Sunday afternoon the Rapids started their long road back from the injuries that have plagued them so far this season. Martin Rivero saw his first action of the season and Pablo Mastroeni also saw his return to action. When Rivero stepped onto the field the Rapids saw some of their best chances for the entire game. Rivero has been seriously missed by the Rapids so far. His vision is something the no other Rapids player has shown.
The Rapids also saw the return of Pablo Mastroeni; who returned in the 83rd minute. While not as big of in impact as Rivero; Pablo's return is an important one due to the latest in this long run of injuries that the Rapids have endured. Hendry Thomas experienced a left hamstring strain after a play that looked like it could have been a lot worse. Pablo's return will most likely mean that he will be filling in while Hendry is out.
The big question now is what happens to the midfield now. The Rapids have seen Dillon Powers, Nick LaBrocca and Nathan Sturgis all play the holding Mid-field roll. The formation that Oscar Pareja decides to play will largely determine who plays Saturday. Jaime Smith saw his first start of the season last Sunday and will probably see extended time again. Rivero will most likely be a sub again due to his being out for as long as he has been. Meaning that we will most likely see a starting Midfield of Pablo, Powers, Smith, LaBrocca.
This is also contingent on the availability of both Deshorn Brown and Edson Buddle; both of whom have missed the last two games due to injuries. With this being the case, and Danny Mwanga looking like he is not ready to play at this level. Kamani Hill and Attiba Harris will most likely be starting up top. Should Brown or Buddle be able to play however I would guess Hill or Harris would fill in for LaBrocca on the Mid wing.
The bright lining for the Rapids right now is that even with all of these injuries the depth that was accrued during the offseason is paying off. With Rivero coming back to full health and Kevin Harbottle not far behind there is a light at the end of this long tunnel. Hopefully the Rapids can stay close in these matches and once they are back at 100% they will have a fighting chance at still making the playoffs.