HERTFORDSHIRE ENGLAND (Wednesday March 5 2008) –The Colorado Rapids put on a strong showing this afternoon earning a 3-2 win over Ipswich at the Arsenal Training Centre.
With the victory Colorado remains undefeated during preseason play with a 3-0-3 record.
Throughout the first half the Rapids were the aggressors coming close to finding the back of the net on multiple occasions. With a beautifully played corner kick by midfielder Terry Cooke into the area midfielder Rafael Gomes netted the contest’s first score with a finishing header in the 23rd minute.
Colorado continued their attack with several other near misses as the Ipswich defense had problems the first 45 minutes of play handling the Rapids’ crosses across the middle. With just under a minute left before the break ‘keeper Bouna Coundoul made a key save as Colorado was out-numbered in the box to preserve their 1-0 lead at the half.
It did not take Ipswich long to equal the score at 1-1 in the second half. Having trouble clearing the ball out of their own area the Rapids found themselves looking at a tie score in the 57th minute.
Colorado quickly responded just two minutes later when midfielder Nick LaBrocca stuck the ball from nearly 20+ yards out giving the Rapids the lead once again at 2-1.
Both teams continued to battle for much of the second half with neither side gaining complete control.
Colorado forward Tom McManus who joined the team in England earlier in the week for a tryout worked in well with his new teammates and Ciaran O’Brien looked to put the Rapids clearly on top on several occasions that came to no avail.
With the Ipswich attack coming on strong once again the Colorado defense suffered a hand ball allowing the Tractor Boys to tie the score at 2-2 in the 23rd minute on a penalty kick.
The Rapids were able to quickly respond a second time in the half answering the Ipswich goal in the 28th minute. Defender Tim Ward played a long ball from the Colorado defense laying it perfectly in for forward Jovan Kirovski who had no problem striking the back of the net to lift the Rapids to victory.
Tomorrow the Rapids will face the Arsenal Reserves at the Arsenal Training Centre.
COL - Gomes (Cooke) 23
COL - LaBrocca (unassisted) 59
COL – Kirovski (Ward) 74
Colorado Rapids: Bouna Coundoul Cesar Zambrano (Dan Gargan 67) Stephen Keel (Mike Petke 59) Facundo Erpen (Jordan Harvey 45) Jose Luis Burciaga Jr. (Tim Ward 45) Terry Cooke (Jacob Peterson 45) Rafael Gomes (Ciaran O’Brien 45) Christian Gomez (Nick LaBrocca 45) John DiRaimondo (Tom McManus 45) Colin Clark (Nico Colaluca 45) Omar Cummings (Jovan Kirovski 45)