Greetings from Columbus, home of the original soccer-specific MLS stadium. Sunny and warm for the first of three meetings between the Crew and D.C. United. They’ll tangle again in two weeks at RFK.

United hasn’t won here since August 2007 and is 1-4-1 in the past six visits.

In the Eastern Conference race, United (33 points) lost ground this afternoon when the New York Red Bulls (38) defeated the visiting Philadelphia Union, 2-0, on a pair of Kenny Cooper goals. Sporting Kansas City (36) and the Houston Dynamo (31) are home tonight against New England and Montreal, respectively.

Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. ET.

TV: Comcast SportsNet (Mid-Atlantic), Fox Sports Ohio, Direct Kick, MLS Live.

DCU: Willis; Korb, Jakovic, McDonald, Woolard; DeLeon, Kitchen, Neal, Pontius; De Rosario, Salihi. Subs: Dykstra, Dudar, Cruz, Tan, Saragosa, Santos, Wolff. Injured: Russell (foot), Boskovic (calf).

CREW: Gruenebaum; Miranda, Marshall, Williams, Mendes; Gaven, Birchall, Grossman; Duka; Meram, Arrieta. Subs: Lampson, Gehrig, James, Nemanja, Tchani, Finlay, Vargas.

Your pregame, in-game and postgame observations are welcome in our comments section.