*D.C. United Coach Ben Olsen doesn’t reveal his lineup in advance, but from what I gather, Perry Kitchen will return to the starting backline Thursday night against the New York Red Bulls at RFK Stadium (8 p.m. ET, ESPN2).

Kitchen was a second-half substitute in Toronto on Saturday after missing several matches because of U.S. duty and illness. Kitchen and right back Chris Korb, teammates with NCAA champion Akron last year, would start together for the first time as pros.

Dejan Jakovic is Kitchen’s likely partner in the middle and Ethan White, who has filled in admirably for Kitchen, will probably return to a back-up role.

*As of this morning, about 13,000 tickets had been sold — a good count for a mid-week match.

*The weather outlook for RFK at gametime: 58 degrees and clear.

*Olsen, on playing New York: “The addition of DeRo [Dwayne De Rosario] really puts them as one of the most talented teams in this league, and they’ve shown that so far. It’s a great test for us.”

*Olsen’s fondest memories of the DCU-New York rivalry?

“People keep reminding me I scored three goals once against them [in 2007], so that was a very unexpected good day for me. I never thought that would happen. Certainly we had some good playoff series with them. ... There was one up there [in 2004] ... Earnie Stewart scored, right? He was offisde by about 20 yards.”

Looking ahead to Thursday, is there another creative goal celebration in the works? Read on.....

*In the previous home match, Charlie Davies celebrated a goal by hopping onto the VW display behind the net and trying to enter the car. What does he — and the team — have in store in case of a goal(s) against the Red Bulls?

“We’ve got something on the plate,” he said, flashing a sly smile. “I’ll just give you a little hint: It will be a throwback — an MLS throwback.”

Hmmm, someone is going to pop open a can of Red Bull, like Alecko Eskandarian did at Giants Stadium a few years back?

“No, not that!” Davies said. “We’re talking a little further back, I’m talking throwback, early years.”