The Colorado Rapids' frustrating struggles against Real Salt Lake in recent years have been well documented and I'm sure you don't need to be reminded of them. For three years in a row now, RSL has had a hand in knocking the Rapids out of the playoffs, be it by tiebreakers like two years ago or crushing them in the final game of the season like last year. They've also had the Rocky Mountain Cup for three years, unsurprisingly coinciding with the Rapids' playoff drought.
The Rapids can finally get themselves some sweet, hot revenge for what Salt Lake did to them at the end of last season tonight as they storm into Rio Tinto to try and solidify their playoff standing with a point or three. It's not going to be easy though. One does not simply walk into
Mordor Rio Tinto.
Colorado has not had good road form this season, with a 3-6-3 record away from home. Real Salt Lake has been nothing short of dominating at home, with no losses this season and a home unbeaten streak stretching an impressive 23 league games going into the showdown tonight. Their defense is tops in the league and with their gang of hot goalscorers Javier Morales, Robbie Findley etc. they can score from just about anywhere. The only possible savior for the Rapids in that regard is that RSL is coming off of a hard fought CCL match up earlier in the week and should be somewhat fatigued while the Rapids are playing on full rest.
The Rapids will be playing without their best striker, the red hot Omar Cummings. The Rapids will certainly miss his goalscoring form, as he'd put in five goals in his last five games including the only goal in their last road match. In his place will most likely be Macoumba Kandji or just a switch to the 4-5-1 formation that we saw Gary Smith pull out for most of the season until about August. The point here will most likely be to go into RSL, make a stand and end with a draw. The win is most likely out of our reach considering the horrible road form of the Rapids. However... you honestly never know with this team, and this could just as easily be Custer and his troops as it could be the 300 Spartans going in for the upset.
UZ'S PREDICTION: 2-1 REAL SALT LAKE