Match Preview and Stupid Prediction: San Jose v Colorado
Benjamin breaks down todays game against the Quakes
Benjamin Kowalsky
May 1st 2010

Hello Bulldogs!

As you are no doubt aware, our Colorado Rapidshave ventured out into San Jose to take on the Quakes. Just before theyget going, I wanted to post a few thoughts pre-game so were all on thesame page. Number One: We want the Rapids to win. That should beobvious. Do we think that they CAN win?

Well, it certainly would set a new precedent.

For somereason, the Clash (I mean, the Quakes) are like Rapids-Kryptonite.Historically speaking, the Rapids do not beat the Quakes, and the reasonwhy seems to elude pretty much everyone (probably even the Quakes),because,on paper, they are a team that we ought to be beating. Noquestion.

If we win THIS match, were going to be a hard team to ignore. If wedraw, while not a BAD result (and possibly the most likely based onprecedent), we need to show that we can perform top class every week.Thats the big deal. If we get a hard fought draw, then the Rapids aregoing to turn some more heads. If we lose... well... Good for theQuakes, I guess? All I know is that were going to be hearing a lot ofpeople saying "OH TYPICAL RAPIDS!!!" and sort of rolling their eyes.Non-Rapids fans will also probably say "I told you so" as well.

So whats the X Factor in this match for San Jose?

BobbyConvey.

Remember that. If Convey is on, Colorados chance ofvictory shrinks drastically. And typically, he is on at home. Since heplays down the wings, were going to have to hope that our full backscan take care of him and that our center backs can deal with the crossesthat hes no doubt going to be putting through.

Now, Gary Smith is in an enviable position in terms of the kind ofgames he can play. The depth we put on during last year and the offseason make for a team which Smith can customize to the situation. Thequestion defensively, for me, is "Baudet or Wynne"? If I was forced toguess.... My guess is Baudet gets the start for center back, Wynne outat full back. Reason: Wynne can run down Convey, Baudet can cut out thecross.

Like I said, I could be wrong.

The battle for our offense isgoing to be between Ike Opara and Omar Cummings, which is going to beexciting. Ike Opara is having a stellar rookie year for the Quakes,having already scored two goals as a defender. This is going to be areal test for him, if Cummings is played out more wide like we saw lasttime against the Revs, Opara is going to have to fight to contain theJamaican at every turn. Cummings has become more dangerous as both acreator and a finisher.

But even if Ike Opara is successful, that still leaves Casey, who isstarving for that goal from open play. Look for him and Joe Cannon togo at it. And Mehdi is going to want to continue the form we saw back inRevs. Maybe this time the universe will be fair and let his greatbicycle kicks go in this time!

As far as a guess at the formation tonight? Id guess that Smith isgoing to use much the same line-up as we saw against the Revs, as itworked so well for us.

Conor

Colin/Wells       Mehdi/Lopez/Quincy       Omar

Pablo       Jeff


Danny/Kos        Drew        Beast/Wynne       Wynne/Kos

 

I dont know who is ultimately going to get the start, but this is my best guess.

Alright Bulldogs! Im out of here.

Country Roads, take me home....

 

--
Cheers!

 

UPDATE:
Ike Opara may have school commitments which prevent him from attendingthe game. Steve Beitashour also may not be there. Rapids prospects haveimproved offensively, but our defensive worries (Convey) stay the same.

Well have to see how this turns out, but thank the Soccer Gods for Finals Week.

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