Preview: Colorado vs Vancouver, August 17
COLORADO RAPIDS vs VANCOUVER WHITECAPS FC
DICK’S SPORTING GOODS PARK, Commerce City, Colo.
August 17, 2013 (WEEK 25, MLS Game #227) 7:30 p.m. MT (Altitude; BUY TICKETS)
A huge meeting in the Western Conference is ahead on Saturday evening as the Colorado Rapids and Vancouver Whitecaps FC face off at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park. The teams are tied for second place in the division -- but are also just two points clear of the playoff line. The Rapids are undefeated in their last eight games after a 1-1 draw at Chivas USA last weekend; Whitecaps FC snapped a three-game winless run with a 2-0 victory against the San Jose Earthquakes at BC Place last weekend.
REFEREE: Jose Carlos Rivero. AR1 (bench): Brian Poeschel; AR2 (opposite): Jeff Muschik; 4th: Younes Marrakchi
MLS Career: 16 games; FC/gm: 26.9; Y/gm: 3.6; R: 4; pens: 6
DISABLED LIST: COL: Diego Calderón
SUSPENDED: COL: Tony Cascio (through August 18)
SUSPENDED NEXT YELLOW CARD: COL: Shane O’Neill, Nathan Sturgis … VAN: Nigel Reo-Coker, Russell Teibert
SUSPENDED AFTER TWO YELLOW CARDS: COL: Dillon Powers
INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: none
ALL-TIME (5 meetings): Rapids 2 wins, 6 goals … Whitecaps FC 2 wins, 6 goals … Ties 1
AT COLORADO (2 meetings): Rapids 1 win, 2 goals … Whitecaps FC 1 win, 2 goals … Ties 0
RETURN MATCHES: 10/19: Colorado Rapids vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC, 4 p.m. MT; 10/27: Vancouver Whitecaps FC vs. Colorado Rapids, 5 p.m. PT
6/16: VAN 1, COL 0 (Le Toux 80)
7/4: COL 0, VAN 1 (Mattocks 43)
9/23: VAN 2, COL 2 (Rochat 64; Miller 68 – Cummings 34; Smith 86)
- The teams have evenly split their five meetings all-time. The Rapids won both encounters in Vancouver’s inaugural MLS season of 2011; Whitecaps FC won the first two meetings last year, before they reached a draw in their final clash.
- The teams will conclude the season against each other in a home-and-home series over the final two weeks.
- Coaches record: Oscar Pareja vs. CHV: P5 W2 L2 D1 … Martin Rennie v COL: P3 W2 L0 D1
The Colorado Rapids stretched their undefeated streak to eight games, coming back for a 1-1 draw with Chivas USA on Sunday evening at StubHub Center. The Rapids are in a tie for second place in the Western Conference with 36 points from 25 matches.
- Chivas USA took the lead after just five minutes. Carlos Alvarez took a pass from Erick Torres just outside the top of the area and curled home a perfectly placed left-footed shot into the top left corner past Colorado goalkeeper Clint Irwin.
- The Rapids had a glorious opportunity to tie the game in the 27th minute when Steven Purdy was whistled for a handball inside the box, but Chivas goalkeeper Dan Kennedy made a diving stop on Deshorn Brown’s penalty shot.
- Both sides went a man down on either side of halftime. Chivas midfielder Gabriel Farfan received a straight red card in the 33rd minute for stepping on Shane O’Neill’s shin, but Colorado's Tony Cascio was sent off in the 49th minute after receiving a second yellow card.
- Chivas were then left with nine men in the 63rd minute when Tristan Bowen was given a straight red for spitting toward Colorado defender Chris Klute.
- The leveler came in the 80th minute. Klute swung in a cross from the left flank and Martin Rivero snapped home a header from the heart of the area.
- Rapids head coach Oscar Pareja made three changes to the team that came back for a 2-2 draw with Real Salt Lake at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park. Nick LaBrocca, Jaime Castrillon and Tony Cascio all came into the midfield for Marvell Wynne, Atiba Harris and Edson Buddle.
- COLORADO RAPIDS (4-2-3-1): Clint Irwin - Shane O'Neill, Drew Moor, German Mera (Vicente Sanchez 46), Christopher Klute - Dillon Powers (Danny Mwanga 75), Nathan Sturgis - Nick LaBrocca (Martin Rivero 62), Jaime Castrillon, Tony Cascio (ejected 49) - Deshorn Brown.
- The Rapids extended their undefeated streak to eight games with the draw at Chivas USA. It’s one game shy of the club record unbeaten run, set April 30-June 11, 2011.
- “The boys are not happy with a point anymore, which is good,” Rapids head coach Oscar Pareja said. “I thought we came back from a game that was weird. With what happened in the game, [and] I’ve been in those games before, you don’t have answers. But I thought the players had answers in the second half especially, and I’m very proud of them.”
- Martín Rivero – who headed in the Klute cross for his first goal of 2013 – made his first appearance since June 19, coming on for the final half-hour. He led the club with eight assists a year ago.
- Vicente Sanchez made his MLS and Rapids debut, coming on at halftime into a central midfield role.
- “It was good to have Martin back, good to have Vicente involved in the game just after four [training] sessions in the week and then he came up and gelled with the group and gave us a fantastic contribution to our creativity and mobility; he’s a player that’s going to help us a lot,” said Pareja. “Martin came in and scored a goal; those are the positive things I keep and like I told the players, they lost two points tonight and won one.”
- Tony Cascio made his first start since April 20, coming in on the left of the midfield. But he will miss the Whitecaps FC match after being sent off early in the second half with a second yellow card.
- Chris Klute leads the Rapids with seven assists this season after setting up the equalizer. Klute has assists in back-to-back games and in four of the last eight games.
- “Definitely disappointing,” Klute said. “We know we should’ve come out of here with three points. We definitely need the three points for playoffs."
- “It was one of those games,” Pareja said. “Sometimes the game is tough when you play with one man up, and the other team is just sitting and waiting. It’s not easy, but what we can say is Chivas didn’t have any options when they were one man down and we controlled them all the time.”
VANCOUVER WHITECAPS FC
Vancouver Whitecaps FC saw their winless streak come to an end after three games, defeating the San Jose Earthquakes 2-0 on Saturday afternoon at BC Place. Whitecaps FC are in a tie for third place in the Western Conference with 36 points from 23 matches.
- Whitecaps FC finally took the lead on the hour. Nigel Reo-Coker made a lung-busting run from his own half before sliding the ball forward into the area where Camilo slid ahead of defender Steven Beitashour to poke home inside the left post.
- The lead was doubled in the 74th minute. Russell Teibert slipped a neat ball into the box and Reo-Coker all but whiffed as the ball went past, allowing Kenny Miller to step into space and drive a right-footed effort to the back of the net.
- Whitecaps FC head coach Martin Rennie made two changes to the team that reached a 1-1 draw with the Portland Timbers at Jeld-Wen Field. Gershon Koffie came into the midfield in place of Brad Rusin, and Kenny Miller started in attack in favor of Kekuta Manneh.
- VANCOUVER WHITECAPS FC (4-1-2-3): David Ousted - Lee Young-Pyo, Johnny Leveron, Carlyle Mitchell, Jordan Harvey - Gershon Koffie - Daigo Kobayashi (Matt Watson 75), Nigel Reo-Coker - Russell Teibert, Camilo Sanvezzo, Kenny Miller (Tommy Heinemann 86).
- Whitecaps FC striker Camilo Sanvezzo moved back into a tie atop the MLS Golden Boot standings with his 14th goal of the season, starting Vancouver on its way vs. San Jose. It was his first goal after a two-game drought, which followed 10 goals over an eight-game span.
- “We’ve got a couple strikers who put the ball in the back of the net, and I think that’s a really key thing, both Kenny and Camilo getting goals today,” said Whitecaps FC head coach Martin Rennie. “And there was really a lot of great individual performances from our team.”
- Nigel Reo-Coker had his first two-assist game in MLS, his first assists since June 15.
- “I think he has an impact on the game offensively, but he doesn’t necessarily always get the assist or a goal. But I think he does have an impact. He drives us forward and I thought he did that really well again,” said Rennie. “I thought in the second half in particular, that was a major factor in the game, as well as Kenny [Miller] being up higher, closer to the goal, caused more problems in behind. And as a result of that, I think we were much more dangerous.”
- Russell Teibert took the team lead with his eighth assist, making a fourth consecutive start wide on the right of the attack.
- Gershon Koffie slotted into the holding role in the Whitecaps FC midfield with Brad Rusin unavailable following his injury early in the Portland match. Jun Marques Davidson did not feature though he was available after a one-match ban.
- “I think that’s one of his best performances for a long time. He did so much of the things we’ve been asking him to do. I thought that also contributed to our possession, we had the ball more today and kept the ball better, and I think he was a part of that,” Rennie said. “I really think he has the attributes to play that position really, really well. And I think that’s the best balance we’ve had in midfield this season.”
- Said Reo-Coker: “We're lucky we've got the options we have. We've got so many great players we can play and interchange and the difference with Gershon, Daigo [Kobayashi], myself, is we have the ability to interchange. It's not one designated player doing that deep role. All three of us have the ability to do that and that's a slight different advantage we've had in playing that three as as [opposed to] playing with different other players.”
- David Ousted started his second game in goal, recording his first clean sheet in MLS.
- “I thought he did really well. He kicked the ball very well. I thought he was calm under pressure and I thought he made two excellent saves that made a big difference to us winning the game,” said Rennie. “Those kinds of saves win you games and win you points. He gave us a great foundation to build from. I think he’s started off his Whitecaps career as well as you could possibly hope.”