Saturday, September 24, 2016

Pre-Game: @ Vancouver pt3

by Brendan Wyatt 

Back to the great white north, Vancouver that is.  The Rapids face the Whitecaps for the third and final time this season.  Just because the Rapids seem to have been able to get the better of Vancouver over the last couple seasons, doesn’t mean this game is an easy win, but it is a must win.  As fans, we would love to see our beloved burgundy boys win out. Although one could look at the schedule and think it’s quite possible, we’ve seen this team play to the level of their opponent and grab ties where wins were within reach. 
Vancouver has dropped positions in the standings and now sits in 8th place.  With a home record of 5-4-5, one of those ties was against us.  A lot of teams have been able to hold ground when playing at home this season, but the Whitecaps are not one of them.  The Rapids though, haven’t done well on the road; their biggest win was a 1-0 triumph over 1st place FC Dallas.   With an away record of 3-5-6 the Rapids have shown that they can get points on the road, but can they start winning wherever they go?

With the playoffs around the corner, away performances matter. Soon, two game playoffs will decide which teams move on and even though a win at home and a tie on the road could get it done it would be nice to see our boys take care of business away from Dick’s Sporting Goods Park. 

As far as injury’s go, there isn’t much to report about.  Doyle is still recovering from an ankle sprain, Burling's turf toe is almost healed but Jared Watt’s performances of late might have earned him the starting spot in the back four.  We should see the full return of Shkelzen Gashi, but that’s about it.  The lineup should be nearly the same as what we saw these last two weeks. 
If you’re looking for somewhere to go to watch the game, C38 would like to invite you to the Celtic Tavern downtown.  It will be the last big party at that location as the Celtic will be moving to a new LoDo location in the coming months.  Come on out and show your support for the Burgundy & Yellow.  

Predicted starting XI: Tim Howard, Eric Miller, Jared Watts, Axel Sjoberg, Marc Burch.  Sam Cronin, Michael Azira, Marlon Hairston, Dillon Powers, Shkelzen Gashi, Dom Badji.