Colorado Rapids, Roster Updates

Rapids cut Gashi and acquire Green Card for Nicholson

The Colorado Rapids revealed Friday that the club has opted to waive Albanian Designated Player Shkëlzen Gashi. Additionally, Sam Nicholson appears to have acquired a Green Card during the off-season – a development first reported by the Endline Podcast Thursday morning.

Finalizing the two roster adjustments was necessary for Colorado to meet MLS’s domestic player restrictions for the 2019 regular season. Heading into preseason, the club had eight international players and only six spots to utilize.

A source familiar with the decision to waive Gashi’s contract acknowledged that the forward had not performed well enough in preseason to justify inclusion on the regular season roster. Gashi was not cut because Colorado has imminent plans to acquire another Designated Player (though this move does make a high-budget summer addition possible). Rather, the Albanian international simply failed to impress in training – leaving management no other option besides waiving the player.

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Colorado Rapids, Roster Updates

With two internationals too many, the Rapids are not yet roster compliant

One of the seemingly-never-ending quirks of the MLS offseason is the pseudo-drama that arises from front offices desperately attempting to make their rosters compliant in advance of their club’s season openers. While Colorado does not face the problem of moving a fourth designated player that nobody wants, the Rapids still have some work to do in order to fulfill the arduous regulations enforced on MLS clubs.

A month from their season opener, the Colorado Rapids appear to be in need of two additional international slots.

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Colorado Rapids, Game Recaps

Colorado fights back twice to draw with L.A.

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Colorado extended their undefeated streak to three games as the Rapids fought back from two deficits to secure a vital road draw against the L.A. Galaxy Tuesday night.

“I’m just incredibly proud of how the team has been working over the last five-six games,” manager Anthony Hudson said of the 2-2 result, “from start to finish really I think we were the better team, I think we controlled the game, so I’m pleased for the players because they needed that.”

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Colorado Rapids, Game Recaps

Howard, Boateng shine in another late Rapids win

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Colorado secured consecutive victories for the first time in 2018 and Bismarck ‘Nana’ Adjei-Boateng scored his first goal in burgundy as the Rapids defeated San Jose Earthquakes 2-1 on a beautiful summer Saturday night at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.

The Rapids needed yet another stoppage time effort to defeat their fellow Western Conference bottom-dwellers, a result which finds Colorado eleven points below the red line with eleven games left in the regular season.

“I wish it wasn’t another late one,” Manager Anthony Hudson lamented post-match, “the game should’ve been put away in the first half.”

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Colorado Rapids, Roster Updates

Michael Azira traded to Montreal Impact

The Colorado Rapids have traded midfielder Micheal Azira to the Montreal Impact “in exchange for a fourth round pick in the 2020 MLS SuperDraft,” according to an official announcement made by the club Wednesday afternoon.

The news breaks seven days after the Rapids loaned Azira to USL’s Colorado Springs Switchbacks. The Ugandan native made one appearance for the second division side (started in a 2-0 win against Oklahoma City Energy).

The midfielder never seemed capable of passing Jack Price and Danny Wilson on Colorado’s depth chart at his position. Azira only made five league appearances for the Rapids in the 2018 MLS season, tallying a mere 275 minutes of playing time.

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Colorado Rapids, Transfer Rumors

Report: Colorado finalizing deal to acquire Edgar Castillo permanently

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The Colorado Rapids are in “advanced talks” to acquire left fullback Edgar Castillo from C.F. Monterrey on a permanent basis, according to a deadline-day report authored by John Rojas at Diario AS. Castillo – who has made twenty-two appearances for the Rapids after joining the club on loan from Los Rayados – would be rewarded with a multi-year contract if the deal is completed.

The news follows a 2-1 victory against the L.A. Galaxy, a game where the Mexican-American assisted the match-winning goal in front of a raucous crowd that included the defender’s agent, Chris Barbosa (Fútbol Marketing Group). Attacking contributions are not uncommon for the fullback, as Castillo has recorded two goals and three assists on the season, despite occupying a primarily-defensive role.

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Colorado Rapids, Game Recaps

Rapids shock Galaxy in deserved, come-from-behind victory

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A ninetieth minute effort from Sam Nicholson secured Colorado’s first win in over a month as the Rapids fought back from a goal down to defeat the L.A. Galaxy 2-1, shattering the Southern Californians’ nine-game unbeaten streak.

“A thing we’ve had all season that we saw tonight is having to create our own belief,” Manager Anthony Hudson explained after the match. “When we actually back ourselves and play positive and aggressive and most importantly as a team, when we’re like that – we give ourselves belief and that’s what we got tonight.”

Belief was certainly necessary for a Rapids side that controlled the match from the start, but found themselves down a goal midway through the first half at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.

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