Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Rapids Lose Composure And Three Points

Finally feeling better so I'm getting back to the blog.  I'm going to dispense with my normal recap, as I assume everyone is up to speed by this point.  The bottom line is that the Rapids fought back from a 1-0 deficit to take a 2-1 lead with 12 minutes to play, then lost 3-2.  Not the way you want to end a game.

Other Observations:
  • Seriously, up 1 with 12 minutes to play and we give up two goals, take 2 yellows, and 1 second yellow/red.  Complete lack of focus and composure to finish off KC and we paid for it.
  • After Wynne was ejected and we brought Hairston in, we had 5 draftees from the last two drafts (Berner, Watts, Hairston, Powers, Brown) and 1 homegrown player (O'Neill) on the field, 6 of the 10 players.  That a great sign for the future.
  • You'd think that might have led to our lack of composure, but it was one of the senior players (Wynne) who broke down the most and the other two players who got yellow cards were LaBrocca and Sturgis.  All in all, the kids did OK.
  • Wynne had a horrible, horrible game.  The first KC goal sequence starts by Wynne trying to volley a chest pass only for it to have easily intercepted by Zusi.  Zusi passes it and breaks towards goal from the midfield strips.  Wynne, probably the fastest player in the league, lets him go while ball-watching and then doesn't close him down when he gets into the box, leaving Zusi wide open for the tap-in.
  • On the second goal, right off the kickoff from the Rapids 2nd goal, Wynne and O'Neill get split by the KC attacker.  Wynne then drifts into the middle of no-mans land, once again ball watching, and is not in any position to help defend KC's attack until its too late.
  • Finally, 5 minutes later, he comes in way late on a tackle a good 70+ yards from goal and on the sideline, picking up a second yellow for a foul that was completely unnecessary and leaving the team a man down to defend the draw.  If he wasn't suspended next week I'd suggest benching him.
  • Berner looked tentative and unsure in this game.  time for Irwin to get back between the pipes.
  • Generally Pablo seemed to go with a "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" strategy for the lineup in this one.  I understand it, but I think we saw in this match that the lineup needs some tweaks.
  • 2 more PKs makes 5 for the season in the first 3 games.  I'm not real worried about our lack of goals without PK help, with the exception of the one in NY they all came when the Rapids were making dangerous attacks.  The goals will come if we keep that up.
  • That said, the first PK was a tough call against KC.  Probably a good no call there but I can see what the ref saw with hands hitting the ball while falling.
  • KC got their own benefit of the doubt though early in the game.  Kronberg collapsing on Sanchez to keep him from stealing the ball just outside the box could have easily been a red card.
  • Drew did get beat on KC's third goal and admitted so after the match, expecting Dwyer to go to his right foot.  Still that was a hell of a blast from the KC striker.
  • LaBrocca, you get the ball inside the 6 with the goalkeeper beat, don't soft foot it!  Pick a spot and hammer it home!
  • Buddle had a nice shot in the first half and generally was ok, but still not getting enough out of him for his salary.
  • No Wynne, possibly no Burch, and possibly no Moor (rumor circulating he might be suspended for his elbow in the 1st half) will make a very ugly defensive line in Vancouver on Saturday.
Man of the Match: Vicente Sanchez.  Honestly he could have been MOTM for all 3 games.  2 more goals, both from PKs, making him 4 for 4 already this season.  Generally he was the best guy out there for the home team.  In fact, any Rapid showing the ball skills he did on Saturday should have a big yellow afro.

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