SAINT PAUL, MN. – Minnesota United and Emanuel Reynoso hosted the Colorado Rapids on Sunday night in the first round of the 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs. Both teams were dealing with outside back issues as Romain Metanire was unavailable due to international duty. Sam Vines
Emanuel Reynoso Assists Lift Minnesota United Over Colorado Rapids
The match started out similarly to the Oct. 28 meeting between these teams. Colorado came out buzzing. Their passing and movement was good, creating chances and corners.
Young goalkeeper Dayne St. Clair denied Jonathan Lewis on five minutes. Colorado passed the ball directly as Cole Bassett laid the ball off for an on-rushing Lewis. St. Clair went to ground to make the kick save.
Minnesota got on the board against the run of play in the 22nd minute. Off a throw in, Emanuel Reynoso and Kevin Molino had a give-and-go to get into the space between the centerbacks. Molino took a touch to create an angle to score in the bottom left corner.
Pressing in the 31st minute almost made it 2-1. Minnesota turned Younes Namli over at midfield to start a 3-on-1. Some cute passing set Reynoso up for a tap in but he hit the post.
Halftime sub Nicolas Benezet brought life to the visitors. In the opening minutes he set Bassett up for a shot inside the six yard box, but the ball went straight to the keeper. Benezet followed up moments later with a shot outside the post.
Again against the run of play, Minnesota scored. Reynoso made a long outlet pass to Robin Lod. Lod dribbled forward and got just enough space on Danny Wilson to pick out the bottom far corner.
The game opened up after that with players from both sides getting good chances that they couldn’t finish. It easily could have become 3-1 quickly.
Eventually, Molino would make it three. Great passing through Reynoso and Jan Gregus undid the Rapids defense with numbers upfield. The match ended 3-0.
Phase 1: Get the ball
Phase 2: ?
Phase 3: Score goal pic.twitter.com/WMAJAvV9ji
— Minnesota United FC (@MNUFC) November 23, 2020
Dominating the little moments: This game was closely contested for long stretches. Both teams had good spells of possession and good shooting opportunities. Minnesota dominated those little moments. They finished their chances and their defensive players made plays when they needed to be.
No Vines leads to problems: Questions will be asked about the decision to not risk Sam Vines, who was dealing with a hamstring issue. Further questions will be asked about playing Kellyn Acosta in his place and the decision to not bring in a natural right back till it the 72nd minute. Acosta played alright given the circumstances. Neither Colorado central defender played well and the backline struggled with gap control and 1-v-1 defending.
Reynoso, Assist King: Emanuel Reynoso assisted on all three goals in this game. He’s gotten better every game he’s played for his new club. He and Molino could be the offensive talismen Minnesota needs to challenge for a title.