Friday, June 27, 2008

"If I ever saw myself saying I’m excited going to Columbus, I’d punch myself in the face, because I’m lying.”

Paraphrasing the always quotable Ichiro (He originally said it about Cleveland, Columbus is close enough) I don't think the Rapids are looking forward to this trip to Cow-town to play the Village People. The game is at 5:30 MDT, and as always the fans will be gathering at the British Bulldog to watch the game.

Here's the injury report:

OUT: Justin Hughes (L groin); DOUBTFUL: MF Jacob Peterson (L knee); QUESTIONABLE: MF Christian Gomez (R leg), DF Rafael Gomes (R knee); PROBABLE: DF Mike Petke (R foot), MF Nico Colaluca (L groin), DF Jose Burciaga Jr. (L groin), MF Pablo Mastroeni (back)

My lineup best guess:

Bouna Time!
Ihemelu - Pablo - Harvey
DiRaimondo - LaBrocca
Cooke - C.Gomez - Clark
McManus - Casey

From the sounds of today's article in the Post we'll be going with a 4 man back line, but I'm guessing we'll actually see 3 so that FC can get both DiRaimondo and LaBrocca on the field. Also in the article Gomez is expected to be able to play. With Peterson out I assume Cookie will finally get back into the starting 11. Gomes is no longer an option, having been waived today to make room for Greg Dalby once the transfer window opens on the 15th.

Critical Matchup: Cooke vs. the Crew's left back.

Honestly I've seen so little of the Crew this year that I don't know who they have at the left back, but I think Cooke's crosses will be our best line of attack. Having a dangerous player out on the wing will free up space for Gomez to work in the center, and crosses into the box have seemed to be our most dangerous option in recent weeks.

Keys To Look For:

  • Has Clavijo lost the team? At this point last year as we descended into our 10-game winless streak it was obvious that nobody cared about playing for him any more. Has that happened again?

  • Honestly I had written another couple of Keys, but the first one is all that matters at this point. Do we show up to play like a real MLS team, or is this another Rapids mid-season swoon. Without that a player could have the game of their career and it probably won't matter.

Prediction: 1-0 loss. Given our recent play I don't have any faith in predicting any points on the road. The team will have to show me something before I believe in them away from the Dick again.

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