Tonight, the Colorado Rapids lost their fifth game of the season. The New England Revolution hadn’t scored in four games and hadn’t won a game since July. They are ranked 17th in MLS. Even though the Rapids were missing some keys players due to international call-ups and injury, the Revs were also missing a couple guys, and the Rapids had won after each of their previous three losses.
Tonight should have been a W.
But instead, it was more of the same—the defense broke down, the offense couldn’t get anything going—and now the Rapids are heading into Dallas next week.
If you just glanced at the stats from this game, possession was almost 50/50 (not bad), neither team had that many shots on target (Rapids had two, Revs had three), and passing accuracy was decent. So what happened?
Well, for starters, the Rapids were called for 13 fouls, compared to the Revs’ 8 fouls. The Rapids were given 4(!) yellow cards—one each for Sam Cronin, Dominique Badji, Zac MacMath, and Bobby Burling.
The game was pretty boring for the first 10-ish minutes. Then Michael Azira lost his man on a give-and-go between Gershon Koffie and Lee Nguyen, which eventually allowed Juan Agudelo to get a shot in between Eric Miller and Axel Sjöberg to put the Revs up 1-0 in the 12th minute.
The Rapids had some chances in the first half. In fact, Dillon Powers had a couple great opportunities (he actually had five shots and the only two the team had on goal). But for the most part, the offense couldn’t get anything going. Zac MacMath came out and fouled Kelyn Rowe to earn a yellow card, which gave the Revs a penalty kick. Nguyen took the shot and it hit the post. The Rapids got lucky, and went in to the half only down by one goal.
In the second half, no one was getting on anything in the box, and Kevin Doyle missed some crosses, aka every game lately with the Rapids. Chris Tierney scored in the 49th minute, putting the Revs up 2-0.
Pablo Mastroeni subbed Marlon Hairston in for Sébastien Le Toux in the 58th minute, then subbed Caleb Calvert in for Michael Azira in the 73rd minute, even though Badji was quickly running out of steam. Caleb Calvert played great, which was just about the only bright spot in this game. Of course, the Rapids were missing a handful of guys, but this game wasn’t that much worse than what we’ve been seeing anyway.
And here we are. Eight games left in the regular season. Just three wins since May 22. An absolutely dismal offense. Each week sinking further down in the standings.
So I want your thoughts on this: Are the Rapids going to keep doing the same thing and expect a different result, or are they going to try to salvage this season?
Or, do you think this is a case of missing too many players and having too many injuries?