Colorado Rapids

Preview | Rapids aim for season sweep of San Jose 


The Colorado Rapids welcome San Jose Earthquakes to DICK’S Sporting Goods Park on Saturday night for the two sides’ second and final meeting of the 2024 regular season for Matchday 13. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. MT (Apple TV— MLS Season Pass, Altitude Sports Radio 950AM).

Colorado enters the match after a motivating win in New York, defeating NYCFC at Citi Field 0-2 to snap the home side’s five-game unbeaten streak. Rafael Navarro opened the scoring in Queens after a moment of transition in the 16th minute. An overlapping combination between Kévin Cabral and Cole Bassett led to Bassett’s one-touch lofting cross into Navarro on the far side of the 18, who then sent a curling shot into the top right corner of the NYCFC goal. The goal marked Navarro’s second goal in the run of play this season and his fifth overall. The Brazilian striker now leads the team in goals scored.

Bassett iced the game with a goal of his own in the 86th minute, forcing a turnover in the final third and laying the ball off to Calvin Harris at the top of the box. With two NYCFC men on his back, Harris laid the ball off to Bassett’s overlapping run into the box to set up for the Colorado Homegrown’s slotting shot to the low far post past goalkeeper Matt Freese. Bassett’s performance earned the midfielder a spot on the Team of the Matchday Starting XI.

Navarro and Bassett have scored nine of the team’s 12 goals on the road this season with Navarro recording five and Bassett adding four. The pair have recorded all of their goals within the same matches, including the games against Real Salt Lake, Inter Miami CF, San Jose Earthquakes and NYCFC.

The shutout in New York marked goalkeeper Zack Steffen’s second clean sheet of the season and the first time the Rapids bested NYCFC in club history. The Colorado lineup tallied 26 clearances from the box, 16 interferences and held the home side to just three shots on target.

San Jose travels to Colorado with a recent MLS win of their own, as well as an Open Cup victory. The Northern California side defeated LAFC 3-1 at Levi’s Stadium last weekend in a match that saw goals from Rodrigues, Amahl Pellegrino and an own goal from a Cristian Espinoza corner kick. They then faced another Californian club, Oakland Roots SC, in the 2024 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Round of 32 on Wednesday night. San Jose came away with the 1-0 win at PayPal Park after an early second-half goal from Ousseni Bouda.

The Earthquakes will arrive to altitude on weary legs, despite switching up their starting lineups between the two games played in the last six days. Colorado holds a 2-1-1 record at home so far this season and will use the environment and the visitors’ busy schedule to its advantage in search of three points at home. Newcomer and DP signing Hernán López can bolster the attack for his new team after arriving from Argentine Primera División side Godoy Cruz late last month. López appeared for the ‘Quakes for the first time as a second-half substitution against LAFC and tallied all 90 minutes in Wednesday’s match against the Roots.

Saturday’s contest will be the second and final match between Colorado and San Jose in the regular season this year after the Rapids earned their first shutout of the season at PayPal Park in April, playing to a 0-3 result. Navarro recorded a brace in the match, his first for the Rapids, and Bassett notched the third and final goal of the game against former Colorado goalkeeper, William Yarbrough.