DC United Paints a Sad Picture for the Future of Soccer in America

Reid DavenportCorrespondent IJune 7, 2010

WASHINGTON - JUNE 5:  D.C. United fans hold a banner for Bryan Namoff during game against Real Salt Lake during a MLS soccer match on June 5, 2010 at RFK Stadium in Washington D.C.  (Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images)
Mitchell Layton/Getty Images

There's no shortage of spirit for the team, just a shortage of people who have it.

While sitting in the partially filled front section during the game, it's hard to believe that it was RFK Stadium that saw Joe Gibbs lead the Redskins to four NFC Championships and three Super Bowl wins.

Since 1996, RFK Stadium has hosted the MLS club, DC United.  Championed for its great players and previous success, currently the seats of RFK seem all the more empty.

This was no different Saturday, as United match ended with a 0-0 tie to Real Salt Lake, making their record 2-8-1, the Eastern Conference's worst.

It's even more discouraging that after 15 seasons, DC United are in the process of planning a move to Maryland.  

So, what are the empty seats really saying?

Are they saying that the United States will never accept soccer as a viable major sport? Do they illustrate how Washingtonians are dismayed at the fact that their once prestigious soccer team has fallen by the wayside?  Or are they just simply frustrated that owner Victor MacFarlane decided that DC wasn't worth his time anymore?

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It's hard to understand what these seats are saying, but there's no doubt they wreak of beer.

So, as the 45,000 seat stadium contrasts the dismal crowd, it's down right depressing to know these die-hard, chant-screaming, face-painting fans in attendance will soon see an end to a very successful MLS Club.  

Or is it sadder to realize that you probably have never heard of this team before, even though it has been one of the premiere teams of the MLS?

World Cup fever or not, I think those empty seats are really screaming that United States will never invite soccer to come out and play.