The Whitecaps at Rapids preview for Sunday, September 19th from Dicks Sporting Goods Park in Denver Colorado. The Rapids sit comfortably in 3rd place in the Major League Soccer Western Conference standings while the Whitecaps are battling towards the playoff line in 9th place.
The Whitecaps (7-8-8 and 29 points) are coming off a tough 1-0 loss at home to the Portland Timbers. An own goal from Ranko Veselinovic was the only scoring as the 10 matches unbeaten streak came to an end. It was only the second time Vancouver has been held off the score sheet in the last 9 matches and the first time since starting Designated Player Ryan Gauld. It was also the first loss for interim head coach Vanni Sartini.
The Rapids (12-4-7 and 43 points) are also coming off a match against the Portland Timbers. A mid-week clash that saw the two teams play to a 2-2 draw at Providence Park. Portland went down to 10 men in the first half when Bill Tuiloma was shown his second yellow card and sent off. Jonathan Lewis would open the scoring for the Rapids in the 64th minute but the teams would trade goals.
Michael Barrios would score the second goal for Colorado in the 87th minute but Sebastian Blanco would equalize in extra time. It will be a quick turnaround for Robin Fraser and the squad with just 3 days off between matches.
Lineup News And Notes For Whitecaps at Rapids Preview
The Whitecaps at Rapids preview will see Vancouver almost back to full availability. Caio Alexandre is out for the rest of the season and won’t be available. Cristian Gutierrez suffered some setbacks with his injury this week and will not be an option for Santini. Erik Godoy is also unavailable after not training on Saturday.
The good news is everyone else will be ready to go for head coach Vanni Sartini. All of the players are back from the international break and jake Nerwinski is back fit and ready to go. Look for Lucas Cavallini to get back in the up top as the Canadian is back from International duty. Cristian Dajome and Ryan Gauld will most likely play the wings in a 4-3-3. formation.
Janio Bikel, Michael Baldisimo, and Leonard Owusu would be my prediction for the 3 in the midfield for the Whitecaps at Rapids preview. With Erik Godoy out we should see Florian Jungwirth and Ranko Veselinovic at center back. Jake Nerwinski and Javain Brown could flank them as we saw before the injury to Jake and Brown leaving for the Jamaica National Team. Maxime Crepeau didn’t get a start for Canada so should be ready to go Sunday night against the Rapids.
Head coach Robin Fraser will look to field a similar lineup to the midweek match against the Portland Timbers. The Rapids will try and keep pace with Seattle and Kansas City atop the MLS Western Conference. William Yarbrough will look to add to his 9 clean sheets for the season between the sticks. We should see another 3-4-2-1 from Fraser this week with Auston Trusty, Danny Wilson in the middle, and Keegan Rosenberry rounding out the back three.
Kellyn Acosta should slot back into the midfield for the Rapids which would be his 190th MLS appearance. Look for Jack Price, Mark-Anthony Kaye, and Braian Galvan to join him in the midfield back 4. Cole Bassett and always dangerous Andre Shinyashiki will look to provide service to either Jonathan Lewis or Michael Barrios at striker.
Sports Talk Line And The Vancouver Whitecaps
After their winning streak and unbeaten streak were snapped Vancouver is once against hunting for a playoff spot. They will look to start a new streak against the Colorado Rapids but it won’t be easy playing at altitude. The home side will try and keep their unbeaten streak intact. They haven’t lost in 9 straight matches and 10 straight at Dicks Sporting Goods Park.
The Whitecaps vs Rapids gets underway at 6:00 pm PST Sunday night. Vancouver will try and get back into the win column and Sports Talk Line will have you covered all match long. Make sure to check out the Sports Talk Line website for all of the latest after the Caps take on the Rapids.
Be sure to follow me on Twitter @JoshuaGriffith0 for all the latest news and notes before, during, and after the match. Be sure to stay tuned for a full match recap including “The Unnamed Moments Of The Match”, post-game quotes from the team, and much more.