COMMERCE CITY, Colo. ― Following Sunday’s win against Vancouver, the Colorado Rapids (1-1-1, 4 pts.) return to DICK’S Sporting Goods Park to host Minnesota United FC (0-3-0, 0pts) on Saturday, May 8. Kickoff is set for 8 PM, and fans can tune into the live stream on ColoradoRapids.com/live or on the Altitude Radio stream on AltitudeSportsRadio.com. The match will also be broadcast live on Sirius XM FC.
“We’re looking forward to coming back home and playing in front of our fans once again,” Rapids head coach Robin Fraser said. “Obviously, we didn’t play as well as we would’ve liked to last time [at home against Austin] and certainly looking forward to the opportunity to once again showcase who we are. Having said that, Minnesota is a very good team. They have some very good players. The fact that they haven’t won yet is really irrelevant; they’re still a very good team. We’re going to need to be really sharp in all areas of the field.”
The Rapids enter Saturday’s match after battling to a 1-0 win over Vancouver Whitecaps FC. In the 26th minute, forward Diego Rubio unleashed a wicked free kick into the top corner that was the eventual game-winner. 21-year-old defender Sam Vines made his season debut at left back after returning from injury, playing a full 90 minutes in the clean sheet victory. The match was played in Vancouver’s temporary home of Rio Tinto Stadium in Utah while travel restrictions between the U.S. and Canada remain in place.
Rubio’s strike was nominated for MLS Goal of the Week and earned him a spot on the MLS Team of the Week bench alongside goalkeeper William Yarbrough, who made three saves to earn his second shutout of the season, making the Rapids the only team in the league with two clean sheets from as many road games this season.
Yarbrough benefited from the continued strong play of his back line, which featured defender Auston Trusty as a starter for the third consecutive match, marking the longest stretch the 22-year-old has been on the pitch in his Rapids career. Midfielder Kellyn Acosta, who filled in for Vines at left back in Colorado’s first two matches, returned to his natural central midfield role against Vancouver. Acosta is tied for fourth in MLS with nine tackles won and leads the team with eight interceptions.
Minnesota visits Colorado winless through three matches this season. The Loons started the year with a 4-0 loss at Seattle Sounders FC before dropping home matches to Real Salt Lake and, most recently, Austin FC. Minnesota’s lone goal came from Robin Lod in the 2-1 loss to RSL. The Loons are the only team in MLS not to pick up a point so far this season.
The Rapids and Loons are among the highest shooting teams in MLS, with Colorado ranking fourth in MLS with 46 shots and Minnesota third with 53. However, where the Rapids are fifth with 18 shots on target, the Loons are tied for 20th in the league with just nine shots on target. Colorado will look to extend its streak of 25 consecutive matches with a goal scored at home, the longest active streak in MLS.
This will be the first of three meetings between these clubs. The Loons visit again on July 7 before the Rapids head to Allianz Field on Aug. 4. Colorado and Minnesota met three times last year, including Minnesota’s win in the first round of the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs. The Loons are winless from three matches at DICK’S Sporting Goods Park since entering MLS in 2017 (0W-2L-1D).
“You have to be motivated to win every single game, no matter who you play against,” midfielder Younes Namli said. “But of course, we have something to set straight from last season and from the last home game. We have to keep that energy, bring the confidence from the last game. Saturday hopefully you guys will see that.”
News & Notes
- Colorado’s streak of 25 matches with a goal scored at home (not including MLS is Back Tournament) is the longest active streak in MLS. Seattle Sounders FC is next closest, with a goal in 20 consecutive official matches at CenturyLink/Lumen Field.
- The Rapids are fourth in MLS with 46 shots attempted and fifth with 18 shots on target. Minnesota is third with 53 shots attempted, but 20th with just nine shots on target.
- The Rapids are 2-0-1 (W-L-D) all-time at home against Minnesota United and have won their last two meetings against the Midwestern side at DICK'S Sporting Goods Park.
- D Keegan Rosenberry is second in MLS with 93.1 percent passing accuracy and fourth with 88.64 percent passing accuracy in the opponent’s half among players with at least 100 successful passes.
- F Diego Rubio’s goal at Vancouver was the 30th of his MLS career. It was the first direct free kick goal scored by a Rapids player since Rubio scored against FC Dallas in September 2019. The Rapids are 8-2-3 (W-L-D) when Rubio scores since he joined the team in 2019.
- D Auston Trusty has started and played 90 minutes in each of Colorado’s last four regular season matches, marking the longest stretch the 22-year-old has been on the pitch in his Rapids career. In 2018 while with Philadelphia, Trusty became the youngest player in MLS history to play all 3,060 minutes in a season.