Whitecaps FC-Rapids Preview
Having their two top forwards in the starting lineup wasn’t
enough to boost the Colorado Rapids to a much-needed victory
earlier this week, but a visit from the expansion Vancouver
Whitecaps might help.
The Rapids will try to snap a franchise-worst, seven-game
winless streak at home when they face the Whitecaps for the first
time Saturday night.
Conor Casey and Omar Cummings – MLS’ top goal-scoring duo in
2010 – were on the field together for just the third time this
season Wednesday at Sporting Kansas City.
Casey gave his team an early lead with his third goal in as many
games, but Colorado had to settle for a 1-all draw. The reigning
MLS champion Rapids (5-5-9) had to survive three shots that went
off goal posts to earn that point.
“It was a battle,” defender Drew Moor told the league’s official
website. “There were a lot of fouls, a lot of stoppages and we were
under a lot of pressure. The first 50 or 60 minutes, we played like
the champions we are. After they scored, I think we showed
fantastic character in not giving them a second (goal).”
The Rapids are 2-5-9 since a franchise-best 3-0-0 start and have
one win in their past 11 games. They’re also 0-2-5 at Dick’s
Sporting Goods Park since beating D.C. 4-1 on April 3.
The Rapids, however, will get to face a Whitecaps club that’s
0-7-3 on the road, has one victory since its inaugural contest and
is on a franchise-worst three-game losing streak.
Vancouver (2-9-8) has scored one goal during that slide and been
shut out in consecutive games. Midfielder Terry Dunfield had a
chance to end those skids but missed a penalty kick in the 73rd
minute of Wednesday’s 1-0 loss to Columbus.
“It’s obviously very disappointing,” coach Tom Soehn said. “We
have to reward ourselves. You’ve got to bury (penalty kicks). Those
are opportunities that you have to take advantage of and we
Vancouver played a man down over the final 13 minutes after a
red card to midfielder Shea Salinas, who will have to sit out this
game. The Whitecaps might also be without captain Jay DeMerit
(groin), leading goal scorer Eric Hassli (bruised foot) and
midfielder Davide Chiumiento (hamstring).
The Rapids won’t have captain Pablo Mastroeni, who injured his
knee Wednesday, because of yellow card accumulation.
Joseph Nane could be Mastroeni’s midfield replacement. Nane, who
played for Toronto FC in 2010, has appeared in four games this