The Colorado Rapids and D.C. United have made it through 45 minutes of cold and still have 45 minutes to go, but it is the home side that is feeling warm and fuzzy at halftime thanks to Caleb Folan's first MLS goal. The Irishman tallied six minutes before the break to give the defending MLS Cup champions a 1-0 edge in their quest to start the season with nine points from three matches. Now the Rapids will be charged with seeing out the rest of the match, something that shouldn't be much of a problem if the first 45 minutes were any indicator.
It was 30 degrees at kick off at Dicks Sporting Goods Park in Commerce, CO and the rounds crew spent the afternoon clearing snow from the field, but aside from the long sleeves, speckles of snow and empty seats, there isn't much of an indicator of the cold and snow. The field has help up remarkably well and both teams have had the opportunity to play well, although the opportunity to play well doesn't mean they are playing well.
Colorado had the better of the play for most of the half and their 59% possession indicates their superiority. It took until the 39th minute to make it count though when Jeff Larentowicz spotted Folan making a run past the D.C. defense. Larentowicz floated the ball into Folan's path and the big striker gather the ball in the box with one recovering defender near him. There wasn't much defending to be seen though as Folan made a couple step overs before putting the ball on his left foot and striking it past a diving Pat Onstad to put Colorado ahead 1-0.
Meanwhile, D.C. now has to chase the match without any strikers to speak of as Chris Pontius is out of position up top, rookie Blake Brettschneider is making his first career start and Charlie Davies isn't an option off the bench as he's back in D.C. with a groin injury. United was struggling in the first half to maintain possession and create chances, something that will only get harder against a Colorado team sure to maintain their shape with a destroying pair of Larentowicz and Pablo Mastroeni in the center of the midfield.