For a while I have tossed around the idea of doing a weekend outlook type of post that has a little FCD talk mixed in with some boarder look at what else is going on in MLS in the upcoming weekend.
We're nearly two months into this season and a lot is still left to be decided as the spring slow turns into the summer. No one has truly stepped out away from the pack on the season either, meaning we're in for a long and crazy ride to the playoffs this fall.
Week 8 has plenty to offer with a double header on Friday night on Univision Deportes, followed up by a trifecta of games on Sunday evening between Fox Sports and ESPN2. Here are some items I'm looking at this weekend.
// FC Dallas vs Colorado //
The return of Diaz - Hearing that Mauro Diaz was even more involved in training this week with the first team is a good sign. But based on what I heard about today's practice before the team set out to Colorado, it sounded like Diaz was taking the bulk of the club's set pieces in training. That should mean he will be back in the starting eleven against the Rapids.
Bekker or Michel? - One thought I have going into this one still centers around who will be in the midfield, even if Diaz doesn't go again in this one. One other nugget that came out of practice was that Kyle Bekker was splitting the set piece duty with Diaz. Normally this is Michel. Maybe this is a grain of salt type of thing but I wouldn't be shocked to see Bekker in the middle with Victor Ulloa.
Intensity - A lot of comments this week about the club has centered around the intensity in training. The link above also talks about how the guys didn't focus at all on the revenge factor that many of us will say they are out to get in this game. it is in their minds sure, but I think it is important to see that they want a result in this one and to really put that embarrassing result behind them once and for all.
Suspensions for Colorado - The MLS Disciplinary Committee came down hard on the Rapids on Thursday, handing Marcelo Sarves a two game suspension for a tackle in last week's loss to Seattle.
// MLS //
Cascadia Cup - The final game of the weekend will be the first meeting of the year between Seattle and Portland up in Washington. Both teams are on a upward motion right now as they are each coming off road wins from last weekend. I'm not sure at all who to root for in this one, a draw would be most favorable for FCD's point of view.
Old Eastern rivals meet in the West. Sporting KC and Houston will get their first meeting against one another as Western Conference foes this weekend. I'm very curious to see how SKC builds off losing Ike Opara in their defense here. He was such a vital piece to their early success this season. Houston on the other hand, they still stink (also, who is ready for next Friday?).
The LA-NY rivalry. The rivalry that isn't technically a rivalry that somehow got made into a rivalry. If that wasn't clear I am talking about the Red Bulls and the Galaxy here. Their only meeting this season is on Sunday as well, during the crazy three game swing that we get to close our weekends out with. NY has been crazy good this season if you haven't seen them play (they remain unbeaten) while LA has started to collect results over the last couple of weeks.