What a weekend for the Colorado Rapids and the Charlotte Independence. Both clubs secured important results and for the Rapids it meant a first ever victory in Seattle and for Charlotte, they accomplished something this year that had never been done.
The #OneClub Report:
1) Smiling Eyes: When the Rapids took on Seattle Sounders this weekend it was something that was always going to be a tremendous ask for the Burgundy Boys. But you know what, they got it done. Was it the best example of pretty and attractive football? No, not really (the poor surface had a lot to do with that). But for the Rapids, the simply got it done to bring their season record to 5-6-9 with four of the next six at home. Not saying they are gonna make the playoffs, but....you never know....
From Rapids Gaffer Pablo Mastroeni:
On the importance of the Rapids' first three-game win streak since 2011:
"Obviously we want to win every game. We know how tough it is to win in this league, we know how tough it is to beat a team like Seattle at their place in front of a great crowd. But I think we've got a bunch of believers in there. We don't have a star. We don't have, you know, big name players. We've got a bunch of guys that believe in one another, believe in themselves, and go out and do a great job and perform a tactical job to a T. Just really proud of the group and the mentality, and everyone fighting hard together, especially in a place like this."
On the incremental improvement of the team:
"Well I think nothing in life happens over night. The analogy I like to use is that you plant a seed and you have to water it. It's not going to be a tree that reaps fruit for a couple of years. I think this is no different. This is a process. It's a relatively new group this year. So we had to start basically at square one in preseason. We've taken our lumps along the way, but none of those losses were in vain. We've learned from it, just the fine details have been improved. And these guys want to work, you know, and I think it's great as a coach to see guys that want to pull in that direction. And even when things aren't going your way, you find a way to fight. It would have been so easy for these guys to lay down halfway through the season after only two wins and say, ‘This is it, I'm done.' But, I'm really proud to be a manger of just solid humans, solid men and men of character."
2) Drew Moor: There have been some great things said about Drew over the years, and some nice pieces written about him and about his selection, but this video says it all:
3) Declaring on the Road: Charlotte was able to do something that no other team in USL was able to pull off this weekend as they took points on the road at Rochester. Until Saturday night, the Rhinos were 6-0-0 at home, but were held by a resolute Independence defense in a 0-0 draw. It was a great match to watch and Charlotte certainly had their chances to win the match, but a draw is a good result in Rochester. Carlos Alvarez, Dominique Badji and Ben Newnam all started for the Independence.
This is an off-week for the Rapids which should help players such as Luis Solignac, Dillon Serna, Charles Eloundou and Lucas Pittinari who are dealing with some injury concerns. They are back in action on Saturday, August 1 at home vs LA Galaxy.
The Independence are at home this Friday at 5:30 PM MDT against FC Montreal.