2004 Club by Club
In 2004, MLS Goalkeeper of the Year Joe Cannon and the Colorado Rapids’ stingy defense rode an 8-1-7 home record to reach the playoffs for the third straight year. During the season midfielder Chris Henderson passed Marcelo Balboa and Paul Bravo for first on the all-time appearances and points lists. He also won the 2004 US Soccer Foundation’s MLS Humanitarian of the Year Award for his extensive work in the community. Peguero Jean Philipe led the team in scoring with seven goals and four assists despite missing 12 games during the season.
But there is no mistaking that it was Cannon’s year to shine; in addition to being named MLS Goalkeeper of the Year, he was also named to the 2004 MLS Best XI and was one of three finalists for the MLS MVP award, and won both the Rapids MVP and the Rapids Defensive Player of the Year awards.
The Rapids set a new MLS record for the lowest home Goals Against Average over an entire season with at 0.53 by only allowing eight goals in 15 matches at INVESCO Field during the season, and never more than one in a single game. After Kansas City broke the Rapids’ MLS record 16 game home undefeated streak on Jun. 9, the Black & Blue reeled off 11 more undefeated home games. On the year Colorado was undefeated when scoring more than one goal, a credit to the play of Cannon and the suffocating defense.
After hanging around the bottom half of the Western Conference for the first four months of the season, the Rapids rode a five game undefeated streak through parts of August and September to reach the top of the table. Unfortunately a 0-2-2 record over the final four games dropped the Rapids to third in the conference and a matchup with the LA Galaxy in the first round of the playoffs. Colorado hosted LA in the first leg of the playoff series and took a 1-0 victory off a Peguero goal and five saves by Cannon saw out the win. However in the return leg at the Home Depot Center the Galaxy struck twice in the first half and held on for a 2-1 aggregate victory to end the 2004 season for the Rapids.