Michael Laudrup replaced Brendan Rodgers this summer and the new Swansea coach ran out two different squads in a preseason friendly with the Rapids.Swansea City is the sixth English Premier League team to set off on a tour in the United States this summer, kicking off a 12-day trip with a match in the Mile High City against the Colorado Rapids on Tuesday. The MLS outfit won 2-1 thanks to two quick goals.
Both teams wore black armbands and Swans captain Garry Monk placed a wreath at the halfway line as the stadium stood in a moment of silence paying tribute to the lives that were taken at the Aurora theater shooting.
New manager and former Barcelona player Michael Laudrup thought his side improved as the game wore on.
"I think it was two different halves," Laudrup said. "I think the first half we had some problems. I think we played a little too slow. They score two goals. The second one was a fantastic goal. I think we struggled in the first half."
As the game began, Swansea City struggled to defend its goal, as the Rapids took the lead in the fourth minute through Andre Akpan. This lead was doubled in the 15th minute as Rapids Kamani Hill scored a rocket of a goal.
As halftime, the Swans subbed out all 10 of their field players. From that change came a beautiful set piece by new addition Jonathan De Guzman in the 79th minute.
"In the second half we evolved in our passing and as a team, and we still have a lot to learn as a group," De Guzman said. "A lot of new players too, so ultimately we can be ready for the first game. It was difficult, the first game as a group of this season, and it’s tough for new players to adapt. I think overall it was a good result."
Even though Swansea City ended up with a 2-1 loss, coach Laudrup is content with the outcome.
"I think it was a very important game for me to see all of the players, except one of the youngsters. The 20 other players, the goalkeeper, I saw them today, and that was very important for me. I think that is why we are here," he said. "I wanted to come here open minded to see. Some of the players I’ve seen a lot as they played last year but some others much less because they didn’t play so much. I just wanted to see them with my own eyes in games. That’s what we do here, why everybody played 45 minutes, and what we will do same in the next game on Saturday."
Swansea City will travel to California to take on Ventura County Fusion Saturday night.
Tim Gardner contributed reporting to this article
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