Monday, October 5, 2009

Rapids Drawn, Playoff Chances Quartered

OK, quartered is an overstatement, but we didn't do our chances much good with only 1 point in our final home game. The Rapids once again went down early only to get bailed out by a PK to get a 1-1 draw.

The first half was pretty quiet. The first of two notable events happened very early as Ballouchy was lining up for a free kick. The referee told him to wait for the whistle, set the wall, and put the whistle in his mouth. Ballouchy took the kick and right after the referee blew the whistle. Since Ballouchy went early he killed the play, brought it back for a restart, and carded Ballouchy in the 9th minute! Complete over-reaction to what happened but it was an indicator of what was to come from the referee. The other event was the New England goal. Kimura committed an unnecessary foul out on the wing. The free kick was perfectly floated in and Dube got above Cummings to head it home.

The second half was much more eventful. In the 57th minute Cummings was moving through the box. He felt pressure on his shoulder and collapsed. The referee decided there was enough contact and called the PK. It was a weak call, the only thing is that we couldn't see the right hand of the defender being Cummings so there may have been more of a tug, but I doubt it. Casey converted for his 16th goal of the season. A minute later Baudet got into a pushing match with Dube. As he shoved him away with his arm his hand caught Dube in the face. Dube went down like a ton of bricks and the referee bought it, showing Baudet the straight red. This call was even weaker than the PK call. Oddly enough the Rapids played better after that, controlling the game and generating a couple of good chances including a cannon shot from Cummings off the crossbar. There was no beating Reis though.

My key to the game was Pablo Mastroeni vs. Shalrie Joseph. Joseph did almost nothing in this game, so Pablo, with help from LaBrocca, won that battle. The Revs really didn't have many chances other than the goal. Unfortunately that's the only chance they needed.

Other Observations:
  • The Rapids really need a win in the final two games to make the playoffs. 2 draws might be enough but it would probably require winning a tiebreaker
  • Harvey struggled at left mid this game, probably due to the wider field. I'm not sure the 3-5-2 works on the wide fields we're going to be playing on the rest of the season
  • Not sure who was supposed to be covering Dube on the goal. I find it hard to believe we put Cummings on their only true forward. Moor seemed to be in the middle covering nobody so I'm guessing it was supposed to be him and Cummings (and at the end, Harvey) we're trying to fill in the gap
  • Ballouchy was a waste, I'm not sure how many balls he gave up on
  • Ballouchy's yellow card was a joke though, and it will leave him suspended for he game in Dallas (along with Baudet)
  • 4 games, 4 draws, and our only goals have come from 3 PK's. We need to find our offense quickly
  • Casey's goal ties him with Cunningham for the golden Boot, but Cunningham has one more game to play than Casey
  • Cummings, Gibbs, Kimura, and Palguta are now safe from yellow card suspension for this season
Player of the Game: Pablo Mastroeni. Keeping Joseph that quiet was a job well done, even if Pablo risked a yellow card late in the box. Honorable mention to Baudet who didn't deserve the red card and had a couple of our best shots of the night off of corner kicks.

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