WASHINGTON – Little more than midway through the season, struggling D.C. United did a bit of retooling.
Roughly three months later, while the results on the field haven’t really improved – save for United’s memorable US Open Cup win earlier this month – the chemistry between D.C.’s midseason acquisitions has.
“Time flies, you know?” Silva said following a rainy Friday morning training session ahead of United’s match against Philadelphia on Saturday (7 pm ET; MLS Live). “It feels like a week or two weeks ago. Now it feels good to be settled in. I know the guys pretty well now, especially Jared and Conor. We get to hang out more, and we’re just trying to play football.”
Silva has done plenty of that with Ben Olsen’s club, having started 10 matches and scored three goals while assisting another, thus quickly endearing himself to D.C.’s fan base. Jeffrey missed time with an ankle injury, but has started seven matches and scored twice, while Doyle has played in 11 matches (five starts) and has two goals and an assist.
“It’s crazy to think how far back July is. It’s pretty much flown by,” Doyle said. “The fact that [the three of us] came in around the same time kind of jelled us together. I thought the combination between us three was pretty good and being pretty good friends on and off the field. That chemistry helps, us three being good attacking players, I thought it’s worked pretty well.”
In a 3-0 loss last Friday against Chicago, the group created frequent scoring opportunities and helped United greatly outpossess the Fire.
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“I think they’re all good young players that will have fit in,” Olsen said. “What role they are in the future, that’s something we’ve got to decide over the next couple games and into next year.”
Ultimately, though, as D.C. enter the match against the Union on a nine-game winless streak in league play, they are attempting to avoid becoming the worst team in MLS history. Favorable results are as much as point of emphasis as ever.
“We need a win,” Olsen said. “It’s as simple as that.”