- Posted by Drew Epperley
- On July 11, 2008
- 2 Comments
- Weekend Previews
Small slate of games this weekend in Major League Soccer, mostly due to this time of year being close to the All-Star break and due to four MLS clubs participating in SuperLiga against the best from Mexico (more on that later).
The small slate is only taking place on Saturday night, with six clubs involved. A couple of conference battles and one interesting interconference battle out in the Mormon country.
I won’t go too much into last nights double header of games. I watch a majority of each and was really not surprised much at all by either result. The Galaxy-Chivas game was a lot closer than I had actually imagined, the 1-1 draw was a very interesting game with lots of ups and downs. The KC-New York game wasn’t really a shocker, definitely a result the Wizards were looking for and one that showed the biggest weakness in New York, their defense.
So let’s get to it…
Colorado Rapids – at – San Jose Earthquakes: It seems like a perfect time for the Quakes to get another victory right? The come into this game in a bit of a rut while the Rapids come in after an impressive blowout against New York a week ago. The Quakes first win of the year came on the road to these same Rapids. Could magic happen again at home? We will see.
Colorado has to come out and show the result a couple months ago was a total fluke here. They need to use that same intensity that they showed against the Red Bulls and score in bunches again on a fairly good defense in San Jose. The Quakes don’t allow a lot of goals but if they get down they definitely don’t have the offense to keep up as we’ve seen time and time again.
San Jose needs some home cooking too. I think they can do what they did to the Rapids but scoring has been a terrible issue all year long. If the Rapids get on the board early, which I think they can, it will be a long night for the expansion side. The Quakes will however play well in the first half I think but come up short in the end. I don’t expect a bunch of goals out of the Rapids because they haven’t shown consistency on offense like that all year long from game-to-game.
Rapids win but not by a whole lot. Those new Quake players in the midfield can’t come soon enough I think.
WVH Prediction: Colorado 1, San Jose 0
Toronto FC – at – Chicago Fire: Oh boy this should be a dandy. The Fire have been largely a miss since the start of summer, while the Reds aren’t at all worth talking about on the road. So what gives in this one? Does Chicago bounce back or does Toronto find some road magic for once?
I think it’s fair to say that the Fire have some distractions right now in their locker room with Blanco and its showing up on the field. And this has turned into a bit of a little rivalry as well so its going to be interesting to see what kind of emotions come out in play for the Fire tomorrow night.
On paper you’d think the Fire would be due to break through of the slight funk that they are in right now. Coming home against a side that hasn’t played well EVER on the road. But they play the game on the field and not on paper so that logic sort of gets thrown out right now for me.
I actually like Toronto in this one, not because of injuries or fatigue problems for either side (both played midweek matches for other competitions). Its because of those distractions going on with the Fire. I don’t think they are all Blanco related either, I just have a feeling there is more to the subject than what we are really seeing right now.
Toronto comes in and steals some points thanks to the play of Amado Guevara and Maurice Edu. Don’t be shocked if Edu puts one in the back of the net, out of three games last year against the Fire he scored twice.
WVH Prediction: Toronto 2, Chicago 1
Columbus Crew – at – Real Salt Lake: RSL is still unbeaten at home as they host one of the best road sides in MLS right now, the Crew. Columbus is unbeaten in their last four games, thus making this the matchup of Saturday to most people. Weird seeing RSL twice now in discussion for game of the weekend, but that’s what happens when you get better I suppose.
Anyways, I like the matchup a lot, even with RSL coach Jason Kreis watching from the cheap seats. Hopefully for RSL fans that fine/suspension to their boss will light a little fire in them to play well.
Interesting note, RSL has yet to beat Columbus at home in their short history here in the league. In three games against the Crew, RSL has lost two and tied once (that coming last year). Of course RSL is hoping history doesn’t repeat itself here.
I think RSL can overcome emotions from last week and get a win in this one but my feelings are going with the Crew here. There is a reason why I say they are the hardest club to beat in MLS right now and they should show that on the Wasatch Front tomorrow night.
I expect it to be a close encounter but I see the Crew coming through in the end on the road. It all comes down to midfield play and defensive play. I trust the Crew’s just a little more than RSL’s bunch. Plus there is always the suspect finishing on RSL’s part in the offensive third. They just haven’t been able to get it done in the penalty box lately (3 goals in their last six).
WVH Prediction: Columbus 2, RSL 1