COMMERCE CITY, Colo. (Monday, December 20, 2010) – The Colorado Rapids open defense of their 2010 MLS Cup championship on Saturday, March 19, 2011 when they welcome the expansion Portland Timbers to Dick’s Sporting Goods Park at 7 p.m. MT.

The Rapids’ complete 2011 schedule will be released at a later date.

Colorado will be kicking off their 16th season in Major League Soccer at home for only the fourth time. The Rapids hold a 9-2-4 all-time record in home openers and have an unbeaten mark of 3-0-1 in home openers at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.

Portland begin their inaugural MLS campaign under the direction of head coach John Spencer, who played for Colorado from 2001-2004 and remains among the top all-time leaders in several categories for the club. A former team captain, Spencer was the fourth-ever player inducted into the club’s hall of fame by having his name and number hung permanently inside Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in the Rapids Gallery of Honor on August 30, 2009.

All 18 MLS clubs will take the field during the opening week as they embark on a 34-game, balanced regular season in which every club will face each of the other 17 twice – once at home, once on the road.

Single game tickets for the Rapids’ 2011 Opening Day will go on sale in early February of next year, so the best way fans can assure their spot is by securing season tickets.

Rapids full season ticket packages are on sale now and are available by calling (303) 825-GOAL or visiting ColoradoRapids.com.