WASHINGTON — It’s been 209 minutes since D.C. United found the back of the net in league play. That’s something the team hopes to amend Saturday night at San Jose (10:30 pm ET; watch LIVE online).
Since Dwayne De Rosario’s winning goal against the New York Red Bulls back on July 9, DC have gone scoreless in two straight games, a 0-0 draw against FC Dallas, and a disappointing 1-0 loss to New England (although they scored in a 3-1 friendly loss against Everton last weekend).
The chances have been there, especially against the Revolution. Charlie Davies missed a penalty kick, and a number of chances were created, only for United to lack that final touch in front of net.
“I don’t think a lot needs to change,” midfielder Chris Pontius told MLSsoccer.com. “You go through these spells where things aren’t going to go your way sometimes.”
One thing that won’t help the scoring problems vanish will be the absence of starting forward Josh Wolff, who didn’t make the trip after picking up a hamstring injury last weekend. Reserve forward Joseph Ngwenya also didn’t make the trip after being involved in a collision in practice this week.
Davies, who sat out the friendly against Everton and didn’t practice Tuesday or Wednesday did join the team. His knee has improved, allowing him to get through a training session on Thursday.
“Charlie’s been running around, looking better,” assistant coach Chad Ashton said. “We’ll have to see how his knee responds and make the decision whether to start him or bring him off the bench.”
Without Wolff, United coaches will have to decide who to play up top. Rookie Blake Brettschneider is available after recovering from a concussion, along with De Rosario and Pontius, who have played up top.
Pontius, who scored the lone goal against Everton, doesn’t know if he’ll be shifted up top, but would certainly be willing to consider it — especially with someone like De Rosario spraying the ball from midfield.
“We haven’t spoken about that yet,” Pontius said. “I’ve always said you’ve got to put the team before yourself. When you have a player like DeRo who picks his head up and is able to find players, it’s always good to play up top.”
Travis Clark covers D.C. United, College and Youth soccer for MLSsoccer.com. Follow him on Twitter: @travismclark.