Soccer

Ben Olsen tabbed for D.C. United Hall of Tradition

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Ben Olsen tabbed for D.C. United Hall of Tradition

CSNWashington.com

Today, D.C. United announced that Ben Olsen has been voted into the D.C. United Hall of Tradition, presented by GEICO. The iconic midfielder earnedUniteds most prestigious honor by collecting 81 of the fan vote on dcunited.com. Olsen will be inducted in a ceremony on September 15 when United faces the New England Revolution at 7:30 PM.

I am honored that the D.C. United faithful have put me in the Hall of Tradition, said Olsen. The support Ive received from our fans during my time here has been overwhelming and I can only hope to repay them with success on the field with our current team. This organization has given me a great deal in my life and to be in its Hall of Tradition alongside players that have mentored me throughout my career is something I will always cherish.

D.C. United President and CEO Kevin Payne said, Its appropriate that Ben Olsen is joining his former teammates in the Hall of Tradition, and added that His service to our club has always been exemplary, and hes now writing a new chapter in our clubs history as our coach. He remains the heart and soul of our team.

A skilled and fiery midfielder, Olsen is one of the most popular players to ever don the Black-and-Red. Olsen joined D.C. United in 1998 as a highly regarded prospect out of the University of Virginia, and during his stellar 11-year playing career he boasted an unwavering commitment to the club. Olsen had a large role in winning two MLS Cup titles (1999 and 2004), three Supporters Shields (1999, 2006 and 2007), 1998 Champions Cup and InterAmerican Cup victories, and a U.S. Open Cup championship (2008). Individually, he was the 1998 MLS Rookie of the Year, was honored as an All-Star five times (1998, 1999, 2001, 2004 and 2006), was a member of the 2007 MLS Best XI, was the 2003 USSF MLS Humanitarian of the Year,and was the 1999 MLS Cup MVP. Olsen retired on November 24, 2009, ranking second in for the club in all-time MLS games played and started (221 and 200, respectively), second in minutes played (17, 098), third in assists (49), and seventh in goals (29).

In addition to currently coaching D.C. United, Ben Olsen will also be coaching the MLS All-Stars as they face off against Chelsea FC at 8:30 PM on July 25th.

Game Preview: Washington Spirit vs. Portland Thorns at Audi Field

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USA Today Sports Images

Game Preview: Washington Spirit vs. Portland Thorns at Audi Field

The Washington Spirit, one of nine teams in the National Women's Soccer League, will pay a visit to Audi Field later this summer.

The game versus the Portland Thorns FC is scheduled for August 25 at 8 pm. Tickets can be purchased online via Ticketmaster and start at $31, but will also be available at the door. 

If you're looking for where to watch the Spirit take on the Thorns from the comfort of your own couch, the game will be broadcast on ESPNews starting at 7:38 pm. Dalen Cuff is set to host the pregame show, with USA Women's National Team alumnus Aly Wagner commentating alongside Jenn Hildreth, in her second season of NWSL coverage.

Considering the recent addition of the legendary Wayne Rooney and their move to the new facility, DC United has a lot to celebrate.

Audi Field, which opened in Washington D.C.'s Buzzard Point on July 9, seats 20,000 spectators. For DC United, who previously played at RFK Stadium, the capacity is a step down from the almost 46,000 seats at RFK. But for the Spirit, who call Germantown's Maryland Soccerplex their home, the audience will hopefully far outnumber the Plex's usual 3,000 to 4,000 spectators.

The Spirit have struggled this season, with an unusually high amound of draws and more losses than wins. Though fan favorite and star forward Mallory Pugh is still sidelined with a PCL sprain, the team hopes to improve their ability to close one-goal deficits and gain a sustained offensive advantage. 

Aside from the Audi Field game, the Spirit will host two more home games this season. Utah Royals FC will visit the Soccerplex on Wednesday, August 22, and Sky Blue FC will close out the Spirit's home season on Saturday, September 1. Tickets for either game at their usual field can be purchased through the Washington Spirit's website or upon entry. 

If you haven't paid attention to women's soccer since the USWNT's 2015 World Cup victory, no worries. There's no better time than the present to support women's pro sports. Regardless of the end result, Portland vs. Washington will be a great match-up to watch, and the event has already made DC sports history.

MORE DC SPORTS NEWS:

Wayne Rooney stuns D.C. soccer fans with surprise appearance during World Cup viewing

Wayne Rooney stuns D.C. soccer fans with surprise appearance during World Cup viewing

Washington Dulles International Airport was flooded by soccer fans alike Thursday afternoon awaiting the arrival of one specific person inside the international arrivals terminal: England's all-time goalscorer Wayne Rooney. 

Over 100 fans packed the halls as the 32-year-old made his way out of the airport while posing for pictures and signing autographs. 

Rooney penned a two-and-a-half year guaranteed contract worth about $13 million, which makes him the highest-paid player in D.C. United history. 

He officially becomes available to play for the club beginning July 10, after the transfer window opens. This means his first game could potentially be against Vancouver inside the brand new Audi Field July 10. 

After greeting fans at the airport, Rooney and his camp piled into two blacks SUVs en route to Northeast D.C. 

Little did World Cup fans taking in the England-Belgium match at Wunder Garten know that they were about to be surprised by Wayne Rooney himself. 

In an appearance that lasted just over seven minutes and included a slew of selfies, short conversations and one television interview, Rooney's presence dazzled fans and left others stunned. 

One England native who is now a D.C. resident told me: "We grew up watching him (Rooney) score in the World Cup and that was really important to us. It's hard to believe he just walked through here."

As you would imagine, management at Wunder Garten was thrilled, too.  

"It was great for us because it put us on the map. For someone as famous as Wayne Rooney to come through our establishment, shake hands and hang out, that means a lot. We loved having him here and would love to have him back," said Michael Keller, a member of the bar's management staff. 

 The Englishman will have his hands full as he attempts to put D.C. United back on the map this season. 

Follow Rooney on Twitter and Instagram @WayneRooney.