Capping off the first of two Arizona-based preseason training camps, Colorado Rapids Soccer club fell 2-0 to Sporting Kansas City on Saturday at the Phoenix Rising Soccer Complex.
With temperatures in the mid-80s, new head coach Anthony Hudson selected a starting 11 which featured captain Tim Howard, as well Stefan Aigner, Dominique Badji, Nana Boateng, Edgar Castillo, Kortne Ford, Marlon Hairston, Eric Miller, Axel Sjöberg and Sam Hamilton. Rounding out the starters was the club’s fourth round draft pick, Niki Jackson, who spent his collegiate years at nearby Grand Canyon University.
Playing in just their second preseason scrimmage under Hudson, the Rapids started strong, nearly taking the lead on an early header from Badji. Following two goals from Sporting Kansas City midway through, the teams headed to their respective locker rooms at 2-0.
Fifteen minutes in to the second stanza, the Rapids opted for mass substitutions, bringing on Micheal Azira, Johan Blomberg, Caleb Calvert, Kip Colvey, Zac MacMath, trialist Enzo Martinez, Jack McBean, Ricardo Perez, Dillon Serna, Jared Watts, Alan Winn (75’), and off-season signing Deklan Wynne. The new 11 brought increased energy to the proceedings, but could not find the back of the net. The match would finish 2-0 after 120 minutes.
The Rapids now head home to Colorado for two full days, before returning to Arizona for a 10-day preseason training camp in Tucson. Expected to join the club in Tucson are new signings Jack Price – who joins the Burgundy from English Championship leaders Wolverhampton Wanderers – as well as New Zealand international Tommy Smith.
Colorado Rapids 0-2 Sporting Kansas City
February 3, 2018 – Salt River, AZ
First Half: Stefan Aigner, Dominique Badji, Nana Boateng, Edgar Castillo, Kortne Ford, Sam Hamilton, Marlon Hairston, Niki Jackson, Tim Howard, Eric Miller, Axel Sjöberg,
Second Half: Micheal Azira, Johan Blomberg, Caleb Calvert, Kip Colvey, Zac MacMath, Enzo Martinez, Jack McBean, Ricardo Perez, Dillon Serna, Jared Watts, Alan Winn (75’), Deklan Wynne.