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30Oct/11Off

Two and Two: 1st Leg Rapids – Sporting (Playoffs Edition)

SKC-Playoffs-mini

This was the 4th and final game of the 1st Leg games and much like the other 1st leg games it did not disappoint. Colorado Rapids the defending MLS Cup champions who have been hit with some major injury bug lately and played just Thursday in a wildcard game. Sporting who at one point 10 games into the season where in last place and could use help anywhere. Well obviously they got it turned around and have been looking amazing.

RAPIDS
- Not the same team as last year. Quite literally though. Rapids are missing three of there key players including Connor Casey their main goal scorer. They were able to make it past Columbus Crew pretty easily, but it was Wild Card game and Sporting has definitely fought their way into their current position and is not going to just give up now. Sporting knows this and was looking to come in and dominate a team that has had a rough end of season, and will probably be getting ready to exit

- Played decent for having just had another playoff game Thursday. I will say though that even if they did play a pretty relaxed game on Thursday it is a playoff game and that usually means that tension and stress are running extremely high. So to come out and play as well as Colorado did in the first half was pretty impressive. They didn't really attach much, but that is just what Sporting has been making teams do lately. Sporting pushes teams back on their heels and forces them to have a good counter attack which is something that Colorado just seemingly doesn't have with three of their key players gone now.

SPORTING
- Needs to watch the possibly counter attack more. Defense seemed to keep pushing more and more until Sporting got that first goal and if they are not careful then they could easily get blown wide open on a counter attack from a better playoff caliber team. Like a Houston Dynamo team.

- Definitely seem to realize that this is the playoffs. At the same time though Sporting almost seemed to play the same way that they have been playing with the exception of switching back to a 4-3-3 formation after having been using a 4-5-1 in the last several games. Regardless it worked and Sporting came out firing on all cylinders and more importantly on the road where the games don't mean more, but at the same time they mean everything. Kansas City came into this game looking to dominate and get out of Colorado and get read for the 2nd leg game back in Kansas City in what should be a packed house, which is something I can't say for a couple of the other games that I have seen so far.

McBeth

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