If nothing else, Saturday was a hell of a lot of fun. No, it was not the greatest match you will ever see, but it had lots of goals, questionable refereeing decisions and poor defense. Colorado Rapids were able to put three goals in the net in a 3-3 draw with the Philadelphia Union. The Rapids were led by goals from Dillon Serna, Dillon Powers and Deshorn Brown and some last minute goalkeeping from Clint Irwin that preserved the point.
Here is The Good, The Bad, The Ugly--Colorado Rapids, Round 18
The Good--The Streak Continues
However it happen is less relevant than the overall result. The Rapids have now gone unbeaten in three and were able to get a result when they did not play their best. The lads did well controlling possession and they were able to turn that into three goals. With the tie they brought their record to 7-5-6 which has them in third place and a trip to Portland on Friday to take on the Timbers.
The Bad--This Leaky Defense
For as good as the possession and offense was, the defense was just atrocious. Jared Watts, Shane O'Neill and Drew Moor did not have their best stuff on the evening and bad man marking and bad passes led to Philadelphia putting three up on the board. I know that players have bad games, and that is part and parcel in a season as long as MLS, but the mistakes are costing points. From defense lapses in the FC Dallas match, to mistakes in the Columbus Crew match and in Philadelphia--the defense has been rather suspect. It is sounding like a broken record, but the defense has to improve if the Rapids are going to make a playoff push.
The Ugly--Another Suspended Player
And this broken record continues....Saturday night presented the MLS Disciplinary Committee another opportunity to look at a Rapids player after O'Neill made an extremely poor and ill timed challenge. Based on O'Neill's late and dirty challenge on the Union's Danny Cruz, our starting center back is going to miss the important, and difficult, trip to Portland this weekend. Couple that with Vicente Sanchez sitting out the Portland match while suspended, the Rapids will be missing two key contributors via suspension and one due to injury (Jose Mari).
The Rapids are halfway through a two game road trip with a challenging visit to the Timbers on Friday night. The Timbers are a struggling team that have significantly underachieved this season and will be looking to make an impression on national television. For the Rapids to come out of this one with a result, they will need to play solid defense (I think you see Marvell Wynne shift to center back) and push the ball forward against a shaky Portland back four. Do that, and the Rapids can come out of Providence Park with a victory.