The Rapids opened their 2021 campaign with a 0-0 draw against Dallas while Austin lost their inaugural match 2-0 to LAFC.
Coaching in his 100th career MLS game, Robin Fraser and his side seemed content with a draw in their opening match last weekend, though they will know if not for some outstanding saves from Dallas keeper Jimmy Maurer, they could have earned all three points.
Given how successful expansion franchises have been in MLS recently, the Rapids will know this match with Austin will be anything but a cakewalk.
Colorado have not lost a home opener since 2013, and they will be happy with their defensive work in their opening game, picking up a clean sheet for the first time in a competitive match since November 17, 2020.
The Rapids can be a highly entertaining side to watch, though they did not give their fans much to cheer about last season, winning only three times on their home turf.
Despite losing their opening MLS game, we saw plenty of good football from Austin last Saturday.
The Texans had 56% of the possession against a quality side in LAFC, and if not for some outstanding goalkeeping from Pablo Sisniega in the late stages, Austin may well have come away with their first points in franchise history.
Manager Josh Wolff is a proven winner, capturing two Gold Cups plus an MLS Cup in his playing days, and he will hope his success as a player can translate to even more as a coach.
This team has a solid mix of promising prospects who are eager to duplicate what other MLS expansion teams have accomplished in a short amount of time.
Both Aaron Schoenfeld and Ulises Segura missed their team's inaugural match with knee injuries which means Cecilio Dominguez, the first-ever Designated Player for Austin, will be counted on to deliver the first goal in franchise history.
Colorado Rapids possible starting lineup:
Yarbrough; Acosta, Wilson, Trusty, Rosenberry; Namli, Price, Shinyashiki, Bassett, Barrios; Rubio
Austin FC possible starting lineup:
Tarbell; Sweat, Besler, Romana, Lima; Ring, Pochettino, Pereira; Dominguez, Hoesen, Redes
We say: Colorado Rapids 2-1 Austin FC
Playing seven consecutive games on the road is challenging for any team to start the season, let alone a squad still learning what it is like to play in MLS. The Rapids have more established, creative players than their opponents, which will ultimately be too much for Austin to handle.