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Rapids schedule exhibition match in Memphis in September... why?

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Because Tim Howard is an advisor for the Memphis USL side.

MLS: Colorado Rapids at Montreal Impact Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

The Colorado Rapids announced today that they would be going to Memphis to play the Tulsa Roughnecks FC on Saturday, September 1st. The Roughnecks are 1-9-8 with just 12 points. USL Memphis was awarded a franchise earlier this year in January and their inaugural season will be 2019, so they will be unveiling their new logo during the exhibition match.

To recap: The Rapids are going to Memphis on a bye week to play a USL side in a Minor League Baseball stadium and it’s not even the hometown team because the hometown team doesn’t have a team yet.

Why?

“Rapids Goalkeeper Tim Howard, a Memphis resident and USL Memphis advisor since its unveiling in January, will lead the Rapids in goal for this special exhibition match.” [Read the full press release here.]

“I’m incredibly excited to play a soccer match in my adopted hometown of Memphis, Tennessee,” said Howard. “We’re looking forward to a terrific reception and a raucous environment for all involved.”

I get that there is no chance for the playoffs, but this is still a little confusing to me. It sounds an awful lot like the entire team is heading across the country to play a game that doesn’t mean anything to support the interests of one player. Or maybe it’s just a friendly during a bye week and a good opportunity for younger players to get some minutes.

I’ve asked the Rapids for a comment and will add more info. if/when I get it.