MLS suspends D.C. United’s Eddie Johnson for 2 matches

(D.C. United photo)
(D.C. United photo)

D.C. United forward Eddie Johnson will serve a two-game suspension for kicking the ball at a fallen opponent after the whistle Saturday.

In a terse statement announced by the league Wednesday, the MLS disciplinary committee concluded Johnson had used “violent conduct” toward Real Salt Lake defender Carlos Salcedo in the 30th minute of United’s 3-0 loss in Sandy, Utah. Johnson was also fined an undisclosed amount.

After fouling Salcedo, Johnson smashed the ball off Salcedo’s backside from close distance. He escaped with only a yellow card. [Video here]

United officials declined to comment. On Tuesday, however, Coach Ben Olsen said he anticipated a suspension and Johnson braced himself for a ban.

Johnson opted not to appeal the penalty, the club said. He will miss Sunday’s home match against the Colorado Rapids and the Aug. 23 game at first-place Sporting Kansas City. Johnson is available for next Wednesday’s CONCACAF Champions League opener against Jamaican club Waterhouse at RFK Stadium. (The suspension applies to MLS games only.)

United’s marquee offseason signing has scored four goals in 19 appearances.

After the game in Utah, Johnson got himself into hot water on Twitter by engaging D.C. fans critical of his actions involving Salcedo.

With Johnson out, United will rely heavily on top scorer Fabian Espindola, who last weekend returned from a two-month injury absence, and Luis Silva, Espindola’s replacement. Reserve forwards Conor Doyle (knee) and Michael Seaton (quadriceps) are not available. Midfielder Chris Rolfe and newly acquired midfielder-forward David Estrada are also options on the frontline.

 

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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