Tonight, the Rapids are set to take on Austin FC in the club's first-ever match against the expansion side. The Rapids will have a bit of extra motivation, as they will be playing in front of home fans at DICK'S Sporting Goods Park for the first time since March 7, 2020. Last game, the Rapids opened the 2021 season with a 0-0 draw against FC Dallas on the road at Toyota Stadium. Follow the Live Blog below all game long for live coverage straight from Commerce City, Colo.
The starting lineup tonight remains the same as last week, with Sebastian Anderson serving as the only bench addition. Anderson was recalled earlier today from the Colorado Springs Switchbacks.
Starting XI: William Yarbrough, Keegan Rosenberry, Danny Wilson, Auston Trusty, Kellyn Acosta, Cole Bassett, Jack Price, Younes Namli, Michael Barrios, Diego Rubio, Andre Shinyashiki
Bench: Sebastian Anderson, Nicolas Benezet, Clint Irwin, Oliver Larraz, Jonathan Lewis, Nicolás Mezquida, Drew Moor, Colin Warner, Darren Yapi
1' - Aaaaaand they're off! This is the first time Barrios will play in front of the home fans, and, surprisingly, the same is true for Yarbrough. His first start at DSGP came after the quarantine rules came into effect.
3' - Bassett is showing some early spark. It's good to see him displaying high-energy play to start off.
4' - Nice move by Yarbrough to save a ball from going out of bounds and prevent the corner. He's rewarded by cheers from the Rapids section behind him.
8' - Wilson has a quality defensive stop, and then the Rapids transition nicely into offense. Namli plays a long ball to Barrios who is streaking down the flank, and he hits in Rubio, who finds Namli again just outside the 18-yard box, but the midfielder's first-time hit doesn't go as planned. All around, it was a very smooth transition for the Rapids.
10' - Very nice recovery from Trusty. Rosenberry and Acosta were cheating up on offense, and a turnover at midfield led to a 4-v-2 in favor of Austin. The center back stays calm, cool, and collected, and easily cut off the counter in its tracks.
12' - The Rapids nearly get one on their first very dangerous possession of the game. Rubio plays in Bassett, back to Rubio, whose first-time strike sails just over the net.
16' - Barrios finds Bassett down the line, and he crosses it in, but Austin sends it out for a corner. Price's outswinger is headed toward net by Wilson, but the 'keeper makes the save. Good to see Wilson is staying dangerous in the air, similar to last weekend.
18' - The Austin 'keeper plays with it a little too long, and Barrios makes his move. He charges and nearly gains possession. That is a perfect example of the type of hustle play Rapids fans are going to love to continue to see from the speedy forward.
23' - What appears to be a knee injury to Ben Sweat forces Austin into their first substitution of the game. Sweat is unfortunately carried off the field.
28' - A second start in a row looks to have given Trusty even more confidence. He has looked strong on the ball, and his physicality in the air proves to be an asset once again, as he heads an Austin attack out of bounds.
32' - Namli plays a quality through ball to Barrios on the right side, who plays on Rubio in the center, but the Austin's 'keeper makes a nice decision coming out, and the 1-v-1 is deflected out of bounds. Good combination play as the Rapids are heating up.
36' - Rubio is really looking solid today. He comes back past midfield and turns his man and plays a great ball down the right flank to Barrios, who is, as always, streaking athletically down the side. His shot is sent out by Austin for a corner.
36' - GOAL - Shinyashiki sinks Price's outswinger for the Rapids' first goal of the year! And the crowd, for the first time in over 400 days, goes wild. Rapids lead 1-0.
40 - CARD - Shinyashiki uses his hands a bit too much on his man and is given a yellow by the referee.
42' - Bassett continues to show that a lifetime of playing soccer in Colorado means altitude doesn't slow him down. He possesses through the middle of the field and finds Acosta on the left side, but his cross isn't met by anyone on the home squad.
45' + 4' - The whistle blows for the end of the half
45' - And we're back. The Rapids not only lead on the scoreboard with a goal, but they are stacking up well on the stats sheet, too. The team fired nine shots in the first half, three on goal, compared to Austin's three shots, with one on frame.
47' - CARD - Price earns a yellow.
48' - A foul against Wilson leads to an Austin free kick just outside the box. Austin goes for a hard strike that hits the top corner of the near post. That was definitely Austin's best chance of the game so far.
50' - The Rapids are now shooting toward a sea of the home fans this half, and the energy they are providing is palpable. A long ball is played to Barrios, and it looks like it's just too far, but he keeps it in bounds with sheer work ethic. He's met with a roar from the supporters.
55' - Things are getting a little spicy, with a foul called and disregarded due to advantage for Bassett and then seconds later another foul on Shinyashiki that sends him to the ground. Price lines up from about 30 yards out, and lofts it in to Wilson, and it's a nice header, but Austin stops it.
60' - GOAL - A disappointing swing in momentum for the Rapids who appeared just on the verge of a second. Austin scores their first goal in club history after sinking a cross that found Fagundez open. Even game, 1-1.
62' - Solid defensive effort from Acosta, who tracks back stride for stride with his man and slides in to win the ball at the perfect moment. Austin takes exception and promptly fouls Acosta on the next play.
66' - SUBSTITUTION - It's Jonny Lewis time. The forward comes in for Barrios. Time for some late-game heroics from Lewis, perhaps?
67' - GOAL - Dominguez takes Wilson on, Wilson loses his footing, and Dominguez proceeds to shoot and score. Austin takes the lead, 2-1.
71' - GOAL - A defensive breakdown leads to another Austin goal. Austin up 3-1.
72' - SUBSTITUTION - More offensive substitutions for the Rapids who will look to make a comeback in the remaining minutes. Nicolas Mezquida and Nicolas Benezet replace Cole Bassett and Andre Shinyashiki, respectively.
80' - Namli receives the ball just outside the box in the center of the field and quickly finds Lewis, who takes a strike from the right side. Stuver makes a diving save on what was a good effort from Lewis to give the Rapids a bit of a spark.
90' - Yarbrough makes a great stop 1-v-1 with an Austin forward.