Friday, July 25, 2008

I wonder if they stay at the YMCA while on the road?

The Village People, otherwise known as the Columbus Crew, are in town on Sunday. Special late Sunday kickoff of 7:30pm at The Dick due to the All-Star Game.

Here's the injury report:

OUT: GK Justin Hughes (L groin), FW Tom McManus (L knee); QUESTIONABLE: MF Colin Clark (R hamstring)

INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: Omar Cummings, Jamaica - Jamaica is playing El Salvador in Dallas on Saturday night and Cummings plans to be back for the game, but his availability will be dependant on how much he plays Saturday night.

DISCIPLINE: Suspended after 2 more yellow cards - Colin Clark, Pablo Mastroeni

(Interesting to note that it took 18 games this season for anyone to get close to yellow card suspension Allen pointed out in the comments that Pablo was on warning last game as well)

My lineup prediction:

Bouna Time!
Ihemelu - Pablo - Erpen
C.Gomez - Ballouchy
Cooke ------------- Clark
H.Gomez - Casey

This lineup, with McManus and Gomez taking the second striker spot, has gotten 5 points in the last three games and I still don't see Clavijo making any changes. If Clark is too injured to go I expect we'll see LaBrocca pushed wide into his spot and DiRaimondo playing d-mid. We're thin at striker with Cummings on Nats duty and McManus injured, expect to see Peterson come off the bench if we need more firepower.

Critical Matchup: Nick LaBrocca vs. Guillermo Barros Schelotto

Schelotto is the league leader in assists with 10. Columbus has lost Ekpo and Rogers from their attack due to Olympic duty, so there will be extra pressure on Schelotto to produce chances. This is LaBrocca's toughest match-up to date, but if he can shut down GBS the Rapids will have a good chance to get a shutout.

Keys To Look For:

  • We're starting our longest home stand of the season with 3 home games (4 if you count the Everton game). We need to come into this group of games with the mentality of needing 9 points, no less than 7 as the minimum.

  • Where is Bouna's confidence? He had the type of game in Dallas that can really sake a young keeper. Can he put it behind him and move on?

  • How tired is Pablo after playing 90 minutes in the All-Star Game? Can he put in a full effort for us?

  • Not focusing so much on our first half performance this week, but we need an early goal. Columbus has only one once in Colorado, and never in the last 8 years. We need to get on top early.

  • Will they Dynamic Duo of Erpen and Ihemelu cut out the Keystone Kops routine and give us a solid game?

Prediction: 1-0 win. Columbus has a bad record in Colorado, and is missing two pieces of their offence. I think we manage a shutout and Casey continues to appear on the score sheet, either with the goal or an assist.


Allen said...

Pablo was on the 2-games from suspension list last week again the super skirts.

C-bus said...

How dare you post on the Crew Forums on Bigsoccer for shameless self-promotion!

However, I completely agree with the prediction for the same reasons you listed. And I was looking forward to seeing Rogers live for the first time :(