Waterhouse FC vs. D.C. United
2014-15 CONCACAF Champions League
September 16 | 8 pm ET | National Stadium
TV: Fox Soccer Plus, UDN
D.C. United will attempt to take control of Group 4 in their second and final meeting of the 2014-15 CCL against Waterhouse FC. The Jamaican club currently sit in first place after two wins over the third team in the group, Panama's Tauro, but D.C. have games in hand on their group opponents and will look to make good with their second match of the group stage. After dispatching of Waterhouse 1-0 in the home leg at RFK Stadium on Aug. 20, can D.C. make it a clean sweep?
WHICH LINEUP WILL OLSEN CHOOSE? In the Aug. 20 game against Waterhouse, D.C. United coach opted for a reserve-heavy lineup, with Eddie Johnson the lone starter to get the call. The strategy worked, as Johnson grabbed an early goal, and the team gained experience and a shutout with the win. For the return match, will Fabian Espindola play? The MVP candidate is suspended for United's next league game, Saturday against Chicago at Toyota Park, so he could get a run out against Waterhouse. Besides the possibility of Espindola, expect another lineup dominated by squad players.
DECIDING GAME FOR WATERHOUSE: This is the group stage finale for the Jamaican side. If they can grab a win over D.C. at home, they will have at least a chance of winning the group and advancing to the knockout stage, despite being considered by many before the start of the competition as the group's weakest team. But if they fail to win, a lot would have to go their way in the upcoming games between D.C. and Tauro to give them any hope of advancing. They've already beaten the Panamanians twice — can they grab a third memorable win, this time over an MLS side, to keep their CCL dream alive?
TRAP GAME FOR UNITED? A game on the road in the Caribbean, during a month in which they have six games across two competitions, and while jockeying for position in the Eastern Conference playoff race and perhaps even the Supporters' Shield race. Could this game get overlooked in a busy September? Absolutely, especially with what looks like a largely inexperienced side set to start for D.C. A loss in this game wouldn't necessarily doom their chances to advance to the CCL knockout stage, but it certainly wouldn't help. They haven't won in their first two games this month — is an upset brewing for United?
PLAYERS TO WATCH:
DAVID ESTRADA: A strong possibility to get the start vs. Waterhouse, Estrada is a support striker who has shown an ability to get on scoring streaks in various competitions in the past with the Seattle Sounders. If Espindola plays in this game, don't be surprised if Estrada is the beneficiary of the Argentine's playmaking ability and manages to grab a goal, maybe more.
JERMAINE ANDERSON: The veteran striker is back with Waterhouse and led his domestic league in scoring two seasons running before going to El Salvador's Aguila for a short stop earlier this year. He scored a brace in Waterhouse's second win over Tauro in the group stage, and will be depended on to bury a chance in this second meeting against D.C., if he gets a good one.