Perspective of Colorado Rapids when MLS is back: xG metric for several seasons

It would be the best start for Colorado Rapids... perhaps they are a strongest roster in their history.

The MLS season is promising for Colorado Rapids. The team can make the best start in their history, they have to win next two games to break the record – They can do this in the MLS is back tournament (the record was set up in 2011 – three matches in row without beating up). Next matches during the month (the July) MLS is back tournament, they will face Real Salt Lake, Sporting Kansas City, Minnesota United. Colorado Rapids can reach for more along the line. But it will not easy to do.

They have much to do many things in the year -- A roster and a skilled and an experienced coach, who made a productive atmosphere in the team to improve there. Robin Fraser achieved a lot as an assistant along with Jason Kreis in the Real Salt Lake (won 2009 MLS Cup), Mike Petke in the New York Red Bulls (took 2013 Supporters’ Shield), Greg Vanney in the Toronto, he helped to take the MLS Cup in 2017. A notable moment that he reached with different teams. He is very quality and professional manager – he can set up any teams on and off the field.

Robin Fraser took the Colorado Rapids, when it went badly wrong... it was a catastrophe for the team. He did improve a result of the team, made them stronger and gave them a stability. And the most significant there that not only the result was imporved and xG metric was shoot up. It is important things for modern soccer... numbers play a big role now.

xG metric

The leaderships managed to keep key players: Sam Vines, Andre Shinyashiki, Jonathan Lewis, Kei Kamara but acquired athletic guys in different positions: Auston Trusty, Lalas Abubakar, Drew Moor, Younes Namli, Nicolas Benezet. Overall, we can say it is the best team in Colorado Rapids’ history. The players can help to improve xG metric that was not good for several years.

xG model shows how many scoring opportunities and how many dangerous chances close by an enemy goal a team makes. It helps a coach to indicate what problem zones the team has and to improve attack movements inside the box and to strengthen the game.


xG points

xG place

MLS regular season place

Season’s points

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Knockout Round






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Did not qualify

Colorado Rapids’ xG statistics

Colorado Rapids always had problems with the numbers. For example, after a fortunate 2016 season – the team reached for a second place in the MLS regular season but lost Seattle Sounders in two legs in the conference final -- they accounted for 34,4, it was 12 perfomance in the league that it logically influenced on next season – they were on a 10 place in the regular season. But they could improve the achievement a bit – it was 34,9 and on a 10 place in the league, but it was not enough to show a good performance there. Since 2011 (when American Soccer Analysis first started to calculate xG), they performed the best result in their history and they can break the record through the season. For that season, They reached a 5 pxG perfomance in west conference and had been on a 5 place in the MLS regular season. (at the time of writing the article). At the moment, the season was changed to the MLS is back, this will replace the most games which was canceled because the virus. They have been a 12 xG performance, and they can assert themselves very well and improve it for the MLS is back.

Colorado Rapids demonstrated a good game through last two matches – against D.C. United and Orlando City in the March – there was a good xG metric perfomance. But there is something to improve.

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Against D.C. United and Orlando City, They accounted for 1.63 and 0.63. D.C. United – 1.28 and Orlando City – 0.85.

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Colorado Rapids showed muscle and extracted a strong-willed victory through the two matches. It was very good because the team can take a win through not easy matches or losing during the match – it reminds of Seattle Sounders and their uncompromising style.

Moreover, the team is able to circulate and keep the ball very well, and the they demonstrate good numbers in the possession – the first match – 52.8% against 47.2% and the second match – 54.8% against 45.2%.

Jonathan Lewis, Kei Kamara, Drew Moor, Younes Namli scored the beautiful goals and thereby helped Colorado Rapids to reach for the wins through the matches.

Most notably that the team realizes their full potential only for the second time, they gain ground for the match and try to destroy opponets when they are exhausted at the end of the match. All goals were scored for the second time through two matches. I think, Robin Fraser can make it better. He has good-performance soccer players in any position; Nicolas Benezet and Younes Namli can make the attack line stronger and more flexible and variable.

Proceeding from last matches, Robin Fraser trys to set up attack style with the possession in the season and making bid in dead ball situations. Half goals were scored in the dead ball situations or long passes into the box – may be it was situation moments. But the last season, there was a combination game style, Robin Fraser may keeps moving forward for the attack line in the season.

Robin Fraser has to rotate the roster to improve the metric to make stable results for next following years.

The defensive line

Lalas Abubakar and Drew Moor have to achieve a good work there not to improve enemy xG metric – the last match, it was worse for Colorado Rapids than in the first match. There are some positional mistakes which to help enemy teams make scoring opportunities close by our goal. They are the one of the best defenders in the league anyway and it will improve for the time.

Robin Fraser has to rotate defenders to improve the metric; he has many guys in the defensive line to do it: Lalas Abubakar, Drew Moor and Auston Trusty, Danny Wilson. And he can use it to improve team’s perfomance and increase xG metric in the defense.

Colorado Rapids rarely shows a good result for the MLS time; They won the 2010 MLS Cup, and a last good-perfomance, shown by the team in 2016. We have been waiting for a long time and it happened, Colorado Rapids have the best team for their history, and they can reach for big results, even through the MLS is back play-off round. Colorado Rapids’ fans deserve it!

Hit the comment! How a far way can the Colorado Rapids reach, when MLS is back?

Another genius post from a Burgundy Wave reader! Remember that this was written by a fan, not an official Burgundy Wave writer, and the content of this post might not necessarily be an official opinion of this blog's management.