- The Washington Times - Saturday, June 8, 2002

D.C. United's colorful coach, Ray Hudson, is practically guaranteeing victory tonight against the New England Revolution at RFK Stadium.
"Collectively, we're better, we've got better individuals, and I'm not too worried about the New England Revolution," Hudson said. "This is a game [where] we can take them if we focus in on ourselves."
Hudson has plenty of reasons to be confident. United (3-5-1) has not played a match in three weeks, and during that layoff key players like forward Jaime Moreno have had time to increase their fitness. Also, United has enjoyed sharp, spirited training sessions the past two weeks.
United's last outing a convincing 4-2 victory May 18 over the New York/New Jersey MetroStars was its best performance of the season. Most importantly, a United victory would vault the team into sole possession of second place in Major League Soccer's jumbled Eastern Conference and firmly into playoff contention.
"[The Revolution] have good players all over the field, but I don't think they stack up to the likes of Moreno and [Marco] Etcheverry," Hudson said. "I just think we are just better man for man, but we've got to show it. This is a game I'm looking to win."
The game will be a reunion of sorts for Hudson. The Revolution (3-5-1) have seven players who Hudson coached last season with the defunct Miami Fusion. Hudson and assistant John Trask have intimate knowledge of the Revolution's best players, especially strikers Alex Pineda Chacon and Diego Serna, who were No.1 and No.2 in MLS in goals last season.
One player Hudson didn't coach was Revolution striker and former Maryland standout Taylor Twellman. Twellman, who jumped to MLS this season from Germany after leading the 1860 Munich reserve team in scoring last season, has erupted onto the MLS scene with seven goals half of the Revolution's total and is tied for third in the league with Jason Kreis of the Dallas Burn.
Despite Twellman's impressive numbers, Hudson doesn't have much respect for the 20-year-old striker and second overall pick in February's SuperDraft.
"He's a poacher, and you've got to cut his source off," Hudson said. "I'm not too worried about him, to be honest. I don't see him as a special player at all."
Hudson also knows the Revolution are in disarray. The club fired coach Fernando Clavijo on May 23 after a 5-2 loss to the Colorado Rapids and named Steve Nicol interim coach.
One day after hiring Nicol, the Revolution made a six-player trade in which they shipped disgruntled striker Mamadou Diallo, midfielder Andy Williams and defender Ted Chronopoulos to the MetroStars for Serna, defender Daniel Hernandez and utility man Brian Kamler.
"We know we've got the brilliance and the footballers, and we know we've got that fizz and that X-factor all over the field," Hudson said. "The money players are really starting to produce now. When the lights go on [tonight], we've got to take care of business. We need to win this one. We're ready, we're primed and we're following on a great performance against New York. So, let's keep this snowball rolling."


Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times welcomes your comments on Spot.im, our third-party provider. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.

 

Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide