Beckerman looking forward to having Colorado fans behind him on Friday
The old 'club vs country' debate could be in play for some Rapids fans on Friday when the U.S. hosts Costa Rica in a crucial World Cup Qualifier at Dick's Sporting Goods Park (8 p.m MT, ESPN, UniMas).
On one side, there will be fans that will look to give Real Salt Lake forward Alvaro Saborio a hard time as he lines up for Costa Rica in what is expected to be a heavy pro-American crowd.
And on the other side, Rapids fans may finally get the chance to once again cheer on a former fan favorite in Kyle Beckerman - also now of Real Salt Lake - who is part of Jurgen Klinsmann's 23-man U.S. squad.
On Monday Beckerman was one of a handful of USMNT players who trained at Denver University's soccer stadium preparing for Friday's match.
"Hopefully," Beckerman told ColoradoRapids.com of having the Colorado fans behind him again. "When I played here I played with my heart and soul every game."
Of course Rapids fans know all too well that Beckerman was traded to rival RSL in 2007. Former coach Fernando Clavijo told MLSsoccer.com last week that the reason for the trade was that he couldn't keep both Beckerman and Pablo Mastroeni.
“Pablo and I could have always played together,” Beckerman said in the same article on MLSsoccer.com. “And you look at all the talent that was coming through that organization … oh wow. There were numerous things we could have done. But whatever."
Time has passed and both Beckerman and the Rapids have each won an MLS Cup as a result of the trade. When Beckerman comes to town with RSL he's treated like another rival opponent.
The now veteran midfielder - who spent five and a half season with Colorado - understands that Rapids fans, like all other fans, support their own players. That's why he's appropriately optimistic that the pro-American Colorado crowd will be on his side on Friday.
"I gave everything to the Rapids organization that I possibly could when I played here," he said on Monday. "The support was great when I played here, so hopefully it will be the same for the U.S. National Team."
Rapids fans supporting the USMNT may also find themselves cheering on two other rivals as RSL's goalkeeper Nick Rimando and defender Tony Beltran are also part of the U.S. team.