Colorado Rapids

Fieldside Chat | Midweek check-in with Oliver Larraz and Chris Armas 


Midfielder Oliver Larraz

On the loss to FC Cincinnati

It was a frustrating game. Overall, I think everyone would have said that and everyone knows that. And frankly, it just needs to be better for us. There are a good side and it's a tough place to go. But we don't want to make excuses and we want to be at that level. And I think we can be but you just didn't see the true team that we've been building over the past few games that day.

On the connectivity in the midfield against Cincinnati

It was loose, there was too much space. Cole [Bassett] and I got disconnected at times, and they have good players that come in and out of those areas. I think we put too much focus on [Luciano Acosta] and protecting that area, and it gave space in front of us. But we're learning from that. You learn from these games more than you learn from a win. And in the long run, I think this is going to benefit us because both Cole and I and everybody in the squad has a real growth mentality. We look hard at these games and figure out how we can be better next time.

On his consistent contributions, starts and impact in 2024

It's hard to place it on one thing, definitely, but a big part of it is just the focus that we're putting on my role in the team. I think identifying what that is and accepting it is really important. It's helpful to have a guy like Chris [Armas], who's been there, and played the six and he's helped me tremendously. The whole coaching staff has to learn that position because previously I was playing a bit higher, but I'm learning to love it, and I want to keep improving and become more of a threat defensively and keep helping get the ball to people like Djordje and our attacking players to score goals.

On facing NYCFC on a baseball field adapted for soccer

I'm sure it's a little bit different. But like I said, at the end of the day, like no excuses, it's still a field, you're still going out there to win. So we'll just go our hardest.


Head Coach Chris Armas

On the loss to FC Cincinnati

We're excited to get back to work. Again, it's a tough game for us. We know we played against a good team and in a tough place to play. We understood that when the year started that we're going to lose a few games and they're going to come in different ways. We lose a game at home against Houston in a weird fashion, and now we lose a game against a really good team. I reminded the guys after the game, that it's a team that won the Supporters' Shield last year––13-2-2 at home last year. They added some nice pieces in the offseason. So the shame we all felt is that, when you do play good teams, you can't let much slip. We weren't quite at our best. And there's little reasons for that. I also reminded the guys that on a night that maybe wasn't all of our best night, we still had a good response at halftime for the most part, we get back into the game, and then you're a play away from taking a draw on the night. Some points left out there that we'll go after and get ready for New York City.

On the injury updates for Connor Ronan and Jonathan Lewis

It's the first day we have them in on some possession games as neutrals on the outside, touching the ball, getting and feeling more a part of things. They both are in a pretty good place right now, doing a lot of noncontact stuff, but once you see guys floating as neutrals out here you know they're getting close. We certainly miss those guys and I'd be happy to get them back soon enough.

On making wholesale changes to the attacking three

We were trying to make the sub, we just needed the ball to go out right before that second goal, we had some guys ready to go in. We're used to altitude, not humidity. I don't tell the guys that before the game, that it's 80% humidity, but you can see that it had an effect. It had an effect on our pressing, on our repeat sprinting. Then all of a sudden, these unforced turnovers are coming from it––your brain melts a little bit. I've been there. So come 60, 65 minutes, you haven't really got the attack going. You haven't got the press going. We're getting stretched a little bit. You have half time to [give instruction] and then the next opportunity is sending the information with these [subs] and go and spark the game. I'm not a coach that waits until 80 minutes, 90 minutes to make a sub that's in for a few minutes. I'm aggressive that way. For the way we want to play, the demands physically, fresh legs, oftentimes it's something good to get hungry guys. We have discussions every week and it's close. We try to get guys out there and it always has to make sense. I don't think I've taken guys off while he's playing amazing. As a coaching staff, we look at the game, feel what's going on. We know what we're looking for and then we just act with logic.

On facing NYCFC at Citi Field for the first time

I have not [played or coached there]. It's always always been at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx. We've gotten the dimensions, it's very similar to what they do at Yankee Stadium. And it makes for an interesting game. Having coached in those games, I know what those games can look like. So it'll help prepare a bit. They've been really good lately, especially at home. We'll have another game, number 11 on the year and that's just a tough game against a good team.