It’s been less than a month since Mark-Anthony Kaye’s blockbuster move to the Rapids from LAFC, but you wouldn’t guess it from his performances on the pitch so far.
The Canadian international was named to the MLS Team of the Week for Week 21 following his game-winning goal against Real Salt Lake in the second leg of the Rocky Mountain Cup on Saturday night. Kaye was instrumental for the Burgundy Boys, playing all 90 minutes, recording the highest pass completion percentage of all Rapids with at least 60 minutes played (95.7%) and capping the night off with his first goal for the club to keep Colorado alive in their quest to hold onto the Rocky Mountain Cup.
“The goal was absolutely top-class given where we were in the moment,” said Rapids head coach Robin Fraser after the match. “It was a fantastic run. The timing of it—he could’ve easily gone too soon and Braian [Galvan] is not ready to play the ball yet. He could’ve been there late, but his timing was exceptional based on where the ball was in relation to Braian and Braian had the wherewithal to pick him up and hit the absolute perfect cross. The timing was excellent, the header was clinical, and for the time of the game where it was, us surging a bit and the crowd being into it, couldn’t have been a better moment.”
“We have some talented guys out wide and Braian’s one of them and I know he’s left-footed so I knew that if he cut back onto his left that he was going to put the ball in the box and I need to make a late run, so it worked out perfectly,” said Kaye of his goal.
The win over RSL marked the Rapids’ third in a row, extending their unbeaten run to five games and lifting the club to third in the Western Conference, just five points behind leaders Seattle but with two games in hand.
Next up for Colorado is a trip to second-place Sporting Kansas City on Saturday, August 28, in a pivotal match at the top of the Western Conference (7 p.m. MT/Altitude).
Breaking Down Kaye's First Rapids Goal
MLS Team of the Week - Week 21:
F – Adam Buksa (NE), Jeremy Ebobisse (SJ)
M – Marcelino Moreno (ATL), Rodolfo Pizarro (MIA), Ryan Gauld (VAN), Mark-Anthony Kaye (COL), Diego Fagundez (ATX)
D – Leandro Gonzalez Pirez (MIA), Xavier Arreaga (SEA), Antonio Carlos (ORL)
GK – Tim Melia (SKC)
Coach – Matias Almeyda (SJ)
Bench – Maxime Crepeau (VAN), Nkosi Tafari (DAL), Luciano Abecasis (SJ), Joao Paulo (SEA), Quinn Sullivan (PHI), Tajon Buchanan (NE), Sebastian Driussi (ATX)
On-Field Reaction: Mark-Anthony Kaye