Wednesday, June 7, 2017

DC United Greatest All-Time Team

MLS Cup 1996
Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

This is my selection of a 25 member all-time team for the club.  The number 25 was chosen because it is the official squad size for the Champions' League.

DC United competes as a member of the Eastern Conference in Major League Soccer (MLS), the top level of professional American soccer. The franchise began play in 1996 as one of the ten charter clubs of the league and won the first ever MLS Cup the same year. It is one of the most successful clubs in the MLS. At the time of writing, it is one of two American clubs that has won the CONCACAF Champions League.
2004 MLS Cup

GK: Nick Rimando (USA)
Rimando's father is of Filipino descent and his mother is of Mexican descent.  He played for Miami Fusion, DC United and Real Salt Lake.  He is one of the best keeper in MLS.  At the time of writing, he was capped 21 times for the United States.  He is mainly a backup to Tim Howard.
Nick Rimando

GK: Bill Hamid (USA)
At the time of writing, he spent his entire career with DC United. He was MLS Goalkeeper of the Year in 2014.  Capped only twice at this moment.

GK: Troy Perkins (USA)
In 2005, he joined DC United, but used mainly as a backup.  During the 2006 season, Perkins was the starting goalkeeper for United, playing thirty of thirty-two games. He was also named 2006 MLS Goalkeeper of the Year, Best XI, and voted to the 2006 All Star Team. Perkins finished the 2007 MLS season with a 1.10 goals against average, eight shutouts, and sixteen wins, the most in the league. He also played for Vålerenga in Norway, Portland Timbers, Montreal and Seattle Sounders. Capped 7 times.

RB: Bryan Namoff (USA)
Drafted by DC United in 2001, he would spend most of his career with them.  Along with teammates Bobby Boswell, Brian Carroll, and Joshua Gros, Namoff made his first (and, to date, only) international appearance for the United States men's national soccer team on January 20, 2007, against Denmark.
Bryan Namoff 
RB: Andy Najar (Honduras)
Najaf moved to the US when he was 13. He played 3 seasons with  DC United.   At the time of writing, he is Anderlecht in Belgium, a club he joined in 2013.  ASlthrough he lived in the US since he was 13, he did not have his US citizenship when he chose to play for Honduras. He was on their 2014 World Cup team.

CB: Eddie Pope (USA)
Pope is considered one of the greatest American defenders.  He spent 11 seasons with DC United, where they dominated MLS in 1990's. He won the MLS defender of the Year award in 1997.   He was capped 82 times.  He went to France 1998, Korea/Japan 2002 and Germany 2006. He is a member of the National Soccer Hall of Fame. 
Eddie Pope

CB/DM: Ryan Nelsen (New Zealand)
He spent his early career playing NCAA soccer in the US.  He played for DC United, Blackburn Rovers, Tottenham Hotspurs and Queens Park Rangers.   He was the All-Whites captain at the WC 2010.

CB: Bobby Boswell (USA)
Undrafted in 2005, he signed for DC United that same year.  His breakout was 2006, where he was the starting centerback for United and named the 2006 MLS Defender of the Year and selected as a member of the Best XI. He then played for Houston Dynamo from 2008 to 2013.  He returned to DC United in 2013.  Earned 3 caps. 

CB/LB: Carlos Llamosa (Colombia/USA)
Llamosa began his professional football career in 1986 with Colombian third division club Colmena. In 1990, he moved to Colombian first division side Huila. In 1991, Llamosa emigrated to the United States to join the rest of his family.  In the US, he gave up the sport for a few years before playing in the A-League.  In 1997, he joined the MLS, notably played for Bruce Arena with DC United.  He later played for New England Revolution and Chivas USA.  Capped 29 times.  He appeared at the WC Finals in 2002.

LB: Jeff Agoos (USA)
Agoos played college soccer with Virginia. He joined DC united in 1996.  He won 5 MLS Cup titles, a record.  He was named the Best XI All-time MLS team in 2005.  He earned 137 caps for the USA, starting in 1988.  However,  he did not play his WC games until the 2002 WC Finals.

DM: Clyde Simms (USA)
Undrafted in 2003, he played in the A-League.  He impressed during a training camp with the USMNT.  He earned a contract with DC United in 2005, where he stayed until 2011.  In 2012, he joined New England Revolution.  Capped once.

CM/DM: Richie Williams (USA)
Williams graduated from University of Virgina, where he played NCAA soccer.  He played in the US and Scotland before the launch of MLS in 1996.  He became the unsung hero of DC United's dominance in the US during the late 1990's.  He also played for NY Metrostars.  He was capped 20 times.

CM/RM: John Harkes  (USA)
At one point, he was considered the"Captain for life".  He had a great career in England when only a few Americans found successes overseas.  While playing for Derby, he scored the 1991 Goal of the Year in England. He was a part of the great DC United team in the mid-1990's.  He played college soccer with Virginia.
John Harkes

RM/CM: Ben Olsen (USA)
Olsen played for the University of Virginia, when he was named 1997 Soccer America Player of the Year.  He spent the vast majority of his professional career with D.C. United.  During that time he won two MLS Cup titles, two MLS Supporters' Shields and one U.S. Open Cup winners medal. His individual honors include two-time MLS All-Star, 1998 MLS Rookie of the Year, MLS Cup '99 MVP and 2007 MLS Best XI. He had a successful loan spell with Nottingham Forest, but a serious injury derailed his career in Europe.  Earned 37 caps.  He went to the WC Finals in 2006.

CM: Christian Gómez (Argentina)
Gomez played with Nueva Chicago, CA Independiente, and Arsenal de Sarandí in Argentina before heading to the United States.  In MLS, he has played for DC United, Colorado Rapids and Miami FC.  With DC United, he won the MLS Cup in 2004, made three MLS Best XI and won the MLS MVP award in 2006.

Christian Gomez

FW/RM/RB: Tony Sanneh (USA)

After finishing his college career, Sanneh played in various leagues around the United States before joining DC United in 1996.  At DC United, he played for many positions. He won two MLS Cups with them.  In 1999, he moved to Germany and played for Hertha Berlin.  He also played for Nurnberg and then, returned to MLS again in 2004. Capped 43 times.  He was a key player at the WC Finals in 2002.

AM: Marco Etcheverry (Bolivia)
El Diable was one of the best ever Bolivian player and one of the best players to have played in the MLS. He was an important player as Bolivia beat Brazil in 1993 and qualified for the WC Finals in 1994.  He was capped 71 times.  For his professionbal career, he played in Spain, Colombia and Chile before he moved to MLS in 1996 where he became a star.  He won 3 MLS Cups with DC United.
Marco Etcheverry
RW/FW: Santino Quaranta (USA)
Quaranta played mainly for DC United. At 16 years, four months, Quaranta surpassed fellow DC player Bobby Convey to become the youngest player in the history of Major League Soccer, a record which would subsequently be taken by another DC player, Freddy Adu. He also played for LA Galaxy and NYRed Bulls.  He earned 25 caps for the United States.

LW: Bobby Convey (USA)
Convey was drafted in 2000 in the first round by D.C. United of Major League Soccer. That year, he became the youngest player ever signed by a MLS club.  He became an important player for the team.  Convey also spent five years in England with Reading, whom he helped into the Premier League for the first time. He played in 46 international matches for the United States, and made their squads for the 2003 Gold Cup and 2006 World Cup.

FW: Chris Pontius (USA)
Ib MLS, Pontius played with DC United and Philadelphia Union.  In 2012, he made it the MLS All-Star game and was named the MVP.  Furthermore, he was selected as MLS Best XI.  He joined Philadelphia Union in 2015 and was named the Comeback Player of the Year.  He was only capped twice.

FW: Raul Diaz Arce (El Salvador)
He started with Dragon in the second division of El Salvador.  He then moved up to play for C.D. Luis Ángel Firpo, where he would go on to win the league's top scorer three season in a row (1993–1996).  In 1996, he joined DC United.  In his first season with United, he was second in the league behind Roy Lassiter, and still the fifth best single-season mark in MLS history. With them, he won two MLS Cups in 1996 and 1997. In 1998, he was traded to New England Revolution.  From 1999, he played for many MLS clubs.  Arce was capped 68 caps for El Salvador.
Raul Diaz Arce
FW: Dwayne De Rosario (Canada)
He played for the Toronto Lynx, FSV Zwickau and Richmond Kickers early in his career. He came to prominence in the 2000s playing in Major League Soccer for the San Jose Earthquakes, Houston Dynamo, Toronto FC, New York Red Bulls and D.C. United. A four-time MLS Cup champion, he also won the 2011 MLS Most Valuable Player award. He is the sixth-leading scorer in MLS history with 104 goals.  He was capped 81 times.  He was a part of the team that won the Gold Cup.

ST: Roy Lassiter (USA)
After starring for North Carolina State University, Lassiter moved to play in Costa Rica.  In the summer of 1995, Alajuelense sold him to Major League Soccer. In 1996, Lassiter won the top goalscorer award in Major League Soccer, scoring 27 goals for Tampa Bay Mutiny, after when he was loaned for 6 months to Italian Serie B side Genoa. Lassiter went to D.C. United in 1998, winning the MLS Cup in 1999. Lassiter also played with Miami Fusion and Kansas City Wizards. Capped 34 times. He was unlucky to miss out all the WC Finals during his career.

ST: Luciano Emílio (Brazil)
In 1997, Emílio signed with 1. FC Köln of the German Bundesliga. He played for the youth team and finally worked his way up to the senior team. In 1999, Emílio transferred to Alemannia Aachen. From 2001 onward. He played in Mexico, Honduras and Brazil, but the highlight of his career was spent in MLS. In 2007, he was the league's MVP, Golden Boot and named in the Best XI, while playing for DC United.

ST: Jaime Moreno (Bolivia)
He began his career at Club Blooming and then played for Colombia's Independiente Santa Fe before becoming the first Bolivian to play in the Premiership.  He spent two seasons at the English club Middlesbrough.  In 1996, he joined DC United.  He spent 15 seasons in MLS, becoming its all-time leading scorer.  From 1991 to 2008, Moreno played 75 matches for the Bolivia.
Jamie Moreno
Honorable Mention
Fabián Espíndola, Chris Rolfe, Perry Kitchen, Chris Pontius, Steve Birnbaum, Alecko Eskandarian, Brandon Prideaux, Carey Talley, Nick DeLeon, Marc Burch, Brian Carroll, Geoff Aunger, Dema Kovalenko, Chris Albright, Joshua Gros, Sean Franklin, Mario Gori. 

Squad Exoplanation
-- Nick Rimando and Bill Hamid were easy choices for the top two keepers.  Troy Perkins was named 2006 MLS Goalkeeper of the Year, Best XI, and voted to the 2006 All Star Team. 
-- On paper, I have three right backs on the roster. Tony Sanneh played mainly as a midfielder for DC United.
-- Bobby Boswell was MLS Defender of the Year in 2006.
-- Richie Williams was an unsung hero of the mid-1990's.  He was voted into DC United's Hall of Tradition.
-- I saw Ben Olsen when he was a Freshman at University of Virginia. I was impressed.
-- Eddie Pope, Jeff Agoos, Jaime Moreno and Marco Etcheverry voted the MLS All-Time Best XI.


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