Steve Guppy has become the forgotten player on D.C. United's roster.

"It's been seven long weeks," he said before United's game against New England last night at RFK Stadium.

Guppy, a 36-year-old midfielder from England, started the first four regular season matches as well as two Champions Cup games but hasn't played since late April because of Achilles' tendinitis in both legs. He said he can't pinpoint a return date, but hopes to be ready in a few weeks.

"I'm getting there," he said. "It's been incredibly frustrating, but I think the worst of it has passed. Hopefully, as long as the [Achilles' tendons] let me, I can start looking forward to helping the team again."

Guppy, a longtime English league player, was brought to Washington for one specific purpose: to serve crosses from the left flank. In his first appearance, he set up Jamil Walker's goal during a 2-1 victory over Harbour View in Jamaica in March and later contributed assists against Pumas of Mexico and New England.

Since then, however, he has been limited to work in the weight room and light jogging at the team's training grounds.

"I miss it a great deal," he said. "The team is spurring me on, so hopefully it won't be long now."

Extended Break

Following last night's game, United won't play again until June 29 at Chicago -- its longest break until late September and early October, when the club has a two-week rest.

Coach Peter Nowak plans to give the players the next four days off before regrouping late in the week. Nowak and technical director Dave Kasper will use the time off to scout players in Argentina. . . .

United defender Bryan Namoff remains sidelined with a hip flexor strain. Revolution forward Taylor Twellman (University of Maryland) is out with a strained hamstring.