Match previews / Union

Match preview: Colorado Rapids vs Philadelphia Union

Photo: Marjorie Elzey 

Who: Philadelphia Union vs. Colorado Rapids

What: MLS Regular Season

Where: Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, Commerce City, Colorado

When: Saturday May 13th, 9:30pm eastern

Watch: Apple TV+

Whistle: REF: Victor Rivas; AR1: Jeremy Hanson; AR2: Ben Pilgrim; 4TH: Chris Elliott; VAR: Younes Marrakchi; AVAR: Joshua Patlak

After a disappointing exit from the US Open Cup on Tuesday night, the Philadelphia Union are looking to hit the ground running again in league play. Following their dismissal from Champions League by LAFC the week prior, the Union answered with a win at rivals New York Red Bull. They’ll be looking for their second consecutive bounce-back road victory in league play Saturday night.

Unlike the Union, Colorado was able to claim victory in the Open Cup Tuesday night and are now looking to put together a home win streak after easily beating LA Galaxy 3-1 last weekend.

Scouting report: Colorado Rapids

The Rapids have not been off to the best start of their 2023 MLS season. The club holds a record of 2-6-3 and currently sits 10th in the Western Conference. To add insult to injury for the Rapids, they still have not captured their first home win in those 11 games.

Scoring goals has been a constant problem for the Rapids this year, with Michael Barrios and Kevin Cabral leading the team – both having scored just twice this season. Barrios has been used more as a sub of late, while Cabral is usually given the start. Feeding the strikers for Colorado is MLS veteran Diego Rubio, who’s collected 3 assists this year.

In midifield the Rapids support a flat four with former Union man Keegan Rosenberry filling in on the right side. Union fans will know Rosenberry as a threat offensively as well as defensively. In the middle are Connor Ronan and Ralph Priso-Mbongue who provide defensive cover.

A back 3 of Danny Wilson, Andreas Maxso and Lalas Abubakar have proven to be somewhat inconsistent, but can put in a strong outing. William Yarbrough will be in net for the Rapids.

Injury report: Out: Jack Price, Cole Basset, Abraham Rodriguez. Questionable: Bryan Acosta, Steven Beitashour.

Suspension report:  None

Scouting report: Philadelphia Union

Another week, another competition the Philadelphia Union come crashing out of.

The silver lining to their Open Cup and Champions League defeats could be that the Union can now put full resources into MLS play. The team didn’t get off to a great start this season, but are looking to build momentum off a 1-0 win over New York Red Bull. Julian Carranza and Mikael Uhre will look to get going again, as both have been quiet in recent weeks. Daniel Gazdag scored the lone goal last week, and currently leads the league in assists with 7.

The Union midifield continues to be a puzzle with the health of Jose Martinez and a lack of depth rotation. Alejandro Bedoya will likely feature, with a combination of either Leon Flach, Jack McGlynn, José Martínez and Andres Perea. Jim Curtin will need to find chemistry in the midfield again for the Union to make another run.

Kai Wagner recently returned from injury to bringn Philadelphia close in the Open Cup, but questions remain at right back and center back. Olivier Mbazio has been a favorite but has seen mistakes cut into playing time as Nathan Harriel pushes for starts. Damian Lowe is looking for his own bit of playing time while Jack Elliott has struggled early in the season.

Injury report: Questionable: Jose Martinez

Suspension report:  None

Key matchup: Fitness 

Colorado has been hit with the injury bug hard this season, while the Union have played many more games than their counterparts. Does more playing time help or hurt the Union in the altitude of Colorado?

Player to watch: Mikael Uhre

Uhre had one great game this season, in which he scored a hat trick. The Union will be looking for more consistency from their DP striker though. Uhre at times looks lost on the field and just hasn’t been finishing chances. The Union need to get him going if they have championship hopes.

Prediction:  Philadelphia Union 2-1 Colorado Rapids 

A back and forth thriller provides 3 goals as Daniel Gazdag nets the winner.

Philadelphia = +170
Colorado = +160
Draw = +210


  1. Another team we cannot afford to play down to their level… like so many so far this season.



    PS: Please do not wear the SoCal Surfer kit. PLEASE.

  2. Just out of curiosity does anyone know their record with that kit compared to their dress blues?

    • Been trying to lighten up all the angst associated with this year’s underperformance… blame some-thing rather than some-one, individually or collectively!

      I think the ‘away’ record reflects SoCal Surfer kit record, or close.

      SCORE, WIN

  3. Deez Nuggs says:

    I’m not laying the blame entirely on the new beige kit. The reason why the Union were so good last year compared with the struggle this year is clearly that they got rid of the lightning bolt kit.

  4. Sean, you’re on it again…Uhre. I’m already calling him a bust, and I’d love him to prove me wrong. It’s time for him to produce or we need to move on.
    . . .
    Related, I was as much Burke critic and fan given his strengths and weaknesses, but I’d like to see an offensive substitute option.

    • Deez Nuggs says:

      Uhre is not a bust, my friend. Far from it. Last year he had 13 goals. Which is a solid season. His goals per 90 last year was 0.72. Actually better than Gazdag’s. Muktar took golden boot at a 0.73 pace.
      This year so far Uhre has 5 league goals. Tied for 5th in the league. His pace is 0.74 goals per 90. Better than last year.

  5. FCdelcofella says:

    Not seeing a win. Maybe 0-0 or 1-0 rapids.
    Team hasn’t impressed all year. Wins have been ugly. Somethings just not clicking….maybe it’s attitude. That bale goals still haunts this team and I can’t blame them. It’s gonna take a JM or a pep or a klopp….. a true winner and leader to fix the mentality of the team. Sorry

    • No apology…
      right on.

      On field leadership this year MIGHT be to blame… but I personally think last year was ‘miraculous’, to be savored… and this year, disjointed, sour.

      Score, Win… Doop!

      • santo bevacqua says:

        on field leadership falls on bedoya he is the captain, he maybe declining because of age; but miracles are not easy to come by.

  6. Player to watch: uhre, I mean waldo

  7. What happened to Uhre? Not in the 20

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