Things were looking so bright on last Wednesday morning. They were gearing up for a third consecutive home match and had already bagged six points over two Eastern Conference opponents. They were facing the Chicago Fire who, if you will pardon the pun, had not exactly lit the world on fire. They then traveled to FC Dallas to face a team who had not won since April. As a Rapids fan, you had to lick your chops at the prospect of at least three points out of the final two games. Then the reality of the situation set in, and the Rapids tied 0-0 to the Fire and then lost 3-2 to Dallas. Was it as bad as it seemed?
Here is The Good, The Bad, The Ugly--Colorado Rapids, Round 15
The Good--Relative Health
For as tough as the results were last week, the Rapids were able to get into the World Cup break with their health pretty strong. Gabriel Torres made a late game cameo in the FC Dallas match and Vicente Sanchez was nearing full fitness again. Edson Buddle is on the mend and it is looking like he will be ready for the return of MLS action at the end of June. These are all very good things and these players are key cogs that will help the Rapids achieve the goals that they had set out for the season.
The Not So Bad--A Chance At Redemption
Yes, the results against last week were sucky, but all is not lost. The Rapids enter the World Cup break in a playoff position and come out of it with two consecutive games at home. Things are looking bright, despite the setbacks. Also there is that little matter of the US Open Cup next week. The Rapids take on future MLS opponent Orlando City SC on the 17th. The Lions booted the Rapids out of the competition last year, and with Steward Ceus in Finland, the Rapids have a shot in this one. In all seriousness though, the Rapids have a chance to field a full strength squad, and should they do that, they have a good chance of advancing. And, in a bit of deliciousness, the Rapids could potentially face the other team from the Rocky Mountain Cup the following week in the fifth round. AT HOME
The Not So Ugly--Are We Really That Pissed
Let's be honest here: if you were told a playoff spot at the World Cup Break, you would be ecstatic. Yes, the Rapids have had some less then positive streaks of soccer this year. And yes, the Pablo has done some crazy things with squad rotation that make you wonder in disbelief. But overall this year has gone much better then expected and the Rapids are right in there. Will they have enough to hold on into October? It sounds as if they are going to be active in the transfer market in July and the front office has said they have flexibility to spend.
The Rapids enter the World Cup break on a bit of a stumble, but all in all are positioned well for a run at MLS Cup Playoffs. Yes, there are some concerns (scoring, midfield transitions, ball control), but they are in a position that allows them to make some tweaks to the team and make a push for the playoffs.