The Rapids enter a huge game tomorrow night. It has Must Win written all over it. After only one point in the last three games, a home win against a Kenny Cooper-less Dallas is surely that. The team will not want to go away to DC next week with anything less than three points tomorrow night. Personnel for tomorrow? As much as everyone wants Omar Cummings to do well for Jamaica in the Gold Cup, Rapids fans could have at least one selfish eye on his national team crashing out of the competition tonight. Having already lost the first two games, that is a distinct possibility. According to Gary Smith, Omar is expected to start tonight in Jamaica's final round robin game against El Salvador. If they are eliminated, Smith is hoping he can play some role tomorrow night against Dallas. "The reality is he would be a sub," Smith said. "We'll just see how he is when he turns up." Barring that, the only other major change from last weekend will be the absence of a suspended Cory Gibbs. Scott Palguta looks likely to get the nod in central defense.
Three people who will not be playing are new signing, Julien Baudet, and likely newcomers Facundo Diz and Jamie Smith. Baudet, nicknamed Dolph by his teammates for his enormous frame (big thanks to Chris Sharpe for that one), is not eligible until July 15. Diz will likely be at DSG Park tomorrow but in a suit. He's probably two weeks of training away from being considered, Smith said. Jamie Smith, a former Celtic player with Steve Guppy, is "not yet on the roster," according to the Rapids. He looks highly likely to be on it soon, however. "He's quick and he's got a good engine," coach Smith said today.
With these three signings, I make that a top heavy roster by two spots. Ciaran O'Brien in midfield and Mike Holody in defense, both players currently out on loan, would appear to be the most likely ones released to make way for them. Game time tomorrow is 7.30pm.