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Game 23: Playing the Impact at home

Neither team has had a great run lately - who will grab three points in Commerce City?

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

After a brief trip to California to play the San Jose Earthquakes, the Colorado Rapids are back home to take on the visiting Montreal Impact.

The Impact are currently in an uncomfortable position. They sit just above the red line in the Eastern Conference, ahead of New England Revolution but with a lower PPG average than both the Revs and Toronto FC, who is currently in eighth place. They are also hoping to steal a crucial three points on Saturday night as they try to solidify their placement.

But, Montreal has had a pretty rough run of form recently. In the last five games, they lost four in a row before a miracle win against Philadelphia 4-0 at home. After 24 games, they have a -7 goal differential, which is the worst of any team currently in playoff contention. Plus, short of Atlanta, they also have the most losses on the road of any team above the redline too.

The Impact have been messing around with their formation a little in the last few games, playing in a 4-3-3, 3-4-3, and 4-4-2. Their roster includes former Rapid Michael Azira, who I’m sure a lot of Rapids fans miss dearly. Their DPs are long-time Impact player Ignacio Piatti and newcomer French/Algerian winger Saphir Taider, on loan from Bologna in the Italian league. The team has scored 31 goals and allowed 38, both on the bad side of average.

The last few games for the Rapids have been disappointing. Losing to the Earthquakes was nothing to be ashamed of by itself, but this means we have gone four games in a row without a win. On top of the controversial loss against NYCFC, it is time we get back on the winning train. It has become nearly impossible for us to get into the playoffs this year, but that just gives us an opportunity to start showing what we have for 2020.

Controversial opinion here, but at this point in the year, I’d say normally it is now time to say screw results and start doing the whole #PlayTheKids thing. This year, I feel the opposite. I think these next few games are going to be a turning point. It is possible that we get three or even six points out of the next two, and all of a sudden our playoff dreams might be possible.

On the other hand, we could also lose both and go back to the run of form that we started this year with. That’s part of the fun of MLS—you never know what’s going to happen, in a single season or year-by-year. Let’s get excited for the game and see another three points before some fireworks!