COMMERCE CITY, Colo. — In the Rapids’ last three games, defender Marvell Wynne has done something he hasn’t done in his three-and-a-half years in Colorado.
The speedy veteran has found himself on the bench in each of the past three matches, the first prolonged benching of his Rapids career. The 27-year-old right back, who has also played in the middle, struggled during the team’s defensively brutal June, when they allowed 13 goals in just five matches.
The low point for Wynne came on the opening goal of Colorado’s 3-0 loss to Portland on June 23, when the right back wasn’t alert to Timbers attacker Rodney Wallace on a quick free kick, and Wallace took advantage of Wynne’s absence to deliver home a perfect cross for a goal.
Since that game, Wynne has accumulated only nine minutes of action in three games, a position the 97-game starter and former No. 1 overall pick in the SuperDraft isn’t exactly used to.
“In terms of trying to start and all that, that’s of course a goal of mine when it comes to training and all that, I’ve always done my best,” Wynne told MLSsoccer.com this week, “and if Oscar [Pareja] doesn’t feel like I’m the man for the job to start, then so be it. Otherwise, I put my head down and go to work.”
After switching to right back from center during the offseason, Wynne has shuttled between center and right back due to an accumulation of injuries along the Rapids backline, and he’d prefer to settle into a more consistent role.
“I realize some of the decisions I’ve made, as a center back going up for balls that I shouldn’t have, at right back, sometimes I feel like I get kind of confused,” Wynne said. “But other than that, it hasn’t been that too difficult. It would be nice to maintain one position for a little bit just so I can get accustomed to it a little more. But if it gets me on the field playing center back or right back, I’m up for whatever.”
Wynne did indicate a certain degree of frustration, however. When asked whether or not he accepted Pareja’s decision to bench him, the always-candid 27-year-old was direct.
“No. Not a lot of explanation,” Wynne said. “But I feel like if I’m good enough, I’m going to play. Obviously, I’m doing something wrong. But again, keep doing my thing, keep working as hard as I can, and hopefully I’ll be back out there.”
The Rapids are off this weekend but return to action July 17 at home against New England.
Chris Bianchi covers the Colorado Rapids for MLSsoccer.com.