Friday, May 29, 2009

Rapids Try to Water Down Red Bulls

The Rapids are on the road yet again, this time all the way to the East Coast to face New York. This will be the last trip for the Rapids to the concrete pad that is the field at Giants Stadium. By the time of their trip to NY in 2010 the new Red Bull Arena will be open. Game time for this one is at 5:30 pm and the supporters groups will be gathering at the British Bulldog downtown.

Official Injury Report:
OUT: GK Steward Ceus (R meniscus tear/surgery); DOUBTFUL: MF Ivan Guerrero (L ankle strain)

Official Discipline Report:

The Red Bulls are missing two defenders to injury and midfielder Jorge Rojas is suspended. My guess at the Rapids lineup is:

Kimura - Ihemelu - Gibbs - Harvey
LaBrocca - Ballouchy - Clark
Cummings - Casey

Gary Smith talked after the USOC game about how Cooke is likely to still be his guy to bring a spark off the bench, so I'm guessing that the LaBrocca - Ballouchy combo will start in midfield. The defensive line is hard to figure as there's 5 or 6 players playing for the 4 spots, but I think we'll see the Kimura - Ihemelu combo this week.

Key To Look For:

The turf. Giants Stadium is easily the worst surface in the league (especially now that FSL has left Rice-Eccles) and everyone hates playing on it. Strange bounces and unusual speed make balls hard to predict and everyone will need to be on their toes.

Prediction: 1-0 win, goal by Conor Casey. I feel like my Rapids bias is showing on this one, but New York looks pretty bad right now. With the consistent production from Conor Casey I think we can find a way to score, and its about time Pickens puts up a shutout.

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