Head-to-head: Rapids lead the way
When the Colorado Rapids go up against arch-rivals Real Salt Lake this Saturday (7.30 p.m ko, on Altitude), it will be a 29th meeting between the two. And, despite RSL reaching loftier heights in recent times, including an agonizing penalty shoot-out defeat in last year’s MLS Cup, the Rapids boast the better head-to-head record since their first encounter on April 16, 2005 - the inaugural home game for then MLS newcomers RSL.
- In 28 previous regular season contests, the Rapids have won ten, with nine ties and are unbeaten in the last four encounters, although just one has been at Rio Tinto Stadium.
- The Rapids are yet to win at Rio Tinto, having lost four and tied three of the seven visits to date.Before Rio Tinto became home, RSL played at Rice-Eccles Stadium and it was here that the Rapids gained the last of their three wins in Utah, a 2-0 victory on April 30, 2007.
- The Rapids’ biggest win over RSL is a 2-0 triumph, which they have enjoyed on four occasions.
- On the flip side, their biggest loss came at Mile High Stadium on August 9, 2006 when beaten 4-1. They would then return to Rice-Eccles Stadium on September 2, with the Rocky Mountain Cup in the balance, and sneak a 1-0 victory, which was followed by one of the more controversial moments in the history of this young rivalry.
- Tense, tight affairs – often with few goals – the 2-2 tie last August produced the most goals in a meeting since October 23, 2010 (2-2 at DSGP).
- There have been five previous matches in May, including a US Open Cup tie in 2007. To date, it’s been a good month for the Rapids, as they have won three and tied two.
- In all, the two sides have faced each other twice in the US Open Cup (2006 & 2007), with the Rapids emerging victorious on both occasions.
- The 1-1 tie at Rio Tinto Stadium last season ended a run of three straight defeats for the Rapids, in which they failed to find the net in any of the games.
- This is the first of three meetings between the Rapids and Real Salt Lake this season. They meet at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park on August 2, and again at Rio Tinto on September 19.
- Omar Cummings and Conor Casey are joint leaders for the Rapids, with three goals each against RSL. Alvaro Saborio has netted six against the Rapids.
- No Rapids player has scored more than one goal in a game against RSL.
- Of the more bizarre encounters, a 1-1 tie on May 10, 2007 came about through a pair of own goals, including one from the man who is now Rapids head coach, Pablo Mastroeni. This is the only time in MLS history where a 1-1 draw has come purely from OGs.
- The most painful end to a Rocky Mountain Cup challenge came in 2010. Heading into stoppage time, the Rapids led 2-0 at home, and on course for their first RMC win in four years. Saborio reduced the arrears after intercepting a Matt Pickens attempted clearance, before tucking home a penalty in the 94th minute after Drew Moor had fouled Jamison Olave.