September 4, 2012
Soccer News Net staff
A look at the upcoming games
Columbus Crew (12-8-6, 42 pts)@ New England Revolution (6-14-7, 25 pts), 7:00 pm CT (FSO, CSNNE)
The Columbus Crew have not lost to the New England Revolution since 2009, and are currently being lifted up the Eastern Conference table by torrid play from newcomers Federico Higuain and Jairo Arrieta, both of whom scored twice to help Columbus rally from two goals down to nip New England 4-3 on August 25. The Revs, meanwhile, are mired in a club-record ten-game winless streak going into Wednesday night’s showdown at Gillette Stadium. The Revolution frontline will be thin – leading scorer Saer Sene is lost for the season with a torn ACL, and DP Jerry Bengtson is on national team duty for Honduras. Injuries also forced a backline shakeup for last Saturday’s scoreless draw with Philadelphia, sidelining Chris Tierney and AJ Soares, sending Kevin Alston to left back and bringing Darrius Barnes and Flo Lechner into the lineup. There’s a lot at stake for the Crew on Wednesday. A win would move them from fifth to third place in the MLS East, at least pending the outcome of Thursday’s match between Houston and Real Salt Lake. Columbus are coming off a 2-1 home win over Montreal on Saturday, their fourth straight victory. Higuain found Chad Marshall with a free kick for the 1-1 equalizer, then set up Emilio Renteria for the stoppage-time winner.
Portland Timbers (7-13-6, 27 pts)@ Colorado Rapids (8-17-2, 26 pts), 8:00 pm CT (NBCSN)
The Portland Timbers and Colorado Rapids complete their home-and-home set Wednesday night at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park. Last Friday, Bright Dike’s second goal of the season gave the Timbers a 1-0 win at Jeld-Wen Field, lifting them out of the Western Conference cellar at the expense of the slumping Rapids, who are winless in their last four, and have only one victory in their last 11 games. Friday also gave the Timbers their first two-game winning streak of the year. Wednesday, they will be gunning for their first road win. The Rapids will be without veteran striker Omar Cummings, on national team duty with Jamaica.