Thursday, September 4, 2008

Rapids Secure Vital Win Down Texas Way

Holy Crap! Victory is ours. The Colorado Rapids went all the way down to Texas and beat FC Dallas 1-0. The team's first away victory since April. In a week that saw us down in the dumps having lost another road game against Salt Lake and in which we said goodbye to a fan favorite, a header from Mike Petke (where was the Dallas defense?) of all people was enough to secure the win. We are, remarkably, back in playoff contention. There are many areas in this team that need fixing (Is Christian Gomez on the way out? Can we really afford not to play Bouna Coundoul when he is available?) but, for now, we should celebrate this much-needed win. The team, especially after the goal went in in the 59th minute, showed a resilience that has been sorely lacking by their own admission. Just go to the MLS website to see the comments from Petke and Cory Gibbs about how nobody showed up to play in Utah. (
Tonight, however, you could see an intensity in the players to hold on to that lead and not let go and it was exciting to watch, if not exactly pretty.
Gary Smith, who has already been through some dodgy moments in his fledgling managerial career, showed a lot of guts in selecting Kosuke Kimura and Jordan Harvey to play in the backline, dropping Burciaga and the ever present Erpen. This is someone who is clearly not afraid to make the right choices for the team on any given day. Leaving Christian Gomez out is another tough decision and has to be respected even if you don't agree with it because it is not easy to leave out your most expensive, talented and experienced player. In addition, it was good to see Terry Cooke and Pablo Mastroeni back although Pablo was taken off early in the second half, hopefully more as a precaution with that hamstring injury.
The team now has a nice layoff after a seemingly very busy last couple of weeks. A few days off before preparing for two difficult home games in a row against Chicago and New England. Much needs to be done to secure the momentum gained from this improbable victory but, for now, let's get the beers in.


Scott said...

A win is a win, but man was this a lucky one. I know there is a reason that Kenny Cooper does not play defense, but the number of chances that he created on offense made our D look very lucky. At the same time, the outside guys played extremely well last night, good job Harvey and Kimura.

I am still wondering why C Gomez was not playing. All of our chances came from Cooke on the wing, McManus in the first half and Petke's goal in the second half were both off corner kicks and honestly those were our only good chances. If we can get Pablo back to health and ready to play full matches, I really see no reason to keep Gomez out of the middle as another credible playmaking threat. Clark did well on the other wing, but he still has some growth.

Like I said to start though, a win is a win and boy am I happy today.

johncos said...

It is nice to get a little luck. A few games back we where very UNLUCKY so I guess it evens out. I was delighted to see Petke's remarks in the media and to see him really vocal on the back line. He and Gibbs seem to be communicating better.

This western devision is so strange this year... anything can happen.