Photo Credit: John A. Babiak @Photog_JohnB

Editorial (January 7, 2018) – The 2018 Major League Soccer season has been released. The Colorado Rapids will open the campaign on March 10 at New England Revolution. Decision Day will be October 28, where the Rapids will host FC Dallas.

Five Colorado Rapids Games to Highlight in 2018

For the full Rapids schedule, click here. For the full league wide schedule, click here. With that, in a 34 game season, here’s five key Colorado Rapids games for the 2018 MLS season:

April 14 vs Toronto FC:

This will be the third competitive meeting between these teams in 2018. They’ll be playing each other before the league season kicks off on CONCACAF Champions League. By April 14, the Rapids will have played four MLS games. They should have their fitness and some tactics sorted out by then. This will be a good (and hopefully less of a rough draft) measuring stick against another team that likes the 3-5-2 with wing backs. Never mind playing the defending MLS Cup Champions.

July 21 at Real Salt Lake:

This will be the second of three Rocky Mountain Cup matches in 2018. The first will be an April 21 game at Real Salt Lake. RSL has owned the Rapids in this competition. They’ve lost the season series just twice since 2007. The last two years haven’t been competitive, with the cup clinched after two games last season. This should be a critical match in if the Rapids want to win back the cup and it will also have Western Conference Playoff implications.

July 28 at D.C. United:

Yes, I’m a sucker for teams playing in new soccer-specific stadiums. D.C. United will be opening Audi Field in 2018. This match will be just their fifth home game of the regular season. These two teams have played to close affairs in recent years. It should be exciting for the Rapids to play their first game in a new stadium. Both teams have gone through transformations over the off-season, adding to the intrigue.

August 18 vs Los Angeles FC:

Again, I’m a sucker for new stadiums. Los Angeles FC will be an expansion team in 2018. They’ll also be opening Banc of California Stadium this year as well. This will be Colorado’s only visit to LAFC of the year. It should be an exciting atmosphere for the team and first look at the new expansion side.

August 25 vs Real Salt Lake:

This will be the final of three Rocky Mountain Cup matches and the only one played at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park. Hopefully the Rapids are still in position to win the trophy by August 25. This could be the game where they take it back from RSL for a season. This match also has significance given the remaining schedule. The Rapids have just nine league matches after August 25. Six of those will be on the road and seven will be against Western Conference opponents. The Rapids will want to have this game be a building block for the final stretch of the season.