As the Rapids embarked on their first full-field contest of the year, new faces in burgundy got important minutes on the pitch with Rapids’ veterans, including striker Calvin Harris. 

Acquired from FC Cincinnati in the offseason, Harris joins the Rapids with a hunger to make a difference on the top line. Now that the English-born forward has collected time on the training grounds and between competitive lines, his wants are clear:

“Goals, goals, more goals,” Harris said. “I think those goals would have come in the game if I had some more time, but to try and create goals and score them for myself, and to get good performances under my belt. With that the goals will come and with that the team will play well.”

Harris saw 30 minutes on the pitch during the Rapids scrimmage with Celaya FC on Thursday, getting time to acclimate to his teammates’ playing styles in a real competition outside of training. 

His adjustment to his new team has been smooth since arriving in Denver, going through physicals and traveling to Querétaro for preseason. 

“It is going really well with transitioning because of the guys that are here, and how welcoming they've been for me,” he said. “Being out there today was another step in terms of getting accustomed to the team.”

Rapids head coach Robin Fraser noted the difficulty that comes along with being a new face in a sea of teammates’ with shared experience. The scrimmage with Celaya FC offered a comfortable yet competitive atmosphere to get new players’, like Harris’, feet wet with the team. 

“I think we saw for the most part pretty good performances, some guys excelled, some guys kind of met expectations,” he said after the scrimmage. “Overall, it's been tough for guys to come in and figure out how we're trying to play and we try to give them as much information as possible. But it's good to see guys taking the information on, especially the new guys.”

With two more scrimmages left to be played in Mexico before taking on another three opponents in Orlando, Harris is anticipating growth throughout the team’s play and his own difference-making performances up top. 

“I think the team did really well [today], it was a game where we found our feet,” he said. “It was the first time we've been in a match for a while since the break so you can see that everyone was getting their touches and getting their momentum going, especially in that first third, but we looked, we looked strong, you can definitely see with different individual performances as well that we look dangerous. For me, personally, it was just great being out there. I felt good. I felt sharp. And it was a shame that I wasn't able to get a goal in the third that I played, but now I feel really good. Now we just keep going, go on to the next one.”