Following a season-worst losing streak, the Colorado Rapids are
on the verge of their longest winning streak in two seasons.
D.C. United, meanwhile, are simply searching for their first
The resurgent Rapids appear to have a decent chance to win three
in a row for the first time since July 29-Aug. 13, 2011 as they
host MLS-worst D.C. United on Sunday night.
Colorado went 0-4-1 across all competitions during a recent
five-game stretch – including three straight league losses – before
handing Eastern Conference-leading Montreal its first home loss
June 29 with a 4-3 victory.
The Rapids (7-7-5) built off that performance in their return
home as Nathan Sturgis and Deshorn Brown provided the goals and
goalkeeper Clint Irwin got his sixth shutout in a 2-0 win over New
York on Thursday.
With regular center back Shane O’Neill moving to the right
flank, Colorado showed signs of improvement defensively by allowing
fewer than two goals for the first time in seven matches across all
“There are a bunch of little things that are getting better,”
Rapids head coach Oscar Pareja told the team’s official website.
“The young boys are maturing. We expect progression from
Brown, tied for the team lead with five goals, has stepped up on
the attack of late with three goals in his last four games.
Sturgis may also be coming into his own, scoring four times in
his last eight matches. He had scored once in 82 career MLS
appearances entering this season.
The Rapids, tied for fifth in the West with 26 points, have
totaled six goals in their last two matches after scoring five
during their five-game winless streak in all competitions.
They’ve also outscored D.C. 22-7 while going 9-1-2 in the last
12 home meetings.
United (2-13-3), 0-6-3 on the road in all competitions, haven’t
won away from home since Nov. 8, 2012.
While D.C. advanced to the semifinals of the U.S. Open Cup with
a 3-1 win over New England on June 26, they remain last in the East
with nine points.
Colorado may be able continue to tighten things up defensively
against United, who have managed a league-worst eight goals and
been shut out 11 times following a 2-0 loss at Seattle on
United have only one goal in eight road matches and have a
316-minute scoreless streak outside RFK Stadium in league play
since Dwayne DeRosario scored in the 44th minute of a 2-1 loss at
FC Dallas on May 11.
“It’s still the final ball,” midfielder Chris Pontius said.
“It’s all about once we cross it or take a player one-on-one, our
decision making in the final third (is lacking). We do well to get
in positions like that, but we have to be a lot better.”
De Rosario had the go-ahead goal in a 2-0 home win over Colorado
last season, though he may not be available because of a hip