Mon, 29 Nov 2021

Playoff spot the prize as Rapids take aim at Timbers

Field Level Media
23 Oct 2021, 10:55 GMT+10

After coming within minutes of securing a playoff berth for the second consecutive season, the Colorado Rapids will try again to lock up a spot when they host the Portland Timbers on Saturday night in Commerce City, Colo.

The Rapids (14-6-10, 52 points) had a victory snatched away Wednesday in the latter stages of a 1-1 draw with the Western Conference-leading Seattle Sounders. Colorado has not made the playoffs in back-to-back seasons since 2010-11.

Portland (14-12-4, 46 points) is coming off a stinging, 3-2 road loss at Vancouver on Wednesday during which it squandered a two-goal halftime lead.

Dominique Badji scored Colorado's lone goal in the 66th minute of the match against Seattle. But in the 81st minute, Cristian Roldan leveled the score for the Sounders.

"Points are tight right now, the table is really tight and these are three points that we needed," Badji said. "There wasn't much celebrating (in the locker room), the mood was kind of somber because we know we let one slip."

The Timbers hold fourth place in the West heading into Saturday's matches, but they are one of four teams separated by only three points that currently round out the final playoff seeds in the conference.

"Disappointing for all of us," Portland coach Giovanni Savarese said of the defeat to the Whitecaps. "Disappointing for our fans. Disappointing for the fact that we had the game in our hands the way we played in the first half. We didn't allow them to be able to do anything in the first half, and then we find a way to give the game back to them."

Colorado, which holds third place in the conference, can clinch a playoff berth with a win or the combination of a draw and a loss by Vancouver, Minnesota United or the Los Angeles Galaxy, among other permutations.

Rapids midfielder Jack Price's 12 assists rank third in MLS overall.

Claudio Bravo has been one of Portland's best defenders this season, leading the league with 54 tackles won.

--Field Level Media

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