That game against Atlanta is one more notch in a troublesome 2017 season. Once more, the Colorado Rapids find themselves in last place in the Western Conference. Here's one big reason why.
The Road Warriors the Rapids Ain't
The Colorado Rapids are 0-7-0 (W-L-T) on the road. 5-1-3 at home (not bad), but unless the Rapids figure out ways to get points—any points—on the road, the playoffs are out of the question.
In 2016, the Rapids were 15-6-13, tallying 59 points. Their home record was 11-0-6, leaving a road record of 4-6-7. Second place in the Western Conference, the Burgundy Boys were able to accrue 19 points on the road. Unless the Rapids go on a tear like the 2016 Seattle Sounders (how much has the Burgundy Wave invoked them in hopes of a turnaround to this troublesome campaign?), this will be a season of the outside looking in come playoff time.
What's more troublesome is that the Rapids, with such a strong defense in 2016, have been outscored 13-2 on the road. In their first match on the road against the New York Red Bulls, they held strong, only to give up an own goal by Eric Miller. But for whatever reason (you can sound off your thoughts in the comments section), they cannot seem to (1) score, and (2) they give up too many goals. The only goals they've scored were on a late (late!) penalty versus Sporting Kansas City, and a nice goal by Caleb Calvert against the Philadelphia Union.
Seven games, no results. Weak offense, porous defense. What can be done to get the Rapids somehow back on track on the road in 2017?
And the next four MLS matches will prove to be challenging:
- Home against Houston Dynamo (July 1)
- Home against the Seattle Sounders (July 4—have you got your tickets yet?)
- Away against Eastern Conference leader Toronto FC (July 22)
- Away against the San Jose Earthquakes (July 29)
Two home games against two strong teams in a weak Western Conference, two away games against very formidable foes in their own domiciles. Fortunately, the Rapids match up well against San Jose, so don't be surprised if the Rapids can get some sort of result at Avaya Stadium (you heard it here first).
So Here's My Question
The Rapids meet FC Dallas in the Open Cup at Toyota Stadium in Frisco. Again, unless the Rapids make a Herculean run, silverware is out of the question as far as the Supporters’ Shield. However, in the Open Cup, should the Rapids make it past FC Frisco, momentum could make some noise for our Burgundy Boys.
So, here's my question: would you like to see the Rapids make a run at the Open Cup, or would you be fine with them trying but not making it too terribly far so they can concentrate on getting their season on track?
My thoughts? The Western Conference is weak. Even though the Rapids are in last place, they are only six points behind sixth place LA Galaxy. Hopefully, our boys can get healthy, especially over the July international break, get four points (at least) over the next two games, get a result in the next two away games - then the Rapids have a shot.
As for the Open Cup, I hope we can at least beat FC Dallas. After that, if the Rapids find themselves not advancing any further, fine. But focus on the MLS season!
Sound off in the comments section. See you all July 1st!