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Mar 29, 2008 

Rapids Fail To Make A Splash After Another Poor Season

COL
Long-time Rapids midfielder Pablo Mastroeni may lose his temper during a likely lackluster season

COLORADO SEASON PREVIEW

2006 Record: 9-13-8, 35 points (4th place in Western Conference).
Head coach: Fernando Clavijo.
In: Christian Gomez, Jose Burciaga, Jr., Tim Ward.
Out: Nicolas Hernandez, Jose Cancela, Zach Thornton, Tony Sanneh.

Starting Lineup: Bouna Coundoul; Tim Ward, Mike Petke, Jose Burciaga, Jr.; Pablo Mastroeni, Terry Cooke, Colin Clark, Mehdi Ballouchy, Christian Gomez, Herculez Gomez,

Strengths: Former MLS MVP Christian Gomez should improve everyone around him. Terry Cooke and whomever is manning the front will get far more chances than last year's squad.

Weaknesses: The defense and goaltending will misadventures on many occasions last season and the club did nothing to patch up the problem areas. Coundoul showed that he can compete, but not without, scaring the heck out of fans at Dick's Sporting Goods Park. Who is going to put the ball into the other net? Herculez Gomez and Jovan Kirovski could improve on their poor totals, but still leave the team grasping for victories.

Outlook: This is the most disjointed side in MLS. A few teams should be worse than the Rapids, but they have significant upside; Colorado has very little hope for the future and now, with the Christian Gomez trade, they don't have a designated player slot. If you're betting on which coach gets the first pink slip of 2008, laid down a C-note on Clavijo not making it to the All-Star break.

Prediction: 5th in Western Conference.

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