Dick's Sporting Goods Park under snow (March 9, 2013)

Rapids-Union match postponed until Sunday at 3 ET due to winter storm conditions

With forecasts calling for as much as over a foot of snow, Major League Soccer has postponed Saturday's Colorado Rapids home opener against the Philadelphia Union to Sunday, March 10, at 3 pm ET (1 pm MT).

Altitude, TCN Philadelphia and MLS LIVE will broadcast Sunday's game live with Univision Deportes Network (UDN) showing the match at 7 pm ET.

The Rapids and Union held a conference call with league officials on Saturday morning to discuss the situation with the primary concern being the safety of fans driving to and from the game.

“As always, the safety of our fans, staff and athletes is paramount, and the conditions in the Denver area preclude the game from being played as originally scheduled.” MLS EVP of competition and game operations Nelson Rodriguez said in a league statement. “We would like to thank both clubs for working with us to plan accordingly and we look forward to their match on Sunday at 1 pm local time.”

The Rapids had embraced a potential game in the blizzard, creating a Twitter hashtag of “WinterFortress” and creating plans to distribute white rally towels for fans in attendance.

But concerns crept in with as much as 18 inches of snow forecast for Saturday in the Denver metro area along with strong winds. A blizzard warning has been issued for Adams County, Colo., which includes Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, and a travel warning is calling for travel only in case of emergency.

“We had hoped and planned to play our match as scheduled, but we cannot put staff, fans, and players from both teams at risk by asking them to travel or play in unsafe conditions,” Rapids club president Tim Hinchey said in a statement. “The weather, roads and field will clear up by Sunday at 1:00, and we look forward to welcoming everyone to Dick’s Sporting Goods Park for our home opener at that time.”

Chris Bianchi covers the Colorado Rapids for MLSsoccer.com.