Colorado Rapids extend unbeaten run to 11 games, draw with Toronto FC

Colorado Rapids midfielder Braian Galvan (52) heads the ball away from Toronto FC defender Chris Mavinga (23) in the second half of an MLS soccer game in Denver, Saturday, Sept. 25, 2021. Toronto and Colorado tied, 0-0 (Joe Mahoney/AP).

COMMERCE CITY, Colo. -- Toronto FC and Colorado played to a 0-0 draw Saturday, extending the Rapids' unbeaten streak in Major League Soccer to 11 games (6-0-5).

It was a game light on offence with scoring chances few and far between. Colorado pressed in the dying minutes, however, with substitutes Diego Rubio and Dominique Badji bolstering the attack.

It was the fourth straight draw for Colorado (12-4-9), which is now unbeaten in 12 games at Dick's Sporting Goods Park (6-0-6) since a 3-1 loss to Austin FC in its April 24 home opener.

Toronto (4-15-7) pulled even with Austin FC on points with 19 but remained in the league basement on goal difference. Austin hosts the Los Angeles Galaxy on Sunday.

The clean sheet was just the second in league play for Toronto this season, following a 2-0 win over Columbus back on May 12.

Led by former TFC assistant Robin Fraser, the Rapids have lost just once -- July 24 at Real Salt Lake -- in their last 16 games (7-1-8).

The Rapids entered weekend play just two points out of first place in the MLS Western Conference.

Saturday's game marked Fraser's 50th at the Colorado helm since leaving TFC in August 2019. He is 25-12-13 with his team's 25 wins, 82 goals and 89 points all club records over 50 games in the post-shootout era.

Toronto, playing its fifth game in two weeks, was coming off a 4-0 midweek win over York United FC in Canadian Championship play. Last Saturday it downed Nashville SC to snap a six-game losing streak and nine-game winless run (0-7-2).

Both teams managed just one shot on target in an uneventful first half.

Colorado had more of the ball early with Kellyn Acosta pulling the strings in midfield. But it produced few early scoring chances with Michael Barrios' header off-target in the 12th minute. A deflection off TFC defender Kemar Lawrence went just wide of the Toronto goal in the 17th minute.

Lawrence got a timely boot to the ball in the 25th minute, preventing Mark-Anthony Kaye from finding Barrios in front of goal.

Colorado began to fire crosses into the Toronto penalty box in the second half with wingback Keegan Rosenberry delivering some good balls from the right flank. At the other end, Yeferson Soteldo was the lone bright spot in the TFC attack although he missed the target on several occasions.

Toronto appealed unsuccessfully for a penalty in the 85th minute, with Mark Delgado complaining he had been pulled back by Lucas Esteves.

Toronto defender Chris Mavinga limped off in the 33rd minute. Eriq Zavaleta went off in the 75th after getting caught in a tangle of bodies off a corner.

Toronto coach Javier Perez made four changes to the team that blanked York with Lawrence, Zavaleta, Noble Okello and Patrick Mullins coming into the starting 11.

Jonathan Osorio captained Toronto in the absence of Michael Bradley, who was suspended for yellow card accumulation.

Reigning league MVP Alejandro Pozuelo missed a fifth straight game with a lower-body injury. Also out injured were Ayo Akinola, Jozy Altidore, Tsubasa Endoh, Ralph Priso and Jordan Perruzza. Endoh underwent surgery on his right leg Friday. He is expected to be out for three months.

Short on bodies, Toronto dressed two goalkeepers -- Quentin Westberg and Kevin Silva -- on its bench.

TFC alumni Clint Irwin, Steven Beitashour and Collen Warner were on the Rapids bench. Kaye, a former member of the Toronto FC academy, started for Colorado.

The Rapids are now 6-1-2 all-time at home against Toronto and have held TFC scoreless in its last five visits.

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