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Colorado Rapids MatchDay First Look: Seattle Sounders

The Rapids welcome the Rave Green to Dick's this weekend

Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports

The Colorado Rapids and Seattle Sounders meet for the first time in 2016 and if you were to look at the table you would think something is wrong.  Normally, it is the Sounders near the top of the West with the Rapids out of playoff contention.  For now, those roles are reversed as the Rapids have the better record in the Western Conference.

The Records

The Rapids are 4-2-1 (13 points) and sit third in the Western Conference table and third overall in the Supporters Shield Standings.  The Sounders are eighth in the Western Conference at 2-3-1 (7 points) and are 13th in the Supporters Shield Standings.

The Formations

No secret with the Rapids: they play a 4-2-3-1 and I cannot see a scenario where that changes in this match.  The Sounders started the season playing a 4-2-3-1 as well but have switched to a 4-3-3 in their last two.  Coincidentally, they have not lost those two games in the 4-3-3.

Recent Results

18 July 2015:  1-0 win at Seattle Sounders

27 May 2015:  0-1 loss at Seattle Sounders

18 April 2015:  1-3 loss at Dick's Sporting Goods Park

5 October 2014:  1-4 loss at Dick's Sporting Goods Park

30 August 2014:  0-1 loss at Seattle Sounders

The Basic Statistics

Games Played Win Loss Draw Points Goals For Goals Against Shots Shots on Goal
Colorado Rapids 7 4 2 1 13 7 5 99 40
Seattle Sounders 6 2 3 1 7 6 7 78 27

Super Early Initial Thoughts

Until the shock win in Seattle last summer the Rapids had lost six in a row to the Sounders and more than a few of those losses were severe.  The Rapids simply struggle to defeat the Sounders and in the entirety of the series the Rapids have defeated the Sounders just three times.  To say this game is going to be anything but a battle would be foolhardy.  Seattle is a supreme challenge and the Rapids will need to be at their best.

However, this year things seem to be different, at least in the early goings in MLS.  The Rapids are playing good soccer and have a good deal of confidence coming off back-to-back big time wins.  This is a match where they clearly feel like they can defeat the Sounders, and with good reason.  The Rapids have a very good defense and Seattle is by and large struggling getting shots off.  If the Rapids are able to slow down some of the quality attackers that the Sounders have, it is very realistic to see the Rapids picking up their fifth win.

There is a caveat with this though: the Sounders are due a big win this year and as I have mentioned, they have the Rapids number historically and most definitely over the last seven games:  The Rapids are 1-6-0 with a -11 goal difference.  This is something that cannot be ignored and if the Rapids are not prepared for this one, it could be a long night in Commerce City.