The champions meet the California team.On Form
Chivas USA: Marcos Mondaini was not quite all the way effective on his MLS debut, but the Argentine showed flashes of brilliance. He was effective in moving the ball around and creating opportunities and nearly put one away in a 3-2 loss to Sporting KC a week ago. As he familiarizes himself with MLS, he'll become more effective and dangerous for Chivas.
Colorado Rapids: Midfielder Jamie Smith helped the Colorado Rapids make a grand entrance into the 2011 season by smashing the ball into the net against Portland Timbers. The humble Scotsman also stepped up as a leader when captain Pablo Mastroeni was subbed out in the second half. In spite of an injury-filled week last week, Jeff Larentowicz came into the match full force and scored the defending champions' first goal of the season. Look for these two steady midfielders to continue contributing to the scoreboard.
Chivas USA: A poor defense might only get poorer. Chivas USA yielded three goals to Sporting KC and now will have to make do without three defenders. Andrew Boyens of New Zealand and Costa Rican Michael Umana are off on national team duty while Zarek Valentin is with the US Under-20s. That leaves a gaping hole that will likely be filled by Seth Owusu, who would be making his MLS debut.
Colorado Rapids: The Colorado Rapids are without two talented players for this upcoming match against Chivas USA. Omar Cummings and Sanna Nyassi were both called up by their national team. This loss will demand that the midfield once again step up with goal scoring plays, and it will give the bench the opportunity to shine.
Chivas USA: Defender Jimmy Conrad said his side was going to be tougher to break down, but that was hardly the case a week ago. The club's biggest asset was set pieces as both goals last week were products of set pieces. The forward line needs to be more productive and needs to be in positions of danger for Chivas to challenge Colorado.
Colorado Rapids: With Cummings in Jamaica, the newest Colorado Rapids player, Caleb Folan, may get his first opportunity to take to a MLS pitch. If he is ready, the former Hull City player may be just what the Rapids need to add another win to their record. The defensive side must be solid, as they face the Chivas USA who proved that in spite of a 2-3 loss to Sporting KC, they are also comfortable scoring numerous goals.
Chivas USA: While their start was not what they wanted, Chivas USA were never going to be too excited or too upset with their opening week result. It's part of the new mentality and mindset the club has entering 2011. Coach Robin Fraser said the focus will be on improving and realizing that there will be setbacks. Losing the season opener may not have been a step forward, but the club showed resiliency and scored some goals, both of which are tremendous positives going forward.
Colorado Rapids: The reigning champions will benefit from their first low-altitude match, hoping to out perform the hosting Chivas USA. Not being in front of the adoring home fans will make the Rapids have to dig deep for this win.
Luis Bueno: Without Cummings around to worry about, Chivas USA have a real opportunity to take some points from this game. What will determine their success is how they manage Colorado's early pressure. If Chivas can keep Colorado in check early on, it could be enough to rattle the Rapids and may lead to Fraser's first points as Chivas' boss.
Stephanie Gardner: Even though the Chivas USA are coming out with a vengeance to get a win at home, the Colorado Rapids are going to showcase their deep bench and take the win. Chivas USA 1-2 Colorado Rapids.
Colorado Rapids head coach Gary Smith talks about upcoming match against Chivas USA.
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