Tuesday, 7 p.m., Altitude, 950 AM, 87.7 FM
Spotlight on Clint Dempsey: A mainstay on the U.S. men’s national team who played much of his career in the English Premier League, Dempsey has been tough on the Rapids in the six games he has played against them, racking up four goals with two assists. He is tied with Will Bruin for the Sounders’ scoring lead this season (five). In Seattle’s most recent MLS game a week ago Sunday, Seattle coach Brian Schmetzer elected not to start him at Portland on a hot night, but Dempsey came off the bench to score a stoppage-time equalizer in a 2-2 result.
Sounders: Seattle ended Colorado’s season last year in the Western Conference finals, 3-1 on aggregate. Seattle won 2-1 at home, then clinched a trip to the MLS Cup final with a 1-0 win here. Seattle went on to win its first MLS Cup two weeks later over Toronto FC on penalty kicks. Jordan Morris, who scored the winning goal in the playoff game here last year, is away with the U.S. men’s national team for the Gold Cup, as is midfielder Cristian Roldan. The Sounders (5-7-6 overall, 1-6-3 on the road) are tied for eighth place in the Western Conference, one spot ahead of Colorado. Seattle hasn’t played an MLS game since the draw at Portland on June 25 but lost to San Jose last Wednesday in the U.S. Open Cup.
Rapids: This is Colorado’s sixth game in 18 days (five MLS games and a U.S. Open Cup match). After Tuesday, the Rapids will be off until a road game July 22 at Toronto FC, and they won’t have a home game until Aug. 5. Colorado is 5-1 in its last six homes games and is coming off a 3-1 victory over Houston last Saturday. Center backs Axel Sjoberg (hamstring) and Bobby Burling (foot) are out. The Rapids traditionally play at home on the Fourth of July and haven’t lost on Independence Day since 2012, going 2-0-2 since then. This is the second consecutive year they will host the reigning MLS champions for the July 4 game. Tim Howard, goalkeeper for the U.S. men’s national team, made his debut with the Rapids in the Fourth of July game a year ago.