALLY NEEDS THE OTHER TEAM TO SCORE FOR THEM TO WIN AGAINST ANYONE ELSE

With two wins against D.C., The Five Stripes would be third in the Eastern Conference with multiple games in hand on the teams in front of them.

I’m in an extremely bad mood after looking all this stuff up again. I’ve been listening to Killer Mike records for the past hour and a half just to make sure I’m in the right head space for this. These jerks couldn’t have let us have a couple of wins? They let everyone else have a few.

All this to say, I do not feel bad about kicking this blind, two-legged puppy. The darn thing has bit me on the butt too many times.

The City or District or Whatever

Common bonds: Perimeter Traffic, Fire and Racist Mascots

Atlanta and D.C. have more in common than you might think.

Both have a perimeter roadway/parking lot. Washington’s is I-495, or “The Beltway.” It might be worse than 285, however, to my knowledge no D.C. athlete has ever been stuck encircling their perimeter long enough to miss a game.

Atlanta and D.C. are both cities that were torched mostly to the ground sometime in the 1800’s. The British would have done more damage but I heard that most of them are still stuck on The Beltway.*

*I high-fived myself after I wrote this

Finally, Atlanta’s racist mascot is only covertly racist rather than overtly like yours so...erm...yeah, in your face D.C.

Also on fire: The Washington Metro

As reader Davis pointed out, this happens enough to merit a twitter account to document each occurrence.

Most Notable (Only??) Rapper: Wale

Scoreboard reads

Atlanta: 9 billion District of Columbia: -1

Current professional baseball teams who have won a playoff series: None

Person supposed to be buried there: George Washington

They built a crypt underneath the Capital specifically for the first president’s corpse. He decided eternity would be better in Virginia. Virginia. They couldn’t convince the guy they literally named the place after to not go back to Virginia.

Voting representation in congress: None

Weather: Bad

It rains more than Seattle. Which is bad when your stadium doesn’t have the ability to keep water from just being there.

Second person named after: Christopher Columbus

Retrospectively this seems like a bad idea. You know, cause of all the genocide.

Worst thing created by butterfly effect: Orlando City Soccer Club

On March 3, 1845, congress voted inside the Capitol to accept Florida into the Union. Way to go D.C. This is your fault.

The Team

History:

D.C. United began as one of ten charter members of MLS and dominated the earliest version of the league, winning three of the first four MLS Cups, a US Open title, and, impressively, a CONCACAF Champions Cup and Interamerican Cup all before the turn of the millennium.

After winning the 1999 MLS Cup, the franchise dipped into mediocrity for the first time. In 2002, Ray Hudson became manager, a marriage that lasted just two years. Feeling personally responsible for the life-scarring brand of horrible football his teams played in D.C., Hudson then made it his life’s mission to make as many football games as exciting as possible at whatever the cost.

During Hudson’s tenure, D.C. drafted 14-year-old Freddy Adu, a decision made by the D.C. front office on a Wednesday during hour two of the three-hour Happy Hour at an Applebee’s in Alexandria.

The team regrouped after Hudson and took home the 2004 MLS Cup, cementing themselves as the kings of the JV League known as MLS 1.0. They haven’t won MLS Cup since.

There have been minor successes since 2004.

The team reached the 2009 U.S. Open final against a fledgling Seattle Sounders squad. In an effort to bring fans to RFK, former owner Kevin Payne placed a full page ad in the Washington Post imploring fans to show up to the game. The club also created a website called WeWinTrophies.com to promote the game. The website displayed the team’s many trophies from the early days, leaving a space for their inevitable win against Sounders.

They lost.

You can now be the proud owner of the WeWinTrophies.com domain for only 2300 American dollars.

In 2013 the team set a record in futility, winning just three MLS games. In dire straits, the D.C. front office was once again prepared to draft a 14-year-old, but were discouraged when they found the Applebee’s in Alexandria (along with its Happy Hour) permanently closed.

That same 2013 squad somehow won the U.S. Open Cup, dispelling any notion that the competition had any credibility.

After a successful 2014, the team has once again bottomed out to its current state.

Except against Atlanta.

Neat.

Kit:

The kit looks fine.

However, their shirt sponsor is Leidos, a cybersecurity/IT infrastructure/Big Brother type place that works hand in hand with the NSA. The sponsorship is an advertising move to tap into that large portion of the MLS demographic that has an immediate need for world class cybersecurity systems or something? I don’t know, seems sketchy.

Am I saying the entire D.C. United club is a front for the NSA who use RFK Stadium as a location for its most secret operations because it’s one of only a few structures in D.C. capable of surviving a nuclear explosion due to all the concrete and because of the fact they don’t expect anyone to ever actually show up there because dear God who would ever want to watch this team play soccer?

Yes. That’s obviously exactly what I’m saying.

Best player: Luciano Acosta, who has scored twice since April 9, both times against Atlanta.

Luciano Acosta walked into the office. He was sweating. Everyone in the office was sweating.

He realized the room he had entered was decorated like that one Applebee’s in Alexandria. Wale played over the soundsystem. “It’s always Wale,” Luciano thought to himself.

He had only been here a couple of times before. That was just to get some details ironed out. Today he needed to finalize the deal.

He took a seat. The chair either leaned back too far or pushed you uncomfortably forward if you tried to sit up straight.

“Is everything in order?” he sputtered.

The figure in the chair behind the desk in front of Luciano had yet to turn around. Two horns peeked over the ridge of the chair.

“Yes.” The figure boomed.

“I’ll score against them every time?”

“Every time.”

“No matter what?

“Yes.”

“What if I have to run through their entire defense and can only slowly kick the ball towards the goal from 20-yards out?”

“The defense will forget how to defense and the ball will roll gently past the keeper.”

“What if I’m not particularly good at soccer and have no real discernable skill? Will I still score?”

“Yes. The keeper will kick the ball directly to you for seemingly no reason, giving you an easy shot.”

“Wow! It’s better than I could have ever imagined!”

The figure said nothing.

Luciano began to leave, but as he reached the door, the figure spoke.

“Luciano.”

“Yes, Satan?”

“You owe me your soul.”

“I know.”

As Luciano imagined the two pointless wins his team would have over Atlanta during the middle of the second worst season in team history thanks to his goals, his heart filled with joy.

He had never been happier.

Mascot: Talon

The original Talon was a weird, Ibis-looking bird thing that hid a flask underneath his right wing while on the job. Talon, though beloved, was “asked to resign” after an undisclosed workplace incident. The lawsuit involving this incident is still making its way through the judicial system and cannot be discussed in detail at this time.

The new Talon is an obvious NSA plant who’s too clean and straight-edge to be remotely entertaining. Just the way they want it.

New stadium - Audi Field

D.C. United will move away from RFK Stadium next season to a brand new soccer specific stadium leaving the NSA exposed which should give the franchise a much needed breath of fresh air as long as Audi leaves enough fresh air for us to breathe.

Ownership:

The team’s original owner was George Soros, a man who still owes me money for the protests I’ve been attending.

The current owners are William Chang, a primary investor in the San Francisco Giants, and Erick Thohir and Jason Levien, minority owners of the Philadelphia 76ers. San Francisco is the worst team in baseball this season. Philadelphia has been a terrible basketball team for many years. D.C. United is extremely #OnBrand for these guys.

Reader Opinions

Charlie from the top rope!

Beltway?

Still sounds neat.

It gave us The Wire so...

Build. That. Wall.

On the Metro you just catch fire

Prayers up

No comment.

Conclusion

D.C. is a relic of another age in MLS. They have been lapped by the field. They are the old guy in the office who once had great sales numbers but is being outworked, out-hustled and out-thought by younger more talented people. D.C. United thinking that a new stadium will give them an edge is like that old guy thinking the Blackberry he just bought will put him on an even playing field with all these young folk.

We should win 5-0.

Dear God, if we don’t win today I might do something drastic. Did you read this, NSA?! SOMETHING. DRASTIC.