My key to the game was was score early, score often. We didn't score at all so that was a failure.
- In what universe is it a good idea to make a change to your established back line going into the playoffs, especially a one-and-done game on the road? Mera was completely ineffective and directly responsible for both goals (and could have given up a 3rd on a PK).
- Meanwhile O'Neill, now on the right, had no positive impact on the game and took away whatever attack we had down the right this season.
- Powers and Sanchez weren't available so Rivero and Harris started. Rivero made sense (LaBrocca has added nothing to the attack the last few starts) but he had a minimal impact. There is no way the Rapids should be buying him this off-season at any level that would make him a DP. If we can get him on loan cheap again then its worth it,, but I shudder to consider tying up a large percentage of our salary cap in him given how unproven he appears to be.
- Harris was, as always, useless. Cascio would have been a better start or, dare I say it, Buddle.
- Thomas' play has really dropped off in the second half of the season. Last night he was lucky not to draw a red.
- The officiating was horrible, but didn't impact the end result. Yedlin getting away with an elbow to Brown's face was shocking but not surprising given Petrescu's normal level for violent conduct, which involves practically knifing a guy to draw a yellow card. To turn around and yellow Harris right after that for a tackle that didn't even make contact was ridiculous though.
- Having spent too much time around refs I can see what Petrescu was thinking not calling the PK on the Rapids, but I wouldn't have objected had it been called.
- The Dempsey-Irwin collision that drew a yellow on Irwin was probably a fair result, given that Irwin was the last man but with the ball rolling out towards the corner. The way Petrescu let the Thomas-Yedlin collision go uncalled in the first half though a red would have been incredibly unfair to the Rapids (not to mention against the USSF's ATR on the 4 D's).
- I don't think I've seen a keeper make a mental blunder quite like the one Gspurning made to see red. You could kind of justify only a yellow there for the handling, but to follow it up with a wild swing at Buddle (even if he did go down easy) made red an easy call.
- Eddie Johnson gesticulating at the official afterwards was real classy. He's surprised me with his quality of play since he got back to MLS, but his attitude is such that I'm not that disappointed that he was whisked out from under the Rapids at the last minute.
- Pareja's subs: Sanchez for Rivero - OK, Rivero wasn't that effective but there were better options (Harris) to pull. Buddle for Brown - Yeah, because down a goal in a must win match is the perfect time to pull the season's leading scorer. Wynne for Sturgis. W.T.F. Now you put Wynne in, instead of from the beginning when he could have helped on D?
- Of course the bench makeup was equally puzzling. The non-GK unused subs were Wallace, LaBrocca, and Serna. No Castrillon, Hill, Cascio, or Mwanga. So after Buddle and Sanchez there was essentially no offensive help on the bench. Stupid.
- Not surprisingly Seattle had as many goals as we had shots on target (2). That makes 5 shots on target in our last 4 road games combined while being outscored 7-0. That's the fundamental reason our season is over.
- A nice insult to injury move by the Rapids social media guys, who changed their Facebook cover photo to a image with "Renew Your 2014 Season tickets" within minutes of the final whistle. How about letting the body cool first before hitting us up for money?
- Rooting for a Portland-New England MLS Cup now. Two fan bases that have been awesome working with the Rapids fan base. I wouldn't get too upset with another LA win though, only because Pablo would get a second ring. Same thing for NY and Koz.
- Over the weekend and into next week I'll be posting my typical player of the year, season review, and offseason lineup decision columns.
Player of the Match: Vicente Sanchez. He subbed in played the last 30 minutes with a fractured bone in his shoulder and still had the biggest effect on our offense all night.