COMMERCE CITY, CO - APRIL 18 : Pablo Mastroeni #25 of the Colorado Rapids passes the ball as Julian de Guzman #6 of Toronto FC closes in during the second half at Dick's Sporting Goods Park on April 18, 2010 in Commerce City, Colorado. The Rapids won the game 3-1.(Photo by Marc Piscotty/Getty Images)
The Colorado Rapids were fairly lucky last year when it came to their health. The only real major injury during the season was not-really-a-starter-by-seasons-end winger Colin Clark re-shredding his ACL after doing the same thing the year previous, while only Conor Casey's head laceration against the Seattle Sounders kept one of the more key pieces of the team out of the line-up for a substantial amount of time.
The injuries to Pablo Mastroeni, Conor Casey and now Anthony Wallace - I still don't quite know how he's doing after injuring his leg in an awkward collision against FC Dallas - could prove disastrous to this squad, especially with one of the tougher legs of the schedule beginning with the away derby at Real Salt Lake on Wednesday of this week.
The Rapids showed how well they play without their captain during the FC Dallas game - not that even with Pablo they would have been able to win had the rest of the team played that lackluster - and Joesph Nane proved why I've called the defensive midfield spot the weakest part of the team when it comes to depth, with only the position of central defender coming close to that level of sucktitude. Pablo is the biggest driving force in the Colorado offense, specializing in locking down the midfield so that attacks on the other hand aren't as tough and using those steals and blocks to get the ball quickly out to the wingers, who provide the ball for the strikers etc.
Caleb Folan hasn't yet showed to me that he's a guy that's as high of a caliber as Conor Casey but even if he was, there's no team of strikers that know each other better in this league than Casey and Omar Cummings. I think we all know how Danny Earls responds to pressure if he has to replace Wallace on Wednesday.
Against Real Salt Lake, Mastroeni is doubtful and Casey is out for sure. This could prove disastrous to any chance they had before to win the first game away at Rio Tinto of any team in, by my count, approximately 2500 games.