Montreal Impact vs Colorado Rapids : Three Questions with Chris White of the Burgundy Wave

Justin Edmonds

Three Questions is back on Mount Royal Soccer. We preview the game between the Montreal Impact and the Colorado Rapids with Chris White of the Burgundy Wave.

Mountain Time is coming to Montreal and with it the Colorado Rapids. It is the first time that the Western Conference club comes to Stade Saputo. It will be chance to see a young Rapids team that is going a transition period under head coach Oscar Pareja.

I am joined by Chris White, Manager and Head Honcho at the Burgundy Wave, to share his expertise about what's is going on with the Colorado Rapids.

My awesome answers to his awesome questions about the Montreal Impact can be found right .....here.

Sofiane:

Oscar Pareja was supposed to implement a new system and style of play. The club has had a lot of players coming in and out. Including a youth movement and core players coming from the Draft, what is so different from 2012?

Chris aka Head Honcho

The biggest difference is in the depth of the team. They went from a team that had a bunch of players who were probably not fit to play anywhere but NASL next to an overpaid starting XI to a team that has so many solid players, we literally don't know what to do with all of them. The best form the team had this year was during the midst of a crippling injury crisis, but the depth of the team kept the points coming. Oscar Pareja's coaching has evolved and matured quite a bit between the two seasons as well, which has helped prevent quite as many heartbreakers as we saw last year. (Oddly enough, Montreal is one of only two teams that the Rapids were able to beat when the opposition scored a goal last year.)

Sofiane:

Was are the Rapids' most flagrant weakness and biggest strength that an opposing team would know about?

Chris aka Head Honcho

I'd say that the offense as a whole has been the team's biggest weakness. When you have a team composed of mostly 19-23-year-old players, there are probably chemistry and finishing issues to be expected, and we've seen those in spades. Guys like Kevin Harbottle, Deshorn Brown and Tony Cascio have all shown great potential and created great chances, but the team has been absolutely horrid at actually putting the ball in the back of the net. Edson Buddle has been a savior when he's been available, but injuries have kept him from the field most of the season. The defense is also a bit shaky as long as you attack Marvell Wynne, who has quickly gone from a defender of the year candidate under Gary Smith to the weakest link in the chain. One of our best defenders, Shane O'Neill, is just coming back from the USMNT U-20 team and will not be suiting up, so check Wynne in his absence for the best lanes of attack for Di Vaio and the rest. Colorado has leaked seven goals in their last three games, and Wynne has had a hand in at least five of them.

Our greatest strength lies in our midfield. There are few teams who can boast a better spine of players than Hendry Thomas, Dillon Powers and Martin Rivero, who provide brilliant anchor play, linking play and playmaking, respectively. Unfortunately for the Rapids, Rivero has missed quite a bit of time this year, but Powers has done well taking his spot when he has been called into the occasion. Nathan Sturgis has also blossomed into the player he always had the potential to be, but never quite showed with the other teams he has played for. I would expect a Thomas-Sturgis-Powers midfield, which ain't too shabby.

Sofiane

Do you feel that the Rapids will be making a lot of moves during the international transfer window?

Chris aka Head Honcho

I doubt it. Oscar Pareja and the rest of the gang clearly feel that the team that they have right now is the team that they like, so there probably won't be more than a move or two before all is said and done. They don't really have the money to bring in anybody with a big enough name that people would recognize anyway, and their international slots are full to the brim.

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