A trip to the mountains and altitude of Colorado has Storylines intrigued by what Minnesota United will find in the Rockies, and how they’ll choose to attack the Rapids. Read on for the potential drama (or lack thereof) and so much more.
Goals, Goals, Goals
Much has been written on the pages of this website about the insanity of Minnesota’s 4-4 draw with Portland from the weekend. Among other things, it featured the most combined goals in a Loons game since August 2019, and was the third game in Minnesota’s MLS history to feature eight combined goals, tying the team record. One might think that Colorado would be a reprieve from such craziness; the Rapids had gone the entire season without either scoring or allowing more than three goals in a match, and had not played in a match featuring more than five combined goals…. Until Tuesday. The Rapids went to New York Red Bulls and battled to an even crazier 5-4 road victory, a game which featured five first-half goals and four more within the game’s final 15 minutes plus stoppage time. With both Minnesota and Colorado coming off their most explosive matches of the season, could we see more fireworks on Saturday night?
In that Colorado victory on Tuesday evening, Diego Rubio became the tenth player with double-digits goals in MLS this season, scoring his tenth goal of the season to open the Rapids’ scoring in the 21st minute. For the Rapids, that was the only goal of their five that came from an expected source. Their other four goalscorers on the evening, prior to Tuesday, had a combined one goal on the season, coming from Michael Barrios. Keegan Rosenberry, Dantouma Toure, and former Loon Collen Warner scored their first goals of the season to push Colorado to victory. The Rapids have not had the most success going forward this season, emphasized by the fact that Tuesday’s goals increased their complete season output by 20% in one game. However, could the goals scored by the many infrequent scorers provide confidence going forward to the Rapids? If so, Minnesota has many different threats to monitor as they attempt to regain their defensive prowess.
While Emanuel Reynoso’s dramatic goal-scoring spree kickstarted Minnesota’s winning ways, Luis Amarilla has taken the torch to continue pushing the Loons forward. Amarilla was named to the MLS Team of the Week after a season-best three combined goals and assists, including his first brace in Minnesota colors. In total, Amarilla has scored five goals and passed for three assists in Minnesota’s season-best seven match undefeated streak, with all three assists coming in the Loons’ last three games. Each of Minnesota’s three top goalscorers (Amarilla, Reynoso and Robin Lod) have scored their goals in spurts: Lod’s early in the season, Reynoso’s in the first half of July and now Amarilla most recently. One wonders what it would take to get all three firing at the same time, and how devastating a Minnesota attack featuring all three players (not to mention the unleashed Bongokuhle Hlongwane) could be to opposing defenses.
Colorado Rapids vs. Minnesota United FC
Dick’s Sporting Goods Park | Commerce City, Colorado
08.06.22 | MLS Game 24
8:00 pm CT (MLS LIVE on ESPN+, Bally Sports North EXTRA, The CW - Twin Cities, 1500 ESPN)