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Chalk Talk - The Folan experiment failed? Nope, still going strong.

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MLS recently introduced a wonderful new feature called the Chalkboard, brought to you by OptaSports. After every game we will be dissecting a player or two from the Rapids using the Chalkboard from the previous game.

I've heard tell from some of the more fickle of Rapids fans that 'the Caleb Folan experiment has failed'. This is interesting especially because these were the same people who were trying to convince me that he was somehow a better target forward than Conor Casey after that DC United match where he scored a brace, but I digress. Yesterday was one of his better games as a Rapid and he showed us all what he can and most likely will do as he continues to learn the tricks of the MLS trade.

Paired up with Omar Cummings up top, the Rapids actually had a fairly similar deal to their usual Casey/Cummings tandem with Folan. Folan has a bit more finesse than Conor, but isn't quite as good when it comes to straight up getting big in the box, one of the few things that came back to bite the Rapids in the proverbial ass when it came to their attack. In fact, looking at his statistics, it's quite literally impossible to see his contributions on set pieces since he only wound up having two headers toward goal, both of which came during the open run of play.

Flick on headers aside, one of the problems with Colorado's offense earlier in the year was partially that they simply weren't taking shots. Folan might only have two goals to his name in MLS right now, but give the man credit for the fact that he is at the very least launching them at the net. He had two more shots in addition to his headers - one of which was a brave howitzer from 30 yards out that, had it not been blocked, looked very dangerous - giving him four on the day, the most shots of anyone on the squad in fact followed by Drew Moor and Jamie Smith with three a-piece.

Folan's distribution was pretty good for a guy who has been pegged by some people as a slow, non-moving target. A ratio of 15:9 successful passes to unsuccessful isn't a fantastic number, but good enough for a striker whose passing was mostly backwards to re-set attacks. His biggest issue came when he tried flicking the ball on, something that just never seems to work with him. Though his head can pass just as well as his foot, when he puts the ball in the air the accuracy just seems to fail him as attested by the 1:4 ratio of good to bad flick ons he performed.

Folan has certainly had some bad games as a Rapid but to say that the Folan experiment has failed is simply untrue. He is still finding his legs in MLS and as his games improve, it's looking likely that he will indeed mature into a pretty good MLS striker.

Of course, he's still overpaid, but whattayagonnado?