Up a Man, Colorado Rapids Draw Sporting KC

rapids draw sporting

COMMERCE CITY, Colo. – It wasn’t the most exciting game of the weekend in MLS, but it was tactically interesting. Colorado Rapids draw Sporting KC after two young players scored, and the teams split the points.

Up a Man, Colorado Rapids Draw Sporting KC 1-1

The first half was a stalemate for long stretches. Both teams played a high line defensively with a compressed midfield line. There was no space for either team to pass through as the game never really opened up.

Peter Vermes was forced to make two first half substitutions due to injuries. First Roger Espinoza came off for Felipe Hernandez 16 minutes in with a left hamstring injury. Roberto Puncec relieved Winston Reid during the hydration break.

The best scoring opportunity of the half came in the 41st minute right after the break. Graham Zusi made a run forward and sent the ball low and hard to the back post. The ball missed the inside of the post and Gadi Kinda.

Colorado didn’t do much with their only good opportunity coming when Keegan Rosenberry overlapped with Jack Price to find Andre Shinyashiki. He couldn’t trap the ball and goalkeeper Tim Melia easily collected the ball.

The game opened up as both teams went for it in the second half. Younes Namli found Cole Bassett to open the scoring in the 57th minute. Diego Rubio had a great dummy on the play to create space for the shot.

Sporting responded 10 minutes later. Gianluca Busio scored on a blast to the bottom corner on second ball off a corner.

The game changed in the 78th minute when Gadi Kinda was given a second yellow for a reckless tackle on Rubio.

Three Takeaways:

Midfield stalemate: Both teams transitioned well into mid-blocks without the ball. Neither team could really figure the other out.

Red card doesn’t help: The Rapids didn’t push hard enough up a man and SKC did a great job locking things down to get a road point.

Youth scores big: It was the two United States Youth National Team players who scored. Bassett and Busio both had great finishes.