CCL: Rapids depart for El Salvador
Commerce City, Colo. (September 27, 2011) - The Colorado Rapids are set to depart for El Salvador on Tuesday afternoon to face Isidro Metapan Wednesday night in the second to last match of Champions League Group B match play. Tyrone Marshall, Omar Cummigns, Wells Thompson, Scott Palguta, and Mac Kandji lead a group of 17 players that will seek to keep the club's hopes of advancing to the quarterfinals alive.
The team, which will be guided by assistant coach Steve Guppy and reserves team coach Brett Jacobs, departs Denver International Airport at 12:30 pm for Houston, Texas, where they will connect and arrive in San Salvador, El Salvador just before 8 pm local time (San Salvador is in the same time zone as Denver).
With four points after four games, Colorado are tied with Real Espana for third place in Group B, sitting behind Santos Laguna (9 points) and Metapan (6 points). Colorado defeated Metapan 3-2 at Dick's Sporting Goods Park in August.
The top two teams from each of the four groups will advance to the quarterfinals, which will be played in early March 2012. The Rapids control their own destiny to make the quarterfinals heading into Wednesday's match, needing wins over Metapan and Santos on the last match day to advance. Colorado would remain alive with a tie against Metapan so long as Santos defeats or ties Espana in the other match. The Rapids would be eliminated with a loss.
COLORADO RAPIDS ROSTER FOR EL SALVADOR TRIP:
GOALKEEPERS: Stew Ceus, Ian Joyce
DEFENDERS: Tyrone Marshall, Eddie Ababio, Danny Earls, Mike Holody, Scott Palguta.
MIDFIELDERS: Wells Thompson, Joseph Nane, Ross LaBauex, Steven Emory, Davy Armstrong, Josh Janniere.
FORWARDS: Omar Cummings, Mac Kandji, Quincy Amarikwa, Andre Akpan.
- Palguta and Thompson are the only two Rapids players to start all four Champions League matches; Nane is the only other player to appear in all four (three starts)
- Palguta has been on the 18-man day of game roster for 35 of 36 matches in all competitions this year, and has scored two game-winning goals in League play
- Kandji, who scored two goals against Metapan in Colorado, is tied with Akpan for the team lead in CCL goals with two each
- Thompson has played in 29 of the 36 total games this year, and has two goals and three assists in League play
- Cummings leads the team with 6 assists in MLS play
- Akpan is the only Rapids player to score a goal in all three competitions - Open Cup, MLS, and CCL
- Janniere, Emory, Armstrong, and Ababio have yet to appear in an MLS or CCL game
- Emory and Janniere made their pro debuts in Colorado's U.S. Open Cup play-in game versus Chicago in March. Ababio and Armstrong have yet to make their pro debuts.