COMMERCE CITY CO (Sept. 24 2008) – The Colorado Rapids got back to work training this week after earning a point in their third straight game matching a season high.
Colorado will face an Eastern Conference opponent for the final time in the regular season this year as they take on the Red Bulls at Giants Stadium. This will be the Rapids’ last game in the Meadowlands as New York are planning on opening Red Bull Arena for the 2009 MLS season.
On Friday the team will hold their training session on one of the artificial turf fields at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in order to attempt to acclimate themselves to the surface they will see on Saturday.
Rain is in the forecast for New York this weekend which is a nice respite compared to the last two trips Colorado have taken to the Big Apple. Afternoon kickoffs and sunny days have led to extreme temperatures on the field in those matches.
Colorado Rapids vs. New York Red Bulls
This Sat. Sept. 27
5:30 p.m. MT
Colorado Rapids 1 vs. New England Revolution 1
Sat. Sept. 20
7 p.m. MT
Dick’s Sporting Goods Park
The Rapids picked up just one injury from the game against the New England Revolution. Tom McManus picked up a knock to his left knee and is questionable for this Saturday’s game.
Greg Dalby who was on the report last week has recovered from his injury and has been taken off the report.
Justin Hughes has begun his rehab and has been working on the sidelines at practice in order to expedite his recovery.
WEEKLY TEAM NOTES
Playoff Watch: With just five games remaining the Rapids occupy the third seed in the Western Conference with their 31 points. This year the top three teams in each conference make the playoffs as well as the next two teams with the highest point total regardless of conference. Colorado currently hold the tiebreaker over Real Salt Lake because of their superior goal-differential as the teams are tied on points and even head-to-head. As of now Columbus have been the only team to clinch a playoff spot. Nobody has been eliminated from contention either with just six points separating last place from the final playoff berth.
Streaking: In the past month the Rapids have seen their longest scoring draught of the year and their longest shutout streak. Mike Petke snapped the club's scoreless streak at 283 minutes fourth longest in MLS this year with his header at Dallas on Sept. 4. While snapping that streak the Rapids started their season long shutout streak. Kenny Mansally of New England snapped that streak at261 minutes 10th longest in MLS this year with his goal on Sept. 20.Here are the scoreless and shutout streaks that have lasted over 100 minutes for Colorado this year:
Minutes Start End
283 Aug. 16 vs. KC Sept. 4 at DAL
214 July 19 at DAL Aug. 16 vs. KC
198 April 12 at NE April 26 at CHI
160 June 14 at TOR June 28 at CLB
261Aug. 29 at RSLSept. 20 vs. NE
172June 28 at CLBJuly 12 at SJ
166June 14 at TORJune 28 at CLB
142March 29 vs. LAApril 5 at KC
139April 26 at CHIMay 10 at HOU
138May 10 at HOUMay 24 vs. CHV
136April 5 at KCApril 19 vs. SJ
Assist-Man Cookie: Midfielder Terry Cooke is tied for second in the league with 10 assists on the season. This is the second-highest assist total of his four-year career. In 2006 he led MLS with 12 assists on the season. He currently has registered an assist in the Rapids' last three matches. Cooke also strung together a three-game assist streak earlier in the year which is the second longest assist streak in the league this season. Cooke now has 31 lifetime assists as a member of the Rapids moving him up to second all-time in Rapids history behind Chris Henderson (53).
League-Leading Defense: Through 24 games this season the Rapids lead all MLS clubs in "total shots against