Los Angeles Soccer: Quincy Amarikwa

CHIVAS USA: Another breakdown, another loss

March, 26, 2011
CARSON -- Another mostly good defensive performance again went for naught for Chivas USA, which conceded few chances but created even fewer and paid for a mistake in a 1-0 defeat Saturday night to the visiting Colorado Rapids.

The reigning MLS Cup champs, with neither Omar Cummings (off with Jamaica's national team) nor Conor Casey (tightness in his calf) in the starting XI for the first time since October 2008 -- a span of 67 league games -- managed just two scoring opportunities, and Quincy Amarikwa made the first count, finishing a counterattack in the 32nd minute for the only goal.

Colorado (2-0-0), which is atop the Western Conference standings with archrival Real Salt Lake, has posted shutout victories in its last four games against the Goats and has won four of the last five meetings at Home Depot Center.

A quick look at Chivas' loss:

BEST PLAYER: Take your pick from these three Rapids: central midfielder Jeff Larentowicz, left back Anthony Wallace or center back Drew Moor.

Larentowicz was a force in the middle for Colorado, more so defensively, his energy key as Chivas (0-2-0) failed to penetrate despite decent stretches of possession. Wallace made several big plays and kept whichever winger he was matched up with -- Marcos Mondaini, so good in the Goats' season-opening loss to Sporting Club Kansas City, and Justin Braun -- from making impacts. Moor was nearly perfect in the middle, anchoring a superb defensive effort that had the Rapids in charge from the start.

Best for the Goats? We'll go with central midfielder Nick LaBrocca, who won balls and distributed nicely, playing major roles when Chivas kept possession in the first half and applied pressure in the second.

BEST GOAL: There was only one, and it wasn't a very good one, from Chivas' viewpoint. Blame another defensive breakdown: The Goats' backline was pushed forward, failed to corral Jamie Smith on the left flank, and his ball toward the box for Amarikwa to run onto found gaping space.

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