- Posted by Drew Epperley
- On July 24, 2009
- 4 Comments
- 2009 Week 19, Alecko Eskandarian, Brad Davis, Chris Pontius, Cuauhtemoc Blanco, Darren Huckerby, David Beckham, Donovan Ricketts, Fredy Montero, Javier Morales, Landon Donovan, Robbie Findley, Weekend Previews
We steam roll into another weekend of soccer here starting with one game tonight along with a full slate of games tomorrow. Week 19 is the final week before the league’s All-Star break next week.
Plenty of good things will come out of next week during the league’s usual meetings that will go. We should more than likely hear a lot about certain things going on in the league like Beckham’s return, expansion, CBA talks and more.
But until then we have to wait it out for the news to come down the pipe with all of those goodies. Thankfully the full slate of games this weekend should keep us entertained until then. Everyone is in action this weekend except for Chivas USA, good thing too since they really need a week to regain focus here after their stumble these last two months. They pretty much are the New England of 2009, hot out of the gate then cooled off too much in the summer. At least the Revs won SuperLiga last year, Chivas can’t say the same.
Anyways, as always feel free to drop in your predictions below as well.
FC Dallas – at – Real Salt Lake:
One thing we know is RSL is possibly the biggest roller coaster of a team this season. One week they are way up and looking good (usually at home) and the next down in the dumps after a tough loss (typically on the road). All I can say by looking at this club, which is what I’ve been saying for month is they won’t make the playoffs until they win on the road. I’m even close to grouping them with their opposition tonight in the “won’t make the playoffs this year” category.
Anyways, the rant aside RSL is returning home after a tough blow in Columbus last week. Dallas comes off some much needed rest from last weekend to head back on the road to a place that they’ve done decently at before. Somehow Dallas has done well in RSL before but I just wonder if that will be the case tonight. I think Dallas will come in with a good bit of confidence after the week off and shock RSL early. Thing is I still don’t trust the Dallas defense on the road against guys like Robbie Findley or Javier Morales. This one will be close but I see RSL coming out with a Pioneer’s Day win thanks to a late goal (this series always has weird late goals).
WVH Prediction: RSL 2, Dallas 1
Chicago Fire – at – Seattle Sounders FC:
Game of the week right here and even ESPN has it. Yes ESPN, not ESPN 2 (that’s the LA-KC game). Good thing too because Chicago should be right back on track after their 2-0 win last week against San Jose at home. They now take their show on the road. So far this year Chicago has been one of the best road teams in the entire league. They will need all they can get as they face a hot Seattle side. How Chicago hands not having Brian McBride going forward will be interesting to see. I’d take it Chris Rolfe and Patrick Nyarko are going to be called upon more up top for the Fire. Seattle should have the defense to handle what Chicago has up top in this one but will they handle Blanco? I think so because of the turf. Blanco’s play on turf usually isn’t nearly the same as it is on grass.
I think Seattle takes the three points here. Not because of the turf but because of just how well they are playing. Also throw in the fact that Fredy Montero is getting a lot of attention on the other side of the pond right now and you can bet he will be gunning for a goal or two in this one. The Fire will keep it close but Seattle will find a way to come out on top.
WVH Prediction: Seattle 2, Chicago 1
Toronto FC – at – Columbus Crew:
Nothing like a little rivalry to get you into this weekend. If the last game mentioned wasn’t enough we get this tasty matchup as well. Columbus as we know are playing extremely well at home while Toronto really needs to find a good groove on the road here. What better place than Crew Stadium right? We know how their last meeting went back at the start of the season in Columbus, I don’t see it being much different aside from the late own-goal that gave Toronto a road point. I’m also curious to see how Toronto manager Chris Cummings handles his roster with their upcoming CONCACAF Champions League game coming up next week. I’d say he has to go for the valuable points here no matter what, which gets me thinking Toronto will jump on the board early to only see it slip away at the start of the second half. We know what Columbus can do without Guillermo Barros Schelotto last week and I think it will be enough to keep the stellar home unbeaten streak alive, but only with another draw.
WVH Prediction: Columbus 1, Toronto 1
New England Revolution – at – Houston Dynamo:
If there is one club that can knock Houston off in Houston it is New England. Even with the strong performance last week against Chivas at home by the Revs I just don’t see them surprising Houston in this one. The Dynamo played pretty well to be without some key players last week in Toronto and I think they’ll only play better this weekend at home with a couple of them returning. I see Houston playing their typical style of play, get a goal (probably thanks to a set up from Brad Davis) and play tough defense the rest of the way out. Should be more than enough as I just don’t see New England having enough firepower to get by the Dynamo defense. I like Steve Ralston and Shalrie Joseph and I’d like the Revs even more with a healthy Taylor Twellman for this one but the lack of a big offensive punch hurts them yet again here.
WVH Prediction: Houston 2, New England 0
LA Galaxy – at – Kansas City Wizards:
The second stop on the Beckham 09 Summer Tour takes us to the middle of the country in Kansas City. I believe this game is being played at the Wizard’s old stomming grounds, Arrowhead Stadium. I’m curious to see just how empty it will be there for this one. I’d much rather them jack up the ticket prices at their current place and have 9-10k there than an empty Arrowhead. But anyways, back to the story at hand.
If last week showed us anything, the Landon Donovan-Alecko Eskandarian-Edson Buddle group up top works. Best of all it doesn’t even have to use David Beckham that much. Now that Becks has had two games to get back into gear with the club (one league game and one friendly) we should see him more into the run of play with those three. That’s dangerous for KC due to how up and down their defense can play. KC is a good young club but without the proper parts they really aren’t anything great. Look for LA to be all over the place in this one and control the pace just as they did early against New York last week. KC just doesn’t have the offense to stay with LA, nor do they have the defense right now to slow them down.
WVH Prediction: LA 2, KC 0
New York Red Bulls – at – Colorado Rapids:
What’s the key to getting back into the playoff race when you are on the outside looking in? A visit from the lowly Red Bulls. New York hasn’t won anything in a while and after last week’s game I wouldn’t expect them to start anytime soon. Colorado should be better than what we saw last week in DC out of them. So far they’ve only dropped one home game this year too. Look for Colorado to handle the play throughout this one and grab one goal to finish off New York in typical fashion. What do I mean by that? Expect a late first half goal to be the difference maker and it could also be an own-goal on New York’s part.
WVH Prediction: Colorado 1, New York 0
DC United – at – San Jose Earthquakes:
Last game before the All-Star break is out west with the Quakes and United. San Jose looked pretty looks last week in Chicago and now they host another of the best from the east, that doesn’t look good for them as they head towards not making the playoffs for the second straight season. DC needs the points no matter what in this one so look for them to be gunning for a goal early on with guys like rookie Chris Pontius and Luciano Emilio. I like the Quakes but not enough to pick them in this one though. Darren Huckerby and company are nice but not enough against what DC has right now on the pitch. I do expect the Quakes to make it interesting but stumble late, DC is always good for a late goal.
WVH Prediction: DC 2, San Jose 1