Storylines to Watch:
Difficult sophomore year
Minnesota United FC’s second year in MLS has seen it's share of ups and downs. Despite having a successful year at TCF Bank Stadium (10-4-1), Adrian Heath’s side have struggled to find their form on the road (1-13-2). The Loons have the third-most goals conceded in MLS (63), a big reason why Minnesota will be watching the playoffs from home again this year.
“It’s just another reminder to me that we are not where we want to be moving forward,” Heath said. “We have made strides. This team’s better this year than it was last year. But if we are going to be really competitive when we move into our new stadium, then we have to make the appropriate changes to make us better.”
Injury Bug Strikes Again
Season-long injuries to three key midfielders in Sam Cronin (cervicogenic dysfunction), Ethan Finlay (ACL) and Kevin Molino (ACL) have clearly been a factor in Minnesota’s sophomore season.
More recent injuries include Abu Danladi (right leg injury), Collin Martin (right ankle injury) and Romario Ibarra (hamstring injury). The three were all absent when Minnesota played Philadelphia this past weekend, and unless progress has been made this week could sit out for Saturday’s game against the Rapids.
Player to Watch: Darwin Quintero
Darwin Quintero had nearly a decade of experience in Liga MX before joining MLS. He became Minnesota United’s first-ever Designated Player on March 31, 2018 when a transfer from Club América was completed.
Quintero is one of six MLS players to reach double-digits in goals and assists this season. The 31-year-old has tallied 11 times, while adding 13 assists – both team-leading numbers. This past Saturday, Quintero's beautiful strike was the only consolation during Minnesota’s 5-1 loss to the Philadelphia Union at Talen Energy Stadium.
Quintero was a key contributor during his career in Mexico, scoring over 100 goals across all competitions and hitting double-digit goals in five of seven seasons from 2009-10 to 2015-16. The Tumaco, Colombia native also has 14 caps for his national team, the last coming in September 2012.
Minnesota United FC vs Colorado Rapids - Head-to-Head
The Rapids have met Minnesota United FC three times in the regular season resulting in a 1-1-1 overall record. The Loons currently sit in ninth in the Western Conference with a 11-17-3 overall record. The Rapids are coming off a 3-0 loss at home against LAFC. The Rapids' season record currently sits at 6-19-6 overall.
- Head-to-Head Overall: Minnesota United FC 1 wins, 5 goals | Colorado Rapids 1 win, 5 goals | 1 tie
- Head-to-Head in Minnesota: Minnesota United FC 1 wins, 1 goal | Colorado Rapids 0 wins, 0 goals | 0 ties
- Previous Meeting: Colorado Rapids 3, Minnesota United FC 2 (June 23, 2018)