2017.09.30 Roster Notes
Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Roster Notes: Colorado Rapids vs. Montreal Impact | Saturday, September 30

Starting Lineup:

GK Tim Howard is 20 minutes from hitting the 2,000-mark for the third time in his MLS career (MetroStars – 2001 ,2002). Howard registered two saves in the 2-0 loss at FC Dallas on Wednesday. This will be Howard’s 125th appearance and 123rd start in eight seasons in Major League Soccer.

DEF Mike da Fonte will appear in his first regular season match since the 2-1 loss at Portland Timbers on August 23. Prior to his suspension against D.C. United on August 19, da Fonte started 11 of 12 matches, going the distance in 10 of those.

DEF Kortne Ford went the distance for the sixth game in a row during the 2-0 loss at FC Dallas. The Homegrown is tied for first in appearances (Williams 16) and second in minutes played (1,367) amongst the defensive unit. Ford started alongside Burling for the third time this season, and first since the 1-0 win against Sporting KC on May 27.

DEF Axel Sjöberg returns to the Starting XI after sitting out the 2-0 loss at FC Dallas. Sjöberg’s first and only assist in his three-year MLS career came during the 2-2 draw at Montreal Impact on August 30, 2016. This season, Sjöberg has started 15 regular season matches, playing all but 45 minutes.

DEF Mekeil Williams will feature at left back for the fifth consecutive match. He will be making his 17th appearance of the season prior to joining up with the Trinidad & Tobago national team for the last two World Cup qualifiers. Williams registered an assist in three straight matches last season, with the third taking place during the 2-2 draw at Montreal Impact on August 30, 2016.

MID Jared Watts will be making his 18th start of the season, tying his previous best set in 2016. This will be his first appearance against the Montreal Impact after not seeing the field in the last three regular season meetings against the Canadian side.

MID Micheal Azira is seven minutes from reaching 5,000 in his second season with the Rapids. This year, Azira ranks first on the team in games started (27) and minutes logged (2,490). In four seasons in MLS, the Uganda international has made 85 appearances, with 69 of those coming from the start.

MID Marlon Hairston registered his first-ever assist in MLS during a 4-1 win against Montreal Impact on May 24, 2014. Hairston returns to the starting lineup after replacing Aigner in the 55th minute of the 2-0 loss at FC Dallas on Wednesday. This year, Hairston has appeared in every regular season match for the Rapids – 25 from the start and five off the bench.

MID Stefan Aigner played 55 minutes of his first MLS start during the 2-0 loss at FC Dallas on Wednesday. The German attacker has now seen the field in the last five regular season contests, registering one assist and four shots in 152 minutes.

MID Joshua Gatt returns to the lineup after sitting out the 2-0 loss at FC Dallas due to a leg injury. In his first season in Major League Soccer, the 26-year-old has tallied one goal and two assists in 16 appearances (eight starts) for the Rapids.

FWD Dominique Badji has now registered a shot on goal in the last five games, taking his season tally to a career-high 27. In three seasons with Colorado, the Senegalese forward has registered 17 goals and nine assists in 71 games (51 starts). This year, Badji has appeared in every regular season match except for the 1-0 loss at Atlanta United FC on June 24.

On the Bench:

GK Zac MacMath was an unused sub during the 2-0 loss at FC Dallas. This year, MacMath has played in eight regular season matches and both of the team’s U.S. Open Cup contests. In 10 career appearances against the Impact, the 26-year-old goalkeeper has a 2-5-3 record.

DEF Eric Miller made his 50th MLS start for the Rapids during the 2-0 loss at FC Dallas on Wednesday. The 24-year-old defender will be on the bench for the first tie since the 3-1 loss against LA Galaxy on June21. Miller spent his first two professional seasons with the Montreal Impact after the club drafted him fifth overall in the 2014 MLS SuperDraft.

MID Nana Boateng played 90 minutes for the first time in MLS, registering two shots in the 2-0 loss at FC Dallas on Wednesday. In his first year with the Rapids, the Ghanaian midfielder has started seven of the 14 matches he’s played in, logging 513 minutes along the way.

MID Mohammed Saeid will be on the bench for the first time since the 2-1 loss against Real Salt Lake on April 15. Since arriving in Commerce City on March 31, Saeid has started 24 of the 25 games he’s played in. He is now just 12 minutes shy of reaching the 2,000-minute mark with Colorado.

MID Dillon Serna went the distance for the first time since the 3-1 loss against Seattle Sounders FC on July 4. Serna is 132 minutes away from reaching the 1,000-minute mark for the second time in his career (2014). Despite only appearing in 17 games thus far, Serna’s 26 shots has him tied for third on the team.

M/F Shkëlzen Gashi played the last 20 minutes of the 2-0 loss at FC Dallas, replacing Saeid in the 70th minute. To date, Gashi’s only MLS match with a goal and an assist came during the 2-2 draw at Montreal Impact on April 30, 2016. In two seasons with the Rapids, Gashi has appeared in 42 games (37 starts) while registering 11 goals and nine assists.

FWD Alan Gordon has seen the field in 22 regular season games for the Rapids, with 18 of those coming as a substitute. In his 14-year career, Gordon has amassed 54 goals and 31 assists in 267 appearances (133 starts).

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