Sporting Kansas City vs Colorado Rapids | Takeaways | May 5, 2018

Sometimes it feels like you can’t catch a break

The Rapids had their chance to steal a result and a precious road point. It came in the 81st minute following a good stretch of play for the visitors. Dominique Badji muscled through and bounced off a few defenders and it looked for a second as if his half-chance had passed. But a Rapids’ bounce saw the ball drop to the feet of Badji with nobody to beat but KC ‘keeper Tim Melia. In past seasons, Badji might have hesitated or tried to use his athleticism to take a few dribbles and beat the last man. In his fourth season, now a confident and lethal goalscorer, Badji didn’t hesitate. He knew what he wanted to do, where he wanted to put his shot. He’s learned that in that moment, you can’t flinch. He certainly didn’t, but his shot curled it just inches wide of the post. It’s one Badji will play over in his mind a thousand times between the 81st minute Saturday and his next goal, whenever it comes. Here’s betting Dom puts the SKC miss behind him and gets on the scoresheet next Saturday against the New York Red Bulls.

 


 

It was a quiet debut for Sam Nicholson

The newest addition to the Rapids arrived in Colorado late Wednesday and was in the starting lineup Saturday evening in Kansas City. With Johan Blomberg and Shkëlzen Gashi still sidelined due to injury, Nicholson’s new boss saw enough on tape and in training to give the midfielder the start. In 67 minutes of play, Nicholson was focused mostly on his defensive duties. He joined the attacked and flashed glimpses of his pace and technical ability, but in all it was a quiet and uneventful debut for the Scotsman.

 


 

Tim Howard crossed yet another milestone

When all is said and done, Howard’s career accomplishment list will take quite a chunk of time to both construct and read. The Rapids’ captain added another bullet point to that list when he notched his 600th career save in MLS on Saturday night. The stop came in the 20th minute after Sporting’s Johnny Russell caught a half-volley cleanly from just outside the penalty area. Howard was well positioned and didn’t allow a rebound. It was a routine save in a career that’s been anything but. Howard flashed his brilliance later in the match to keep the Rapids within a goal, finishing with four saves on the night. His best came when he quickly got down to deny long-time US teammate Graham Zusi from close range. It was a stop that should show up in the MLS Save of the Week voting next week. For me, nearly two years after he joined the club, watching the greatest goalkeeper in US history is still a gift each and every time he pulls on the shirt. Enjoy him while he’s here Rapids fans, he’s an all-timer.

 

 

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