Sporting Kansas City v Colorado Rapids – MLS
14 Apr 2016, Sporting Park, 00:30 GMT +0
Sporting Kansas City won 2-0 against New York Red Bulls last time out and they have Melia to thank as the goalkeeper pulled off some great saves to keep Sporting in front. The performance at Red Bull Arena was good throughout the team with Dwyer looking strong and taking his goal well. The performance, and with it the win, will send KC into this game full of confidence. The team’s win was their fourth of the season and sent them top of the overall table and the performances across the pitch will give them an edge against Colorado.
Kansas will be without injured Soni Mustivar, Justin Mapp and Paulo Nagamura. Kevin Ellis looks set to join that list after leaving during the first half against New York RB whilst Chance Myers and Matt Besler are also doubtful for the game. Tim Melia is likely to continue in goal with his defence changing slightly to compensate for the injured Ellis. Chance Myers and Amadou Dia will continue on at left back whilst Ike Opara will come in in place of Ellis alongside Nuno Coelho in the centre of defence. In midfield, Lawrence Olum is likely to play just in front of the defence with Benny Feilhaber and Roger Espinoza playing either side of him. The wide positions will probably be occupied by Graham Zusi and Connor Hallisey who impressed at the weekend., whilst Dom Dwyer will keep his place up front with the striker scoring three so far this season.
Colorado Rapids will still be in fairly good spirits despite their loss to Salt Lake City with the team winning two games so far this season. Both of their wins have come at home however and their away form isn’t great with the side only taking one points from nine on the road. Whilst the side isn’t playing badly they need to start scoring more goals. They’ve only conceded three but the lack of goals at the other end means they haven’t been able to turn this defensive domination into points earned and could find themselves in trouble when the defensive situation declines.
The Rapids will be missing Jermaine Jones with the midfielder serving the last game of his suspension. The side will also be missing John Berner, Marlon Hairston Sean St Ledger, Jared Watts and Kevin Doyle, who all have injuries. Zac MacMath will continue on in goal, with the keeper only conceding 3 this season. Eric Miller will carry on at right back with Hairston out with Marc Burch playing at left back. the centre back positions will be occupied by Bobby Burling and Axel Sjoberg who are showing signs of a promising partnership at centre back. In midfield Mike Azira and Sam Cronin playing deep midfield roles behind Dillon Powers. The midfield will be helped by Shkelzen Gashi and Marco Pappa, who will both be vital to keeping the attack potent whilst Luis Solignac will continue to deputise for Kevin Doyle.
Sporting Kansas City will come into the game on a high following the defeat of New York RB. The result was Sporting’s fourth win out of five with the only defeat coming at the hands of Salt Lake City. The win against Red Bulls will reaffirm the belief that Sporting can last the distance and make a big impact. I expect a tough low scoring game, with the home side eventually prevailing against overachieving Colorado.
Prediction 1: Sporting Kansas City to Win
Odds: 1.95 Pinnacle
Prediction 2: Under 2.5
Odds: 1.83 Pinnacle