Wednesday kickaround

(The Washington Post)
(The Washington Post)

Good mornin’ …

That is Maryland native Kyle Beckerman, World Cup bound for the first time at age 32, adorning the front page of The Post’s Sports print edition. The vowels, consonants and punctuation can be found here.

Both local pro clubs are in action at home tonight:

D.C. United vs. Houston Dynamo at RFK Stadium, 7 p.m. (Comcast SportsNet)

Washington Spirit vs. Sky Blue FC at Maryland SoccerPlex, 7 p.m. (NWSL’s YouTube page)

In case you missed it late last night, MLS suspended Eddie Johnson.

To preview the DCU match, I wrote about right back Chris Korb, who recovered in time from a knee injury to replace ailing Sean Franklin.

United learned the date of its first U.S. Open Cup match: June 17. In the round of 32, DCU will visit the third-division Rochester Rhinos or host fourth-tier Reading United at Maryland SoccerPlex. The Rochester-Reading match is next Wednesday.

Ben Olsen, on the physical demands of playing three games in eight days for the first time this year: “Science has progressed a lot. We’ve got a lot of information for diet. We’ve got a lot of machines, I don’t even know what they do, to let these guys recover.”

How fired up is United captain Bobby Boswell about playing his club of the previous six seasons? Meh. “For me, it’s a conference opponent. It’s a chance to move up in the standings. Obviously, come gametime, I’ll probably be a little different, but right now, it’s just another game to me.”

The Spirit (3-4-0) is playing the second of three consecutive home matches. On Saturday, Washington came from behind to defeat Western New York Flash, 3-2. Forward Jodie Taylor was named NWSL’s player of the week and invited to England’s training camp ahead of Women’s World Cup qualifiers. Washington waived midfielder-forward Colleen Williams, who suffered an ACL injury last season and had not played this year. Sky Blue, coached by former Freedom coach Jim Gabarra, is 1-3-3.

*Copa Centroamericana is coming to the United States this fall, the latest international tournament to choose our shores. In recent weeks, the 2016 Copa America and CONCACAF’s 2015 Women’s World Cup qualifying tournament this fall were awarded to America.

*With the field expanded to 24, the Women’s World Cup in Canada next summer is sure to feature several newcomers. Thailand clinched the fifth Asian berth by defeating Vietnam in a playoff. Australia, South Korea, China and Japan also secured berths. The other confederations have not completed qualifying. CONCACAF will stage its tournament at U.S. venues (to be determined) in October.

*PBS will show “American Pharaoh,” a documentary about Bob Bradley‘s extraordinary tenure as the Egyptian coach, on June 16 at 10 p.m. ET.

Steven Goff is The Post’s soccer writer. His beats include D.C. United, MLS and the international game, as well as local college basketball.
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Steven Goff · May 20

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