June 13, 2018 / 7:18 AM / 12 days ago

Struggling Rapids set for home tilt vs. Fire

The Colorado Rapids are mired in the worst losing streak in franchise history and have plummeted to the bottom of the MLS standings.

The Rapids attempt to break the eight-game skid on Wednesday night when they host the Chicago Fire at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, Colo.

Colorado (2-9-2) has an MLS-low eight points, and its minus-10 goal differential is tied for second worst in the league. The Rapids have been outscored 19-5 during their skid.

Colorado will be without forward Yannick Boli, who drew a red card in Saturday’s 2-0 loss to Houston Dynamo. Boli shoved Houston’s Leonardo in the face late in the first half to leave his side playing with just 10 men the entire second half.

The silver lining for Rapids coach Anthony Hudson is that his squad isn’t packing it in when it comes to effort.

“The biggest thing is we went down to 10 men and we are on a poor run, a terrible run,” Hudson told reporters, “but what is unbelievable is the players are absolutely giving everything.”

Chicago (5-7-3) has lost just one of its past four matches (2-1-1), but Saturday’s 1-1 tie with the New England Revolution had a disappointing feel to it.

The Fire were leading 1-0 in the 82nd minute when goalkeeper Richard Sanchez fumbled the ball by the right post. New England’s Diego Fagundez was standing right next to Sanchez and fed a wide-open Teal Bunbury for the tying goal.

“It’s painful because I think the majority of the time we controlled the game, not always with the ball, but we controlled in our defensive shape sometimes,” Chicago coach Veljko Paunovic told reporters. “All the effort and the matchups we had on the different positions on the field were great. Huge, huge performance from the team and it hurts a lot when you, obviously, drop two points this way, but it happens and that’s part of the game.”

Chicago will have leading goal scorer Nemanja Nikolic (six) back in the lineup. Nikolic was on the field for just 12 minutes against New England after banging heads with Revolution defender Antonio Mlinar Delamea in a collision.

Midfielder Aleksandar Katai and forward Alan Gordon have four goals apiece as the Fire look to pepper shots at Colorado goalkeeper Tim Howard (two shutouts, 1.58 goals-against average).

Forward Dominique Badji leads the Rapids with five goals, while only one other player (Joe Mason, 2) has more than one.

Sanchez has two shutouts and a 1.83 GAA for the Fire, who are just 3-10-7 when playing in Colorado.

—Field Level Media

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