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March 8, 2014 7:00 PM EST
Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium — Washington, District of Columbia
Referee:‬ A. Pfefferkorn‎
Attendance:‬ 13840‎
J. Arrieta 18′
Federico Higuaín 27′ (PG)

MLS Preview: D.C. United - Columbus Crew

Two teams looking to bounce back from rough 2013 campaigns open the new season at RFK Stadium.

By Thomas Floyd

D.C. United
Rob Carr
After four long months, the fresh start D.C. United and the Columbus Crew have been waiting for is finally here.

With a 12-17-5 mark, the Crew in 2013 finished eight points out of a playoff spot. But that's a record United would have happily preferred over its dismal campaign, during which a leaky defense and the worst attack in MLS history resulted in a 3-24-7 record.

The Eastern Conference clubs will open their 2014 seasons at 7 p.m. Saturday at RFK Stadium.

READ MORE: Goal's full 2014 MLS preview

During the offseason, Columbus parted with veterans Chad Marshall, Danny O'Rourke and Andy Gruenebaum, as well as the retiring Eddie Gaven, while new coach Gregg Berhalter and Co. rebuilt the defense by bringing in U.S. national team defender Michael Parkhurst, Costa Rican defenders Waylon Francis and Giancarlo Gonzalez, and goalkeeper Steve Clark.

United also revamped its defensive corps, adding veterans Jeff Parke, Bobby Boswell, Sean Franklin and Cristian Fernandez. The changes didn't stop in the back, however, with USA striker Eddie Johnson bolstering an attack that also picked up streaky forward Fabian Espindola and versatile midfielder Davy Arnaud.

To make matters easier for United, it won't have to deal with speedy Columbus forward Dominic Oduro, who is suspended after receiving a red card in the Crew's 2013 season finale.

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Field Report
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Top 3 Predictions
Head to Head
Major League Soccer ‎(MLS)‎ 2014-03-08 D.C. United 0 - Columbus Crew 3
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Major League Soccer ‎(MLS)‎ 2013-04-27 Columbus Crew 3 - D.C. United 0
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Major League Soccer ‎(MLS)‎ 2013-03-23 D.C. United 1 - Columbus Crew 2
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Major League Soccer ‎(MLS)‎ 2012-10-20 D.C. United 3 - Columbus Crew 2
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Major League Soccer ‎(MLS)‎ 2012-08-04 D.C. United 1 - Columbus Crew 0
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Last Five Matches
Team News
Available Squads
28Bill HamidGoalkeeper
2Jeff ParkeDefender
5Sean FranklinDefender
32Bobby BoswellDefender
7Eddie JohnsonStriker
8Davy ArnaudMidfielder
12Alex CaskeyMidfielder
14Nick DeLeonMidfielder
23Perry KitchenMidfielder
12Luis SilvaMidfielder
9Fabian EspindolaStriker
50Andrew DykstraGoalkeeper
15Steven BirnbaumDefender
33Taylor KempDefender
24Lewis NealMidfielder
25Jared JeffreyMidfielder
30Conor DoyleStriker
19Kyle PorterStriker
-Steve ClarkeGoalkeeper
3Josh WilliamsDefender
4Michael ParkhurstDefender
5Giancarlo GonzálezDefender
14W. FrancisDefender
6Tony TchaniMidfielder
7Bernardo AnorMidfielder
12Hector JimenezMidfielder
20William TrappMidfielder
10Federico HiguaínStriker
19J. ArrietaStriker
28Matt LampsonGoalkeeper
2Tyson WahlDefender
21Chad BarsonDefender
13Ethan FinlayMidfielder
24A. VianaDefender
9Justin MeramMidfielder
29Adam BedellStriker
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Clint Dempsey Clint Dempsey
Seattle Sounders
6 1
E. Torres E. Torres
Chivas USA
5 2
V. Sánchez V. Sánchez
4 3
Federico Higuaín Federico Higuaín
Columbus Crew
4 2
Kenny Miller Kenny Miller
3 2