WASHINGTON, July 16, 2013 — D.C. United coach Ben Olsen has chosen two of his United players - Dwayne De Rosario and Chris Pontius - as part of his MLS All-Star team that will play UEFA Champions League winners Chelsea FC in the 2012 MLS All-Star Game on July 25 at PPL Park in Chester, Pa., at 8:30 p.m. (ESPN2).
De Rosario and Pontius, who have helped revive United’s form this season, will join likes of LA Galaxy stars David Beckham and Landon Donovan and New York Red Bulls standout Thierry Henry as the 18 MLS All-Stars confirmed on the gameday roster. Olsen was asked to coach the team last month after Peter Nowak was fired by the All-Star game-host team, the Philadelphia Union.
Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber selected the only active MLS original — defender Ramiro Corrales of the San Jose Earthquakes — and Philadelphia Union defender Carlos Valdés as his choices for the team.
Olsen selected all eleven of the original fan-voted All-Stars.
In addition to 12-time All-Star Donovan, the roster also features prominent All-Star veterans such as Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), and Eddie Johnson (Seattle Sounders FC). Nine roster selections are MLS All-Stars for the first time.
This is the ninth time in the All-Star event’s 17-year history that the All-Stars will play an international team. The MLS All-Stars have a 5-2-1 record in this format. The All-Stars have played teams such as Manchester United (2010 & 2011), Everton FC (2009), Chelsea FC (2006), Fulham FC (2005), and Chivas de Guadalajara (2003).
The All-Star Game will be part of Chelsea’s North American tour, which includes a game against the Seattle Sounders FC on July 18 and matches against Paris Saint-Germain and AC Milan. Chelsea beat Bayern Munich 4-3 on penalties after drawing 1-1 in regulation in May to win the Champions League title.
Check out the full roster below:
2012 MLS All-Star Gameday Roster
Goalkeeper: Dan Kennedy (Chivas USA), Jimmy Nielsen (Sporting Kansas City)
Defenders: Steven Beitashour (San Jose Earthquakes), Aurélien Collin (Sporting Kansas City), Ramiro Corrales (San Jose Earthquakes), Jay DeMerit (Vancouver Whitecaps FC), Heath Pearce (New York Red Bulls), Carlos Valdes (Philadelphia Union)
Midfielders: Osvaldo Alonso (Seattle Sounders FC), David Beckham (LA Galaxy), Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Dwayne De Rosario (D.C. United), Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
Forwards: Thierry Henry (New York Red Bulls), Eddie Johnson (Seattle Sounders FC), Chris Pontius (D.C. United), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)
For over 20 years John Haydon wrote a weekly soccer column for The Washington Times. He has covered two World Cups and written about Major League Soccer from the league’s inception in 1996. Follow John on Twitter at @Johnahaydon
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