Tuesday, September 2, 2008

If It's Thursday, It Must Be Dallas

Crikey! Didn't we just play a game? The Colorado Rapids have a very quick turnaround this week and will be off tomorrow for the game on Thursday night against Dallas. Unfortunately, that gives me no time to get up to training due to work commitments to suss out camp mood and get an idea of the line-up. Most of you are pretty depressed about the latest defeat away at Real Salt Lake. The Reserves fared no better the following day when they were thumped 4-0, all the goals in the first half. Clearly, things aren't working too well. Unfortunately, the Rapids are hamstrung, literally, by some major injuries. Terry Cooke and Pablo Mastroeni are still recovering from their hamstring problems and will not make the trip, at least according to the Rapids website. It wouldn't surprise me, however, if Pablo did at least get on the bench. That may be a bit ambitious but he appears a lot further along with the healing process than does Cooke. Mehdi Ballouchy and Ugo Ihemelu are still listed as out with concussions but I am trying to find out how updated that injury list is. Ugo, at least, was on the verge of making the trip to Salt Lake last week. In terms of international call-ups, Bouna Coundoul is in Senegal right now before the national team flies off for its World Cup qualifying game against Algeria on Friday. Omar Cummings does not appear to have made it into the Jamaican team for its games against Mexico and Honduras. The Reggae Boyz have had to switch their weekend game against Mexico to Mexico City after Hurricane Gustav damaged the national stadium in Kingston, Jamaica.
So, what does that leave? You can't really make radical changes when so many people are out injured or are unavailable. But changes need to be made. Desperate times call for drastic measures. Surely, Christian Gomez must start and Kosuke Kimura deserves his chance. Tom McManus should maybe start upfront with Conor Casey. Thoughts?
INJURY UPDATE: According to the Rapids' press office, Pablo and Terry Cooke are listed as probable so they may play a small part in the game. Ihemelu, Greg Dalby and Ballouchy are all described as questionable.


Scott said...

I am still trying to figure out what in the world is wrong with C. Gomez that he has had the string of bench appearances. I would certainly like to see McManus up top but I fear that our midfield will not help produce any good chances. Oh thank God there is no relegation in this league! (not that this gives away my current thoughts on how things will end this season)

johncos said...

If we had relegation we might actually have a reason to watch... I think relegation is just what the MLS needs. I am a huge fan but I can hardly get myself to pay attention anymore. I can't believe I was enticed to send in my season ticket renewal right after the KC game and the chance to see the US men's National Team!

Nick Thomas said...

Maybe you are right John. If we had relegation, we would be worried about every game in the run-in. Instead, we are still hoping for a miracle to get to the playoffs but, in reality, this looks unlikely and barely deserved. More realistically, unless we win this week, each subsequent game could just become irrelevant. Why couldn't some of the USL teams be fighting for promotion while the bottom MLS teams strive to avoid relegation?

Scott said...

I am not entirely sure how relegation works elsewhere, but what if there was a playoffs of sorts between the top couple of USL team and the bottom couple of MLS teams? I think that would be a system that the US public would like and might actually keep people interested. We are so absorbed by the playoffs and we love the cinderella story so much. The only system that does not do this is the top division of College American Football but there is a strong contingent that thinks there should be a playoff there as well.

Nick Thomas said...

Playoffs could work. The important thing would be to have some kind of threat hanging over teams at the bottom so they would play every game as if it mattered. The only question I have right now is the structure of MLS and USL clubs. Are USL clubs ready to go fully professional and make the step up just as would MLS owners ever contemplate having to go down to a lower level? There is so much at stake in financial terms. If you are relegated in Europe, you at least are still fully professional unless you go down to Non-League status from League 2 in England. It happens there every year, however, showing that it is possible. A good debate to have.

George said...

tom mcmanus starting? what are my thoughts? hell, yeah! those are my thoughts!
George Tanner
FC Rocky
(unabashed mcmanus fan)