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Home needs to be sweet

August 4, 2011 | 6:14 am No comments
By Shaun Schafer

With Colorado running out of MLS home dates — only four remain after Friday — The Thursday List turns its attention to the Rapids success at home and on the road.

Home hasn't been that kind to the Colorado Rapids this season, as the expression on Jeff Larentowicz face indicates during a home loss to the LA Galaxy. (Photograph by Jonathan Ingraham/ColoradoSoccerNow.com)

First, let’s take a look at MLS team records on the road this season. We begin with wins on the road out of total road matches played, through Wednesday.

Team Wins/Matches
1. LA Galaxy 6/13
2. FC Dallas 4/10
2. DC United 4/10
2. Seattle Sounders 4/12
2. Colorado 4/12
6. Philadelphia 3/10
6. Columbus 3/11
6. Sporting KC 3/14
9. Real Salt Lake 2/8
9. Chivas USA 2/10
9. San Jose 2/10
12. Portland 1/10
12. Chicago 1/12
12. New York 1/12
12. New England 1/12
16. Houston 0/10
16. Toronto FC 0/12
16. Vancouver 0/12

Only one team, the LA Galaxy has more road wins (6) than the Rapids (4) this season. Of the three teams tied with Colorado on road wins, only DC United trails the Rapids in the league standings.

Next, we look at home wins out of total home matches. Again, the records include Wednesday’s MLS matches.

Team Wins/Matches
1. FC Dallas 8/13
2. Real Salt Lake 7/12
3. LA Galaxy 6/11
3. Seattle Sounders 6/11
3. Columbus 6/11
3. Portland 6/12
3. Houston 6/12
8. Philadelphia 5/11
8. New York 5/11
10. Colorado 4/12
10. Chivas USA 4/12
10. Sporting KC 4/8
13. New England 3/10
13. Toronto FC 3/12
13. San Jose 3/12
16. DC United 2/10
16. Vancouver 2/10
18. Chicago 1/9

Looking at these two lists together, several pictures start to emerge. First, Sporting KC had no fun playing so many games on the road waiting for a new home field to open in Kansas City, Kan. Second, Toronto FC has been wretched on the road, Chicago Fire has been wretched at home, and the expansion Vancouver Whitecaps haven’t had succes anywhere.

In addition, the LA Galaxy owns the best record in the league by being tough at home and outstanding on the road. Real Salt Lake, which has suffered from a CONCACAF Champions League hangover since losing in the final, is in great shape to charge to the top of the table.

And for Rapids fans, the two charts provide proof that the team has been one of the best travelers in the league. Unfortunately, Colorado has had a tough time at home. Those home shortfalls are something to keep in mind as the playoff race tightens in September and October, months when Colorado has a total of three games at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.

Colorado, a team tied for second in the league in road wins, wears the uncomfortable crown of being a team — 10th in the league in home wins — that struggles to put away opponents at home.

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