The Washington Post

D.C. United at Los Angeles Galaxy

Greetings from Home Depot Center for D.C. United’s first away test of the MLS season, an encounter against the reigning champion Los Angeles Galaxy.

The storm that dropped heavy rain on the coastal region and snow in the nearby mountains has passed through, leaving behind bright sunshine but unseasonably cool temperatures (mid-50s) and powerful gusts (20-30 mph).

I am expecting several changes to the DCU lineup, some out of necessity and, after last week’s dour opener, additional moves to liven things up. As you know from reading my preview, Bill Hamid and Perry Kitchen are away on U.S. under-23 duty to prepare for Olympic qualifying, so Joe Willis and Marcelo Saragosa will start.

In a pregame ceremony, the Galaxy players will receive their championship rings for winning the 2011 MLS Cup. The club will seek to draw inspiration from the salute after a stumbling start to this campaign: an away draw and home loss to Toronto FC in the CONCACAF Champions League and a home loss to Real Salt Lake in the league opener. Today marks the Galaxy’s fourth match in 12 days, a punishing stretch so early in the year. David Beckham and Landon Donovan have played a lot of minutes.

Continuing our road trip restaurant feature (here are my Charleston recommendations from training camp), today we give a shout-out to Steamed in Long Beach. Even if you are carnivore, you’ll enjoy the quesadillas, burritos, salads and desserts at this tiny place a few blocks from the waterfront.

Kickoff: 7 p.m. ET.

TV: Galavision. (MLS Live on your mobile device.)

DCU: Willis; Russell, Jakovic, McDonald, Korb; Najar, Saragosa, King, Pontius; De Rosario, Maicon Santos. Subs: Dykstra, Dudar, Boskovic, Rozeboom, Cruz, De Leon, Salihi.

LAG: Saunders; Dunivant, Franklin, DeLaGarza, Boyens; Donovan, Magee, Juninho, Beckham; Keane, Barrett. Subs: Perk, Buddle, Cardozo, Keat, Meyer, Noonan, Sarvas.

As usual, this is the place for pregame, in-game and postgame banter.

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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