Friday, July 2, 2010

Rapids Try To Continue On-Field 4th Of July Fireworks Tradition

The traditional 4th of July game in Colorado is here. The Rapids always play well on the 4th, in 14 seasons they have 11 wins and 2 draws, with the only loss being last year to Chicago. They've also averaged 2 goals a game, and had some notable moments like the first two hat tricks in team history (John Spencer and Chris Carrieri). Game time this week is 7pm at the Dick, and the supporters groups will be starting their tailgate at 4pm. along with the traditional hot dogs, soda, and keg there will also be a shrimp boil.

As has been my tradition for 4th of July I will not be at the game and probably not watching it live. Instead I'll be celebrating my 12th wedding anniversary that night. I'm not sure how my wife has managed to put up with me for 12 years, but she deserves not having to deal with soccer on that night. ;)

Injury Report:
OUT: DF Julien Baudet (L knee strain); MF Ciaran O'Brien (L hip sprain); FW Ross Schunk (R ACL tear); PROBABLE: DF Kosuke Kimura (L ankle stress fracture)

Discipline Report:

I believe that if Casey gets through this game without a yellow he'll get one knocked his total off for good behavior. NYRB has 4 players listed out, and also played a midweek U.S. Open Cup game on the road, so they'll have some roster decisions to make. My guess at the lineup:

Wynne - Moor - Palguta - Earls
Larentowicz - Pablo
Cummings - Ballouchy - Smith

I don't see Smith making any changes. Clark didn't play well enough when he was subbed in in Houston to reclaim his starting spot form Jamie Smith. Since Koz is still probable, I assume he won't be getting back into the starting XI either. That makes Gary's decisions fairly easy.

Key To Look For: Juan Pablo Angel. He's on fire right now and the Rapids need to figure out how to deal with him. The best strategy might be for Pablo and Larentowicz to cut off the supply through midfield to him. If Angel can be contained it will be very difficult for NYRB to win this game.

Prediction: 2-1 win, brace of goals by Conor Casey. The Rapids are on a 5 game unbeaten streak and are back at home for the first time in a month. That, combined with the annual 4th of July crowd, will give them the boost they need to get past a good RBNY team.

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