Five matches, five defeats. Two goals scored, 13 goals against.
Those are the grisly statistics. The result is that D.C. United are still pointless heading into Wednesday night’s game at RFK Stadium.
So even though United appear on the verge of complete collapse, Kansas City may well be facing their toughest road test of the season. Seattle was loud, Houston was as organized as ever but D.C. will be downright desperate to eliminate the zero next to their name.
“They are going to do whatever they can, and they are going to fight in every way they can to get that result,” Vermes said.
In a roundabout way, the Wizards are pointless, too. Away from home, that is.
A late lapse in Seattle and Davy Arnuad’s red card against Houston – the Wizards’ captain is suspended for Wednesday’s match – have kept Kansas City from adding to the seven home points they have collected at CommunityAmerica Ballpark.
Complicating matters even more is the fact that the Wizards played only four days ago in Houston, and defender Jimmy Conrad is also unlikely to start. Kansas City will have to prove they've learned enough from their mistakes away from home to leave RFK with a result and, hopefully, three points.
“Any good team in any league around the world has to be able to play away from home and get points,” Vermes said. “We are no different than any other team in any other league.”
Depending on whom you ask, the Wizards’ 4-0 demolition of United at CAB on opening day could be a good thing or a bad thing. Good in the fact that Kansas City get to take on an opponent that couldn’t handle their pressure the first time around. Bad in the fact that D.C. will be familiar with what type of game Kansas City will play.
For his part, Vermes isn’t too concerned about what happened between the two squads on March 27. It has been more than a month since that game, and – good or bad – much has changed since then for both teams.
With United desperate to stop the losing – Troy Perkins struggles may afford an opportunity to 18-year-old Bill Hamid – and Kansas City leveling out after a quick start, both teams will have plenty to prove the second time around.
“It’s a different team that we are playing,” Vermes said. “We’re different. The situations are different. It’s all different.”
Conrad's status still up in the air
Veteran defender Conrad is listed as probable at RFK Stadium, but still seems most likely to be an option off the bench.
Vermes has stressed that no player will be rushed back from injury to prevent long-term damage and further complications. Conrad was subject to a fitness test Tuesday, but he hasn’t played or trained heavily since straining his calf two-and-a-half weeks ago.
Conrad trained this week leading up to the match, but 90 minutes would be quite a bit to ask at this point in the season, especially considering Pablo Escobar and Matt Besler have performed well in his stead.