Inactive All-Star De Rosario keeping his focus on DC

Dwayne De Rosario

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WASHINGTON — For the sixth time in his lengthy MLS career, D.C. United midfielder Dwayne De Rosario was recognized as an MLS All-Star.

However, his status as an inactive All-Star — not on the game-day roster — means that he can remain focused on his new club and won’t make the midweek journey up north to face Manchester United.

The Canadian international saw the silver lining in not making the trip up to Red Bull Arena on Wednesday.

“Getting called to the All-Star team is always an honor and I appreciate it,” he said on Tuesday. “It has been a long year for me in terms of games, with the Gold Cup. It would be nice to play against [Manchester United], but we have another big game coming up against San Jose.”

Since joining DC back on June 27, De Rosario has started all four league matches, contributing a goal and an assist while the club has posted a record of 1-2-1. He’s enjoyed the transition onto his third club this season, including working for United coach Ben Olsen, a foe on the field for many years.

“I really like it,” De Rosario said. “I think Ben has done a great job of switching from a player to a coach. I know it takes some coaches years to make that adjustment, but he’s done a fantastic job. He’s had a successful career, and granted he’s done very well, but he’s put that aside and knows he’s still learning. The guys respond to him in a positive way and really respect him as a coach.”

Playing as an attacking midfielder in a diamond 4-4-2, De Rosario has been a dangerous presence in his four matches, getting his first goal for DC in a 1-0 win against his former club New York Red Bulls.

This weekend, with United traveling to San Jose, De Rosario will face former coach and fellow Canadian Frank Yallop, who manages the Earthquakes. Yallop was an instrumental force in bringing De Rosario to the original San Jose side back in 2001.

While there is a high level of admiration from De Rosario for his former coach, he’ll put that aside and aim for the win with DC.

“[He’s] a gentlemen that I have a lot of respect for and always will,” De Rosario said. “I’m just going out there looking at a team we need to get three points from and that’s it.”

Travis Clark covers D.C. United, College and Youth soccer for MLSsoccer.com. Follow him on Twitter: @travismclark.