The team is back home after the two games last week in KC. On Sunday, April 18 the Rapids will welcome Toronto FC for a 3 pm MT kickoff at Dick's Sporting Goods Park. Click here to read a bunch of notes on the matchup. Here's the official game notes provided to TV.
Some other notes to bring you up on:
- Goalkeeper Steward Ceus, who made his official Rapids debut in the 2-1 win over KC on Tuesday, has returned to the Charlotte Eagles - the team to which he's been loaned to. Ian Joyce, who backed up starting keeper Matt Pickens in the season opener, has returned from an ankle injury that required us to call Ceus back for the Chicago and Kansas City games.
- Defender Rob Valentino has been waived. We had been considering a loan to Tampa Bay, but it turned out that it was in the best interest to cut ties. Although Rob was a Generation adidas player, his contract was created in a way which allowed for such a release.
- With that note, Claudio Lopez will use #7, which up until last week Valentino had occupied.
- We also want to clarify one error. At Tuesday's game, the stats crew, media, and it seems like everyone that observed the Rapids' game-winning goal had Claudio Lopez with the assist. We talked to Claudio and other players that were nearby on the play, and they all confirmed that Claudio fed Mehdi Ballouchy, who advanced the ball to Wells Thompson for the winner. Thus, Mehdi will go down as having the only official assist on the play (U.S. Soccer registers at max one assist per goal).
- Staying on that topic, this week it was determined - by coin toss - that the Rapids will play the next play-in game for the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup on the road. New York will host Philadelphia on April 27, with the winner hosting the New England Revolution on May 12. The Rapids will play at one of those three locations (before June 9), with the winner advancing to the U.S. Open Cup Round of 16.
- Fans should know that the visiting supporters section at Dick's Sporting Goods Park has been moved from section 136 to the top rows of section 121.
- The Rapids away game at Chicago originally scheduled for May 22 has been moved to Wed. June 9. TV details still to come.
- If you're coming to the game on Sunday, join us in the Cantina for the pre-game TV show and / or Marcelo Balboa's post-game From the Pitch radio show, sponsored by Dick's Sporting Goods.
- The Denver Post's coverage: Lopez Brings Unpredictability. Balboa on the '09 Rapids.
- Get to know a little more about the Ginger Ninja by listening to Six Questions with Class IV, an interview with Jeff Larentowicz. Click here to listen.
- American Soccer News: "is ultra-positive, ultra-bright, and ultra-effective."
- SI.com's Grant Wahl did a QnA with former Rapids forward Shaun Bartlett. Did you know that when Barlett was sold by MLS to Zurich in 1997, it was at the time the biggest transfer fee received by the young league. Click here to read more.
- Here's another story on another former Rapids player, goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann.
- And finally, Jamie Smith saw his first minutes last week after coming back from injury. Click here for his latest blog post to SportTV.