Columbus Crew SC-Colorado Rapids: MLS Match Preview

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Columbus Crew SC travel to Mile High as they take on the Colorado Rapids in an East versus West showdown. Columbus is hauling a 3-0 win over 2016 MLS Cup Champions, Seattle Sounders under their belt. The Rapids are also bringing a 1-0 win with them over Sporting Kansas City to this matchup. But Columbus seems to have the upper hand.

Columbus Crew SC-Colorado Rapids: MLS Match Preview

After being handed a 5-0 loss by Canadian counterparts Toronto FC, Columbus needed to get back in the win column. They did just that after defeating Seattle at home this past Wednesday. Goals from Federico Higuain, Justin Meram, and Ola Kamara helped lift the Black and Gold to their win. Zack Steffen came up huge with four saves and earned a clean sheet. Keep in mind, Seattle was out Jordan Morris and Clint Dempsey. Both are with the United States Men’s National team for World Cup Qualifier matches.

Their opposition, the Colorado Rapids, are barely making it so far this season. With 10 points in 12 games so far this season, Colorado currently sit in last place in the Western Conference. The Rapids are currently without keeper Tim Howard who is with the National Team. The Rapids are also without star players Axel Sjoberg and Jared Watts, who are doubtful with injuries.

Key Players

Who will shine in this matchup? Well, for Crew SC, there’s Federico Higuain, who became just the third member in club history to join the 40/40 club (40 goals, 40 assists). The Argentine midfielder is the playmaker when it comes to starting an attack. You also have Iraq native Justin Meram. Meram has been on a goal spree. Scoring his first career hat-trick against Montreal a few weeks ago, he has now tied his career best with eight goals with his rocket shot during the Seattle match. These two will cause hefty problems to the Rapids backline.

For Colorado, they have Shkelzen Gashi and Dominique Badji. If Crew SC can throw out a sturdy back line (The Mensah, Williams pairing this past match was phenomenal by the way) Columbus could keep the Colorado off of the scoreboard the whole 90 minutes. But then again, Columbus is a team that can’t finish games.

Predicted Lineups

The predicted lineup for Columbus Crew SC will probably follow from their last match.

Steffen;

Raitala–Mensah–Williams–Jimenez

Artur–Trapp

Meram–Higuain–Finlay

Kamara

The predicted lineup for Colorado will see some changes.

MacMath;

Hairston–Ford–Williams–Miller

Gashi–Azira–Powers–Saeid

Badji–Doyle

Prediction

Although Columbus has the most momentum coming into this match, they need to play a 90-minute game. Not 45. Colorado is looking to get out of the basement, but the struggle is real.

Columbus Crew SC 2-0 Colorado Rapids

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