Monday, March 15, 2010

End of an Era?

It's late and that's a pretentious headline but I do need to point out that wewantrapidman will no longer be taking the form it has. I have a new gig with mlsnet who are beefing up their digital content and have asked me to be the beat writer for them. It's a good opportunity for me and I will be devoting all my soccer writing efforts on Rapids stuff to that. They are in the middle of transforming the new site but all future Rapids material from me will be on Try checking out the old site at for now as bedding in happens. So, a big thank you to everyone who has supported this blog. Please come to my new home at MLS. I'm starting from this week and I will be covering things to the best of my ability all season.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Roster Changes; New Goalie And No Place For Diz

Press release from the Rapids today: Looks like Steward Ceus may not quite be ready to back up Pickens. It's also time to say goodbye to Facundo Diz. One of the nicest guys at the Rapids, he didn't really get a lot of chances. Wish him and his family all the best. Maybe the Rapids are lining up another striker to back up Casey and Cummings because the talk is that triallist, Devon Hodges, will not be getting a contract.
The Rapids are due to play Arsenal Reserves today in a crazy schedule that organizes the game against a top team barely 24 hours after landing in the home country.

COMMERCE CITY, Colo. (Tuesday, March 9, 2010) – The Colorado Rapids announced today the signing of goalkeeper Ian Joyce. Per club and league policies, financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Joyce will be added to the club’s senior roster pending receipt of his International Transfer Certificate (ITC). He is expected to join the team this week during the club’s preseason training in London, England.
The Rapids also announced several other roster moves, as the club released forward Facundo Diz and did not offer a contract to 2010 third round MLS SuperDraft pick defender Chad Borak.
The 24-year old goalkeeper and Seton Hall University product has played his entire professional career in England since joining Grays Athletic FC in 2007, then moving to Watford and most recently with Southend United. Joyce spent a brief trial stint with Colorado this preseason in February before signing with the club.
Ian Joyce – GoalkeeperHeight: 6-3
Weight: 200
Date of Birth: July 12, 1985
Hometown: Kinnelon, NJ
College: Seton Hall
Last Club: Southend United (England)
Roster Status: Senior
Colorado Rapids – Signed goalkeeper Ian Joyce; released forward Facundo Diz and did not offer a contract to defender Chad Borak.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Rapids Re-Sign Casey

Press release from the Rapids today:
COMMERCE CITY, Colo. (Thursday, March 4, 2010) – The Colorado Rapids announced today that forward CONOR CASEY has signed a new three-year contract, keeping the Denver-raised All-Star and United States national team forward in Colorado. Per club and league policies, financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Rapids Managing Director Jeff Plush made the announcement in a press conference held this afternoon at Casey’s alma mater of Denver South High School.
“Today is a banner day for the Rapids organization and we could not be more pleased with knowing that Conor will continue to represent our club with his professionalism and talents in his hometown,” said Plush. “With all his recent successes on the pitch, Conor faced many opportunities to return to playing overseas and for him to make the commitment to the Rapids speaks volumes of the direction our club is headed.”
“I’m really excited that the Rapids are committed to me and that my future is with this club,” said Casey. “I am looking forward to the coming years, as we continue to build something special. Having played in my hometown the last several seasons and now knowing I’m going to be staying here playing for my home club is a great feeling.”
“We’re thrilled to have Conor re-sign with his hometown team,” said Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber. “He was a dominant player during the 2009 MLS season and we hope to see him continue his success with the Rapids and with the U.S. national team.”

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Rapids to Unveil "Major Transaction" Tomorrow

Intriguing. The Colorado Rapids are set to unveil a "major player transaction" at Denver South High School tomorrow afternoon. The main thing that goes through my mind is that they are trading Conor Casey, a South High School graduate, to a major European club. But why would it be a picture opportunity if they are trading him? Unless they are swapping him for a big name from Europe? The South High School venue is the thing. The principal of the school will be in attendance. Looking forward to finding out and stay tuned for updates tomorrow afternoon. All will be revealed.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Stay of Execution For Some?

NEW YORK -- Major League Soccer issued the following statement Monday:
"MLS is delaying the roster compliance date, originally scheduled for March 1, while discussions continue over related topics with the MLS Players Union. The roster compliance date will be set in the next few weeks."
The next few weeks? Doesn't that take us to the start of the season? It may give some of the fringe players in each team a little more opportunity to show themselves but it can't be good for coaches who surely have made up their mind now as to who they want and who they don't want. The squad needs to be finalized sooner rather than later to build team morale and certainty.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Final Roster Forming as Deadline Approaches?

The Rapids return to Colorado today after not such a successful run out in the Arizona sun. Of the three games played against MLS teams, two were drawn and there was a 2-0 defeat at the hands of LA Galaxy. Hopefully, the trip helped Gary Smith solidify his thoughts on what to do come March 1 and the need to trim his roster down to its fighting weight of 24 players.
I'm not in Arizona and so have no idea of who is impressing, who isn't. What I can see from the line-ups is that some of the vulnerable players appear to be reacting in different ways. Mehdi Ballouchy, surely threatened by the advent of the two former New England players, Larentowicz and Thompson, appears to have impressed while Pat Noonan played very little. I wouldn't mind betting that Noonan is not much longer for Rapids' world.
There were also some unfamiliar names in there; Rolan De La Cruz and Andy Lorie. Devon Hodges, playing alonside fellow Jamaican international, Omar Cummings, seemed to get a lot of playing time. And what about notable absentees? Colin Clark is probably still rehabbing his ligament injury and so didn't make the trip. New signing Danny Earls wasn't in Arizona. There is no Pablo and big signing Larentowicz was also absent. Facundo Diz also appeared to not make the trip.
I'll try and get some updates on all this later this week. The Rapids fly out to London March 7 for another preseason trip to the homeland.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Rapids Confirm Earls and Murillo Signing

Press release from the Colorado Rapids today: The Colorado Rapids announced today the signings of defender/midfielder Danny Earls and defender Oscar Murillo. Per club and league policies, financial terms of the transactions were not disclosed.
Earls and Murillo will be added to the club’s senior roster pending receipt of their International Transfer Certificates (ITC).
Earls comes to Colorado after two seasons with the USL-1 Rochester Rhinos. The 20-year old from Dublin, Ireland gained significant experience while playing with English Premier League side Aston Villa’s Reserve squad from 2005-2008. Earls has also been capped as a member of the Republic of Ireland's U15, U16, U18 and U19 National Teams.
Murillo joins the Rapids following two seasons with Deportes Quindio of Colombia’s top professional league, where he scored two goals and registered eight assists in 42games. The 21-year old has played professionally with Argentina’s famed Boca Juniors, Centauros Villavicencio in the Colombian Second Division, and Club Atlético Lanús of the Argentine Primera Division. On the international side, he has also been a member of Colombia’s U15 through U20 National Teams.
Both players will join the club in Colorado as the Rapids are in the midst of their preseason training camp at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.

Danny Earls – Defender/ Midfielder Height: 5-9
Weight: 160
DOB: April 22, 1989
Hometown: Dublin, Ireland
College: None
Last Club: Rochester Rhinos (USL-1)
Roster Status: Senior/International

Oscar Murillo – Defender Height: 6-0
Weight: 175
DOB: April 18, 1988
Hometown: Armenia, Colombia
College: None
Last Club: Deportes Quindio (Colombia)
Roster Status: Senior/International