MLS Weekend Preview: Week 14

MLS Weekend Preview: Week 14

  • Posted by Drew Epperley
  • On July 2, 2010
  • 1 Comments
  • 2010 Week 14, Weekend Previews

Landon Donovan returns to MLS action. (Getty Images)

Its a holiday weekend for Major League Soccer. Typically the 4th of July is a big one for the league and it’s clubs. This time around the holiday falls on the weekend so that should mean a good bump in attendance as various clubs are doing their usual celebrations.

Seven games this weekend starting tonight in Salt Lake and ending Sunday evening in LA. This may be the first weekend that we’ll see if the league gets any boost from the World Cup now that guys like Landon Donovan are back in the States and with their clubs.

As always feel free to leave your thoughts and predictions below in the comments section on your club’s game.

Friday

New England Revolution – at – Real Salt Lake

Who can forget the last time the Revs went to Sandy, Utah? Yeah I’m sure Steve Nicol and company don’t want to think about that 6-0 beaten they took from RSL early last year. The thing is if your expecting some sort of revenge think again, New England rarely does well at Salt Lake and then again most clubs don’t fare too well there either.

RSL is on an impressive run that I see continuing tonight. They haven’t given up a goal in their last three games going 318 minutes of shutout soccer. I believe we’ll see them break their club record of 355 minutes tonight.

The key for the Revs will be getting possession and limiting offensive chances for RSL. Wing play is also going to be a factor in this one, if you spread RSL out you stand a decent shot at finding some holes in their back line. I just don’t believe New England is a club that has the talent right now to do that. RSL should win this one but it may be closer than some think.

Player to watch out for: Zach Schilawski – The goals really need to start coming from somewhere for New England. The rookie needs to find his form again and get things going.

WVH Prediction: RSL 2, New England 0

————————————————————————–

Saturday

Chicago Fire – at – Columbus Crew

The Fire are looking better as Marco Pappa continues to shine for them but going to Crew Stadium is never easy. The Crew have been solid lately as well as they continue to lead the way in the East but there are some locker room issues going on that could damper things for this game.

These two lately always seem to play to some wacky draws. One club will break out with a goal or two but only to let the other side come back late with the same amount. We could see that happen again this weekend though Chicago will be lacking some depth in the midfield with Baggio Husdic and Justin Mapp possibly out for this one. Without those two I think the Crew will likely be able to control the midfield, which should keep the Fire at bay at least a enough to get three points.

Player to watch out for: Brian McBride – Its always interesting to see the Crew legend again his old club.

WVH Prediction: Columbus 2, Chicago 1

————————————————————————–

Kansas City Wizards – at – FC Dallas

It was about this time last year that the Wizards came to Dallas only to get spanked 6-0, after that these two clubs went in opposite directions as Dallas pushed towards a playoff spot that they nearly got while the Wizards fell towards the bottom of the standings a bit when they had to fire their manager Curt Onalfo.

Dallas is on a bit of a roll here, winning their last couple matches. Their offense is finally coming into gear here and their defense is still doing enough to get results. KC however returned from the World Cup break and got hammered at home by New York 3-0. The defense for the Wizards hasn’t looked all that great this year against teams who possess the ball well so this one will be a big test for them.

I like Dallas in this one because of their ability to get wide and possess the ball a lot. Kansas City will need to take a page out of the Dallas book and go wide to see results as you can beat Dallas on the wings fairly easily. I’m just not sure the Wizards will get enough time on the ball to beat their old keeper Kevin Hartman.

Player to watch out for: Brek Shea – He’s been breaking out lately with a few quality goals. Dallas needs his goals while they figure out if Jeff Cunningham will score again or not.

WVH Prediction: Dallas 2, Kansas City 1

——————————————————————-

D.C. United – at – San Jose Earthquakes

D.C. makes the cross country trip to face the Quakes. Not many east coast teams do well on the cross country trip to San Jose for some reason. I don’t know their record by the Bay but since the league started in 1996 it hasn’t been great.

I think D.C. will need a bit of luck and a bit of magic out of youngster Andy Najar in this one to get some points. United hasn’t looked good on the road all season and also haven’t been able to create any sort of luck away from home. San Jose does a good job of getting wide and controlling the tempo, if D.C. can get the momentum early they could see a result.

San Jose looks poised to win this one though. They came back from the World Cup recess with a solid 0-0 draw in Salt Lake. Jon Busch got the nod in net for the first time since coming over from the Chicago Fire and really looked good in net for the Quakes. I see him being a difference maker in this one defensively for the Quakes.

Player to watch out for: Bobby Convey – Its sort of the theme this week, players going against their old clubs. Convey has looked solid lately for the Quakes and he will be a factor in this one.

WVH Prediction: San Jose 2, D.C. 0

—————————————————————-

Philadelphia Union – at – Chivas USA

The expansion Union is back on the road after opening their new venue last week. Going across the country to one of the league’s worst teams may be a good thing for them too. Though Philadelphia has lost seven of eight road trips this season.

The Goats are currently mired in a club-record six-game losing streak and will want to avoid a seventh straight loss. They just haven’t given us any reason to think that drought will be over anytime soon though. Offensively they haven’t scored much and in the back they’re letting in nearly everything that comes back there.

Chivas USA should get Jonathan Bornstein back in this one which will help their defense out as they go against rookie Danny Mwanga. Expect that to be a real interesting battle in this one tomorrow night.

I feel this could end level after 90 minutes as Chivas hasn’t shown me enough to pick them and Philadelphia just isn’t good enough on the road yet.

Player to watch out for: Sebastian Le Toux – He’ll likely be the reason why Philly scores in this one.

WVH Prediction: Chivas 1, Philadelphia 1

———————————————————————–

Sunday

New York Red Bulls – at – Colorado Rapids

Possibly the game of the week in some eyes, it should definitely be a good one to see. New York is fresh off their biggest road victory in five years as they travel to a place that gives lots of clubs fits.

Colorado has owned New York lately at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park though, including another July 4 beating in 2008 that saw them down the Red Bulls 4-0. I don’t expect that to happen Sunday though in this one as Colorado is good enough to pour on four goals but they haven’t shown that they can do it yet.

This one will be tight though. The midfield battle should be entertaining too as Joel Lindpere will have to go against probably one of the toughest defensive midfields the league has ever seen in Jeff Lawrentowicz and Pablo Mastroeni. If he can get something around those guys to set up Juan Pablo Angel, who seems to be back to his old self too, then the Red Bulls may get the full three points on the road again here.

I think this one ends level though as Colorado struggled to put away Houston last week and for the fact that New York has yet to play good in Colorado in a long time.

Player to watch out for: Conor Casey – If there was ever a game for Casey to break out and score a couple it would be this one.

WVH Prediction: Colorado 1, New York 1

——————————————————————–

Seattle Sounders FC – at – LA Galaxy

The boys are back in town. Landon Donovan and Edson Buddle return to the Galaxy this weekend and even ESPN2 is picking up on this one. That’s pretty big for the league to have ESPN2 just randomly say that they’ll pick up another game in midseason like this.

The Galaxy will return home in this one after drawing in Toronto last weekend. Adding Donovan and Buddle back to the lineup that has only lost a single game this year and still has only given up four goals just makes this club all the more dangerous.

Seattle looked terrible in their first meeting this year as Donovan and Buddle beat them down 4-0 at Qwest Field. Don’t expect the same beatdown this weekend but I wouldn’t be shocked to see LA control this game in the same fashion as that one. How Bruce Arena puts Donovan and Buddle in the lineup will be key for chemistry and flow but I doubt this bunch will miss a beat.

Player to watch out for: Fredy Montero – If Seattle is going to get going it has to be because of Montero.

WVH Prediction: LA 3, Seattle 1

  • Kaiser

    I will be at that Galaxy v. Sounders game and I hope you are right about the score! Taking my pregnant wife (baby is due in 2 weeks), so it kind of is our little girl's first Galaxy game. The first of many!