The Colorado Rapids earned a clean sheet this afternoon, beating Toronto FC 2-0 to take all three points at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park. While TFC was playing with their B—or even C—squad due to the CCL, these are three points that most Western Conference teams aren’t going to get this year (h/t to Matt Pollard for pointing that out).
The game started out with a bang when Kip Colvey crossed the ball into the box just two minutes in. It deflected off of a defender and to Jack Price, who took a couple dribbles and then went for it. No defenders stepped up to Price and he put it past Toronto FC keeper Clint Irwin to give the Rapids an early 1-0 lead.
After the game, Jack Price said “I just saw a gap and I just thought you know well I’m going to hit this, so I don’t usually do that much. I usually just keep the ball, but yeah you know, it went in. I was very happy and it was a good start for the lads.”
Several Rapids had chances throughout the first half, including Dominique Badji and Jack McBean. Anthony Hudson used his first sub early, bringing in Dillon Serna for Kip Colvey in the 39th minute. When asked about the substitution in the post-game press conference, Hudson replied that is was “just a tactical change.” It felt a bit like a waste of a sub, so I wonder if we’ll see Serna get the start next week against Salt Lake.
TFC controlled possession and had a couple dangerous looks throughout the first 45 minutes, but at halftime, the score was still 1-0 for the good guys.
Just after the teams cleared the field, Kortne Ford and his mother, Laurie, were brought out. The Rapids designated today as Laurie Ford Day to bring awareness to her battle with cancer. They showed a video of Kort on the big screen, and then Laurie said a few words:
Shkelzen Gashi made his 2018 debut in the second half, coming in for Jack McBean in the 69th minute. Right away, Price sent a ball through for Gashi, but he was called offside. Badji was getting beat up a bit throughout the game, and he earned the Burgundy Boys penalty kick when Liam Fraser took down the forward in the box in the 77th minute. Gashi stepped up and put a strike right down the middle as Irwin dove to his right.
Yannick Boli also made his Rapids’ debut, subbing in for Enzo Martinez. He paired with Badji up top, which pushed Gashi into the midfield.
After the game, Boli told the media how he felt about getting some minutes. “It was a good feeling because I was prepared during the training, but yes, it was a long time I didn’t play an official game, so yeah it was tough,” he said. “But I was happy, exciting to (be) coming back on the pitch and we won so I’m happy.”
When it was all said and done, the Rapids earned three points for their efforts. Colorado had 7 shots on target and 17 total shots from 7 different players. The Rapids ended up with 42.6% possession for the entire game. Jack Price got his 4th yellow card in 4 games.
Toronto had 16 total shots, with 4 shots on target, and 57.4% possession.
Anthony Hudson was proud of today’s effort. “I think what we are seeing is a team that is working together, we’re not a team of individuals, and that we have good players that are playing to a certain style and system, players that are stepping up,” he said in the post-game press conference. “They’re all stepping up and fulfilling their role within that system as well. The biggest thing is we have a group of players that are playing for each other.”