President Hinchey

Matchday Welcome: Rapids host Real Salt Lake

Rapids Fans:

Ever since our April 6 match against Real Salt Lake here at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, when Clint Irwin saved a penalty and Atiba Harris scored the game winner, we’ve had tonight’s game circled on the calendar. It has finally arrived, the third and final Subaru Rocky Mountain Cup match, and the deciding game. We want to thank you for coming out to the stadium to be a part of such an important match for everyone at our club. I also want to thank Mike Shaw Subaru for being a great partner with us and presenting tonight’s game.

When RSL came into the league in 2005, fans in Colorado and Utah joined together to start the Rocky Mountain Cup, bringing regional pride into the battle between the two teams, and helping spark a rivalry that remains strong to this day. Despite our 10-9-8 all-time record against RSL, they’ve managed to hold onto the Cup since 2007, and with a win or a draw tonight, we win the season series and bring the Cup back to the fans in Colorado. The Rapids’ supporters group, Centennial 38, has done a great job of enhancing this rivalry and making Dick’s Sporting Goods Park such a difficult place for Salt Lake to get a result. We hope to make you proud on the field tonight!

In addition to the regional rivalry, tonight’s match has great importance in the standings. We’re in second place in the Western Conference, just three points behind RSL, and could hit the top of our division with a win. The team is on a six-game unbeaten streak (4-0-2) and we’re putting ourselves in a good spot as we look to earn our spot in the playoffs. We’re excited that a match of this caliber is available on television both locally, on Altitude with Richard Fleming and Marcelo Balboa on the call, as well as nationally, as part of NBC Sports Network’s wrap-around “MLS Breakaway” show. Lots of eyes will be on Colorado for this match!

It’s been a busy week around our offices as we try to prepare for the stretch run of the season. Experienced and talented forward Vicente Sánchez is here, finalizing negotiations to have him join the club, and we’re still working on other ways to strengthen the squad before the transfer window closes next week. We also want to wish Davy Armstrong good luck in his short-term loan at Phoenix FC of the USL Pro Division. This team has been impressive throughout the year and our hope is that we’re only getting stronger.

Once again, thanks for coming out to tonight’s match, and for giving us your support and your voice as we attempt to bring the Subaru Rocky Mountain Cup back home to our fans. As usual, please let us know if we can do anything to make your visit better. You can contact Rapids Customer Service above Section 129, and I’m on Twitter: @tkhinchey3.

Come on you Rapids!

Tim Hinchey

Follow Tim Hinchey on Twitter.