Tuesday, July 13, 2010

On the Road Again

The Wizards go back on the road again for two road games in 4 days as they play Columbus tomorrow night at Columbus Crew Stadium. Unlike Saturday night when the Wizards played a struggling Chivas USA side, the Crew are on top of the Eastern Conference with 28 points, 16 more than the Wizards. Columbus comes in on the backs of a busy schedule as well, they've been playing two games a week for the past few weeks with league and Open Cup games. This will continue through the weekend as they have a top of the conference clash with New York on Saturday. Those two factors could see the Crew rest a few of their starters in preparation for that match. It will be interesting to see if Guillermo Barros Schelotto, Chad Marshall, and Eddie Gaven all get starts with the big game this weekend.

The Wizards themselves are in a similar situation as they're in the middle of busy stretch, with this being their 2nd of 3 games in 8 days as they'll go straight from Columbus to Colorado for a game on Saturday. It will be interesting to see if the team makes some changes to the lineup with the busy stretch. I don't expect any radical difference (aka I don't expect Sunil Chhetri or Jamar Beasley to make their first MLS appearances), but I could see some more of the guys that come off the bench get more time. For example Graham Zusi and Craig Rocastle I could see getting a start either tomorrow or in Colorado on the weekend. This will be a test of the Wizards depth, which I think people are finding out is not as deep as people expected due to the fact that we haven't seen a whole lot of changes even though the team has struggled.

Harrington - Thomas - Conrad - Espinoza
Arnaud - Auvray - Jewsbury
Kamara - Wolff - Smith

Key Match Up - Josh Wolff vs Chad Marshall - It's hard to pick a specific match up because as I mentioned earlier, there could be some lineup changes, at least for the Crew. With the offense struggling, Josh Wolff really needs to step up and show some veteran leadership offensively. He's enjoyed his time at Crew Stadium since returning to MLS, so we'll see if that continues.

PREDICTION - Even with the possibility of the Crew not dressing their full A-squad I'm not confident in this game at all. The Crew, even without a few of their starters are playing better than the Wizards are. Without their bigger names in the lineup, the Crew have been winning their US Open Cup games as well, so those that would come in have been getting playing time. With the way both teams have played lately, this is an easy win for the Crew. Of course these are the type of games that could bee seen as a "banana peel" game for the Crew. They are in the middle of a busy schedule and have a big game on the weekend against New York, so it's possible that they overlook KC. But I just don't see KC getting enough done on the road to steal all 3 points, or even 1 point.

KC - 0
Columbus - 2 (Lenhart, Gaven)


MOUFWASH said...

well if the key match-up really is Wolff vs. Marshall we are in a world of trouble...

Ky said...

I want to be a good and loyal fan, I really do. BUT THIS IS SO DAMN HARD!!!

I hope to see something positive come from this game. Something, anything just something positive. I am getting tired of hearing the cliche "we controlled the whole game but couldn't find the back of the net." That is nothing more than loser's remorse.....

Moop said...

Response to MOUFWASH:
Ha! Very nice. It's kind of like going to the theater and the best movie they're showing is a anything with Dane Cook in it. You're viewing pleasure isn't going to be so much of a pleasurable experience.

Response to Ky:
Spot on. If we score, I'll be happy. If we tie, I'll be happy. If we get a clean sheet, I'll be happy. People are so tired of "dominating" games, but not getting results. It's not elementary school. Mom and Dad aren't going to congratulate you on your last place, green ribbon for "participating" (or like I said, "dominating").