Philadelphia Union Vs Colorado Rapids: Match Preview

The last time these two teams met, Philadelphia threw away a two-goal lead to the Rapids. After that, the teams went in down two completely separate routes. The Union collected a solid 23 points over their remaining 15 games while Colorado earned a grand total of… 5 points over 17. Not very often you raise your eyebrows at a statistic for negative reasons!

But with a new season comes a renewed sense of hope and possibility. If it wasn’t for a surge of injuries to the defenders in Colarado, then the Rapids may have actually been able to close out Mastroeni’s season in a respectable way. Over the final 14 games they conceded 12 goals, not bad but certainly anything but good.

However, with the back four reformed, Colorado may prove to be more of a challenge. A few players are returning from injuries but watch out for rookie Axel Sjoberg who will be out to make an impression. Newly acquired right back Michael Harrington will start as Marc Burch is likely to start the year as left back.

In terms of the Union however, The 4-4-2 that Jim Curtin deployed against New York produced a sloppy victory. The Union created a few good chances, that was nothing to the assault New York hit them with. There was a big big sign that without a talented midfielder to set up runs and launch through balls to Sebastien Le Toux and Andrew Wenger, that there was never going to be a counter attack. It was a case of keeping the attackers forward and everyone else back.

CaptureSo, in response to this, expect a one striker formation. Potentially a 4-4-1-1 with Maidana supporting Aristeguieta and playing in a False Nine role. Either that or a 4-5-1 with three players holding the team together in the centre of midfield whilst the two attacking midfielders of Le Toux and Wenger look to ping balls through to the new signing.

Come Saturday, the key factor will be can the likes of Le Toux send enough balls into the cross or will they need to drop deeper and be supported by the Centre Midfield/. Expect a high pressing end to end game. The pace shouldn’t really slow with the amount of pace that the Union have coming into this. The wing backs will be in a much more supporting role in comparison to the flat out defensive role they have played against New York.

Philadelphia have had a solid pre season and with a win over New York to boost their morale, they will enter this season in high spirits. Expect them to target the Centrebacks with the height of Aristguieta being a big advantage. The team should me much more confident with the services of Vitoria aiding their defensive push.

Final Score prediction- Philadelphia 2-0 Colorado