COLUMBUS, Ohio — After earning a red card in the Columbus Crew's 2013 season finale against the New England Revolution, winger Dominic Oduro is suspended for the club's opener at D.C. United Saturday (7 pm ET, MLS LIVE). And while he says he's “over it,” he's still frustrated at letting his anger get the best of him.
“I'm sort of disappointed in myself, but it was out of frustration what I did in the last game,” he said at the team's jersey revealing Tuesday. “I'm over it right now. I still know the guys will go out there and do the job really well.”
The club's leading scorer in 2013 earned the suspension after kicking out at New England's Kelyn Rowe behind the play in the final moments of the match.
Oduro's coach Gregg Berhalter says he knows what it's like to not be able to take the field for an opener: He was suspended for the first match of the second half of a season in Germany.
“I've been in his situation before, I've been suspended for the first game of the season,” he said. “As a coach, we have to prepare with the team that can play on the weekend. So even though he's part of the plans, we can't prepare with him, and it's frustrating.”
“We're competitors out there,” he said. “I think the coach is doing a great job putting the guys on the field. It's just my job to go out there and try to make his job difficult for him... You know I'm feisty, you know I can do my job, and it will just be for the coach [to decide].”
But Berhalter says that both men know what Oduro means to the club.
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“Dom has a big part to play with this team, and he knows that,” Berhalter said.
Oduro says he'll be watching the opening match with Crew supporters, but that his mind will be on his own opener March 22 in Columbus.
“I can't wait, that's what I've been dreaming of,” he said. “It's a downside that I can't play in the D.C. game, but I'm just focusing all my energy on the opening game on the 22nd. I can't do anything but just wait for that day.”