MLS: D.C. cancels trip to Costa Rica

The decision to condense the remainder of this year's Costa Rican league season to allow for preparations for the World Cup playoff between the Ticos and Guatemala has forced D.C. United to cancel its two-week trip to Costa Rica. The trip was intended to prepare United for the CONCACAF Champions Cup in January. This closed the windows of scheduling opportunity for the Costa Rican teams to play in exhibition matches with United. Faced with the prospect of only being able to play a couple of matches at most rather than four exhibitions as originally planned, United head coach Thomas Rongen pulled the plug on the trip. Training: United will train Dec. 4-21 on weekdays at 11:00 a.m., likely at RFK Stadium. After taking a break from Dec. 22 - 27, United will reconvene from Dec. 28-31. The team will be off Jan. 1, train Jan. 2 in D.C. and travel to Los Angeles Jan. 3. While in the Los Angeles area, United will stay in Fullerton and train at Cal. State Fullerton in preparation for the Champions Cup. United is expected to play several exhibition matches in the Los Anegles area, possibly against the United States men's national team as well as the U.S. U-20 squad, prior to appearing in the Cup. Injury Update: Defender/midfielder Geoff Aunger is recovering from a broken ankle suffered in September in an exhibition match against Hampton Roads. Aunger resumed running two weeks ago and is aiming to return to the training pitch in early January... Defender Eddie Pope is recovering from a pair of injuries. Pope developed a bulging disk in his back last summer, as well as a bone bruise inside of his left knee. Both injuries are healing, and Pope is expected to resume running at the end of this week... Defender Carey Talley is wearing a "walking boot" while recovering from a non-healing bone bruise afflicting the navicular bone in his right foot. Talley will be evaluated late this week to determine his course of rehabilitation. Talley began having problems with his foot in August.
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