The 2020 MLS regular season has been a roller coaster for the Colorado Rapids, having had five straight matches cancelled because of a COVID-19 outbreak. I talked with Abbie from the Burgundy Wave to get a sense of what’s going on ahead of the match with the Seattle Sounders.
Sounder at Heart: So, this is a really weird season for the Rapids. What’s it been like being a fan during this roller coaster?
Burgundy Wave: It’s been a tough season for Rapids fans. We came into 2020 with a lot of hope after Robin Fraser took over last season and they started with a road win and a home win, which was great. Then the MLS is Back Tournament happened and they struggled to get going again, which really shook everyone’s confidence. Getting a big (first) win in Sandy against RSL and bringing home the Rocky Mountain Cup was huge and right as the Rapids were picking up momentum, the COVID-19 outbreak ran through the club. But now, here we are, with a real possibility at the playoffs, so hopefully it will all end well.
The biggest downside is that fans aren’t allowed in the stadium and many fans can’t watch the games due to Altitude’s issues with local cable companies. It’s a very big pain point for fans and has really affected local enthusiasm for the club.
SAH: The Rapids traded away Kei Kamara this season. Who is the most goal dangerous player for Colorado?
BW: While Kei Kamara was a dangerous aerial threat, other guys have stepped up in his place and it hasn’t really been an issue. Cole Bassett was on a hot streak before the COVID-19 outbreak, with three goals and two assists in four games. If Diego Rubio gets in a groove, he can be dangerous. Jonathan Lewis has been getting more time lately and scored two goals in two games before the break. And you can’t count out Andre Shinyashiki, so for once, the Rapids have a few scoring options.
SAH: I was really happy to see Robin Fraser finally get a head coaching gig in MLS. How’s he been doing in Colorado and what are some key takeaways from his first season?
BW: Robin Fraser is generally well-liked by fans and has done a decent job so far. They almost squeaked into the playoffs last year and this year has been so weird that I think it’s difficult to really take much away, to be honest. There have been questions about his game management and usage of subs, as he typically waits until pretty late in the game to sub players in and it doesn’t usually work out well. Other than that, he’s made some smart roster decisions and never wavers in his belief in the players. Assuming things get somewhat back to normal next season, I think that will be a bigger indication of what Fraser and this club are capable of.
My answers to Abbie’s questions can be found here.