D.C. United will begin the 2012 MLS campaign March 10, the earliest start in the club’s 17-season history. The opener will be played at home against an opponent to be determined. United has played international tournament matches at earlier dates but the regular season slate has never begun before March 15 (1998 at Miami Fusion).

Interestingly, in the news release announcing its opener, United makes no mention of RFK Stadium — “at home” is the only reference to the venue.

[UPDATE] “D.C. United is in negotiations with Events DC [which operates RFK] for a new short-term lease at RFK Stadium, with hopes to have discussions resolved soon,” United spokesman Doug Hicks said. “However, RFK is not a long-term solution.”


Five other clubs will open at home March 10, and one apiece on March 11 and 12. (All of the home-opening dates are listed here.) The complete schedule is expected in late December or January.

The Houston Dynamo won’t play at home until May 12 as it awaits completion of its new downtown stadium. The expansion Montreal Impact will play at Olympic Stadium until renovations are completed at the adjacent Saputo Stadium in June.