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Colorado Rapids CB Kortne Ford to miss 8-10 weeks with MCL Sprain

Feb 27, 2018; Toronto, Ontario, USA; Colorado Rapids defender Kortne Ford (24) tackles Toronto FC forward Sebastian Giovinco (10) to earn a booking in the second half of their CONCACAF Champions League game at BMO Field. (Dan Hamilton/USA TODAY Sports)

DENVER – Entering their season opening clash with the New England Revolution on Saturday, the Colorado Rapids will be without one of their best defenders.

Rapids centerback Kortne Ford will be out eight to 10 weeks with a sprained left medial collateral ligament (MCL), the club announced Wednesday.

The injury occurred during a training session Saturday following the team’s 0-0 draw with Toronto FC in the second leg of the sides’ CONCACAF Champions League series.

Signed as a Homegrown player last season, Ford became an important part of the Rapids defense in his rookie season, logging 1,727 minutes in 2017 and tallying a goal along the way. The 22-year-old was also one of the primary defensive contenders for MLS Rookie of the Year.

Newly-hired Rapids head coach Anthony Hudson has a plethora of options to choose from in replacing Ford at centerback. Rapids newcomers Tommy Smith, 27 (signed from Ipswich Town), Danny Wilson, 26 (signed from Rangers) and Deklan Wynne, 22 (acquired from Vancouver via waiver draft) will likely feature in Colorado’s starting centerback trio. Each played a full 90 minutes in the two-game CCL series with Toronto.

Colorado also has further depth in Axel Sjöberg, Eric Miller and Jared Watts, but the regular starters under previous head coach Pablo Mastroeni have seen limited action in preseason.

“It’s going to be a tough test for us,” Hudson said following Wednesday’s practice. “But we’re in a good place, confident, and we’re looking forward to the game.”

The Rapids and Revolution meet Saturday at Gillette Stadium with kickoff set for 11:30 a.m. MST (1:30 PM EST).

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