Friday, August 05, 2011

The Home Stand Continues

Kansas City continues their extended home stand tomorrow when they'll take on the Seattle Sounders at LIVESTRONG Sporting Park. The Wizards are almost to the halfway point of the extended home stand, this game is the 4th of the 9 game stretch. Seattle comes into the weekend match up against Sporting KC for their 4th game in an 11 day stretch. Seattle had a league game sandwiched between two games to qualify for the group stage of the CONCACAF Champion's League. For much of those games Seattle has been putting out a good portion of their first team. And on Wednesday night, Seattle went to extra time to advance past San Francisco FC. Combine that with the heat and Seattle could see some changes.

Kansas City continued their long unbeaten run with a nice 2-0 win over Real Salt Lake at LSP on Wednesday, extending their team record run. KC will have to make at least one adjustment to their lineup from Wednesday night, they'll have to replace defensive midfielder Roger Espinoza, who had arguably been the teams best, most consistent player over the past 3 games. Even with that, he was playing his best game of the year before his red card against RSL. Peter Vermes isn't going to be able to make a straight switch in the lineup as no player on the bench and replace what Espinoza brought to the game in tenacity both offensively and defensively. The responsibility to take his spot in the lineup will likely fall to Birahim Diop, who will likely sit deeper than Espinoza does. The other interesting question will be if Teal Bunbury keeps his starting spot after his second goal in as many games, or if CJ Sapong gets back into the lineup.

Harrington - Cesar - Besler - Sinovic
Jeferson - Diop - Zusi
Kamara - Bunbury - Bravo

Number to Remember - 1 - That's the number of wins KC has against Seattle since they've come into the league. That was the first game the two teams ever played in MLS, where KC won on the blast from Davy Arnaud. Also every game the two teams have played have been decided by just one goal.

Key Match Up - Jeferson vs Osvaldo Alonso - The Brazilian DP has looked hot and cold so far for KC this season, and will go up against one of the better defensive mids in the league tomorrow in the Cuban defector, Alonso. KC needs production from their latest DP, but he's going to have to be on his game tomorrow.

PREDICTION - In the back of my mind I thought Salt Lake would be the ones to end the unbeaten run, and in the back of my mind I feel the Seattle is going to do that tomorrow. But the other part of me thinks that the number of games that Seattle's first team has played lately could be catching up with them soon. Combine that with the heat and KC could very well be in a situation like they were against Salt Lake. Come out quick like they did against Salt Lake and KC could grab themselves another 3 points. I have a feeling we could see this ending as a draw though.

SKC - 1 (Bunbury)
SEA - 1 (Montero)

No comments: