Colorado Rapids

Recap | Rapids rally for late equalizer in historic first meeting against Inter Miami


The Big Picture 

The Colorado Rapids fought until the dying minutes on Saturday night to earn a 2-2 draw against the reigning Leagues Cup champions, Inter Miami CF. The result extended their unbeaten run on the road to three consecutive matches (1-0-2).

Rafael Navarro was first to get on the board, converting a penalty kick just before the end of the first half.

As the second half kicked off, Miami’s Lionel Messi evened the score in the 58th minute, followed immediately by a go-ahead goal from Leonardo Frugis Afonso two minutes later. As the end of 90 minutes approached, it was Colorado Homegrown Player Cole Bassett who gave the team its equalizer off an assist from Calvin Harris.

The Rapids return to Colorado with a point in hand as they prepare for their next contest against San Jose Earthquakes on Saturday, April 13.


  • Lamine Diack made his Colorado Rapids and MLS debut, subbing on at the 85th minute.
  • F Kévin Cabral registered more than 21 minutes tonight, surpassing 5,000 regular-season minutes in MLS (5,043).
  • The Colorado Rapids have won eight points from losing positions in the MLS this season, more than any other team.
  • The Colorado Rapids’ win tonight extended their unbeaten streak on the road to three matches (1-0-2).
  • The Colorado Rapids have scored four goals in the last 15 minutes of the second half, no team has more in MLS this season.
  • The Colorado Rapids have scored in six of their seven games in the MLS this season.

Select postgame quotes transcribed below.


\On the match: \

“Well, every single day I talk about winning and winning behaviors and habits, and I tell the players like I tell my own children, they’re winners, and in a relatively short time it’s just a real strong mentality. The team believes that we can be hard to beat, and we will try to play against anybody. So, it's a good point on the road for us. We knew it would be tough, we knew we'd see their strong team at some point on the night and you can see how things change quickly against some of the best players in the world. So, we don't really want to make a habit of going down, but we do want to make a habit to be able to come back in games, players that cannot give in and give up. As a coaching staff and as the head coach to remain aggressive and push, push for goals and wins and to be aggressive. So yeah, it's a positive step. We leave there feeling good, and I leave there knowing we have a lot of work to do if I'm being realistic here. The last part is to see hundreds of our fans here. It is special to see the guys once again celebrating with them after hard earned points and lots of family members in the stands from our boys. It's a good night.”

\On the significance of facing Lionel Messi, Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba: \

“Well, imagine the preparation this week. If Messi plays, if Messi doesn't play, we don't try to confuse the guys and overwhelm them with so much information. If you know that they're playing, then you can really be specific of how to go about that. So, then it's at the last, an hour before you find out they're not starting so what becomes the message right? So, we didn't flood them with too much information and anxiety in that way. So, at halftime we knew that they'd come on, so we talked a bit more, but it gets real, real fast. I actually think we had a good start to the game in a lot of ways, but we just weren't sharp enough, so we don't take care of the ball on one end, which means we won't create enough goalscoring chances and we leave ourselves to transition just a few moments. It feels a little frustrating because we think we can do better. In the second half, it just goes in waves now we're caught in transition, Messi is on the pitch, it becomes a little bit back and forth, which personally I think we all like control but I kind of like when it gets out of control sometimes because I think our guys can run and then we can play with verticality. As a team, we'll get to that, we're trying to add a lot. I'm proud that the coaches stayed aggressive for all of them and myself. We tried Calvin [Harris] up top, we tried Djordje [Mihailovic] up there. We just tried to stay aggressive, to try to push, we got rewarded and almost got the winner.”


On the match:

“Yeah, a tough one. We didn’t feel like we started too well in the first half. I think a lot of guys were nervous to be fair. We have quite a young squad and a lot of these guys have grown up watching those guys play. In the first half, they weren’t out there, and I think we could have started a lot better and up the tempo a bit more. I think we were giving the ball away too cheaply. Obviously, when we score at the end of the half, that was well done. When they came on, Messi and them, they made a difference but again, if the guys don’t fold, don’t get nervous, we are not breaking down when something happens to us, we stand right back up and get the draw. Would have loved three points, but we will take the one.”

On playing against Lionel Messi:

“Yeah, it was a special game. I grew up, Barcelona was my favorite team from like 2011 to probably 2015 when that team was on fire and all those guys were playing there. They were my favorite to watch. So, it is special when you look at it, but at the same time, I know we have a young team, and many guys were looking at him like, oh, they idolize him a bit. A few of us older ones that have played in bigger games against bigger players tried to change that mentality into this an opportunity to show ourselves. A lot of people watch these games across the world now and it's an opportunity for yourself to show the rest of the world that you deserve to be here and deserve to be on this field. So I think that was obviously big for us."