Mark-Anthony Kaye was left frusrtated as his Colorado Rapids debut ended in a 0-0 draw with Sporting Kansas City on Saturday.
Kaye joined the club at the end of July from LAFC, with Colorado parting with $1m in General Allocation Money (GAM), a 2022 international roster spot and potential peformance-based add-ons for his services.
The Rapids put in a solid performance against the Western Conference leaders, with SKC unable to register a single shot on target while the hosts generated 2.9 expected goals (xG) and missed a number of high-quality chances.
On an individual level, Kaye can be happy with his night’s work, creating a match-high four chances and completing 88% of his passes, while no player on the pitch won more aerial duels (three).
But although Kaye was pleased to get 90 minutes on the pitch and by the team’s overall performance, he was left a little frustrated that the Rapids couldn’t convert their supremacy into three points.
“Obviously on a positive note, it’s good to get my debut with the club [and] play 90 minutes,” he told reporters. “I think, for the most part, we controlled the game and what we wanted to do. We created a lot of opportunities to score. It’s unfortunate the ball didn’t go in the back of the net tonight but there are some positives to take from this in that we pushed the tempo of the game and put it on our terms.
“We obviously look forward to the next game but I’m very happy with how the team played tonight. Unfortunate not to win.”
Slotting into an already strong midfield alongside Cole Bassett, Jack Price and Collen Warner, Kaye didn’t look out of place in Robin Fraser’s side and exerted plenty of attacking influence on the game.
Reflecting on the match, the Canada international believes the Rapids found more ‘fluidity’ as the game went on and that there’s plenty to look forward to between now and the end of the season.
“I think I worked my way into the game,” said Kaye. “Obviously, learning a new system takes time so I was just trying to go with the flow of it and kind of go off of the other midfielders. I think once I started to move inside, I found some good pockets to get turned and play some balls forward.
“We have quality players and when everyone is in the right position it makes it easy for the guy on the ball. I think as the game progressed you start to see the fluidity much better even when we rotated into different positions. It’s good stuff and, like I said, I look forward to continuing to build on the rest of the season with the team.”