*D.C. United feared Danny Cruz fractured his ankle last Wednesday against the Charleston Battery. To everyone’s relief, X-ray results the same night came back negative. And less than a week later, with the MLS opener against Sporting Kansas City fast approaching, the 22-year-old right wing was charging around the training grounds without a hint of discomfort.
There’s still some swelling, Cruz said, but “nothing that can’t be worked on with ice. I feel fine.”
He expects to be available Saturday at RFK Stadium.
“We left there thinking for sure it was broken, all of the doctors there were saying it was broken,” Coach Ben Olsen said. “He’s a pretty durable kid. He’s had like six injuries already. He plays so hard, he plays every play like it’s his last, so he gets banged up a little bit.”
Kind of remind you of a certain rambunctious midfielder from yesteryear?
“I hope so,” Olsen said. “That’s a compliment to me, if that’s who you are referring to.”
“I will play through pain, absolutely,” Cruz said. “This is my job. I don’t like to sit on the sideline and watch.”
*Dwayne De Rosario missed training to be with his wife, Brandy, who was scheduled to give birth to their fourth child. Meantime, DeRo is looming large at RFK Stadium.
*Left back Jose Burciaga Jr., 30, who has been attempting to revive his career after three years out of MLS, was released.
“He is a little rusty just because he’s been out a while, but he has got a lot of qualities,” Olsen said. “He is a real good influence on our young guys. … He might get back [to the league]; he just needs some games to get that sharpness back.”
United plans to fill one or two roster slots this week.
Rookie midfielder Lance Rozeboom appears set to join the team, while defender-midfielder-forward Ryan Richter remains on trial. Lewis Neal, a 30-year-old English midfielder who was with the third-tier USL club Orlando City last season, has arrived for workouts. He began his career with Stoke City and played for Preston North End, Notts County, Carlisle and Shrewsbury Town.
Neal, a left-sided player with central attacking capability, was on trial with Real Salt Lake and played against United in Arizona last month.
*United alumni update: Forward Blake Brettschneider signed with the New England Revolution and midfielder-defender Brandon Barklage has joined the New York Red Bulls.
*Weather outlook Saturday night at RFK: 0 percent chance of rain, temperature in the 40s.
*Midfielder Stephen King celebrates his 26th birthday today.