Minnesota United lost two crucial video reviews, the game and along with the opposition some of its composure as well Saturday afternoon at cold and windy TCF Bank Stadium.
The Loons' 2-0 loss came against a Colorado team that had been outscored 22-1 during a seven-game losing streak it ended after Yannick Boli's perfect header in the 61st minute put the Rapids ahead.
The Loons (11-18-3) appeared to score twice, momentarily executing the game's first goal in the 51st minute and later tying the score in the second minute of extra time. But the video assistant referee negated both goals after lengthy reviews that altered the game's flow, momentum and perhaps outcome.
Afterward, Loons coach Adrian Heath called his team's fifth home loss "arguably one of our worst performances of the season" a week after his team allowed four first-half goals and lost 5-1 at Philadelphia.
The match ended when Colorado's Niki Jackson scored in the seventh minute of extra time and a confrontation between players from both teams broke out along the sideline after Colorado's Tommy Smith punched the air with his fist in celebration in front of the United bench and its fans.
"As much as it's disappointing at the time when people do that, you have to be professional and bite your tongue and get on with it," Heath said.
Both Smith and Loons unused substitute Harrison Heath — Adrian's son — received a red card for a foul and abusive language, and Harrison Heath later took to Twitter to "clarify" his actions.
"I did not spit nor would I ever spit at someone as it is the lowest of the low," Heath tweeted. "However, I did defend my teammates and club from such a classless and disrespectful celebration in front of our home bench and crowd. By no means am I happy about getting sent off. But I will always put team and club first."
Those two video reviews determined that United forward Angelo Rodriguez was offside on both goals that were overruled. Loons star Darwin Quintero collected a pass with his right foot and in the next step launched a shot past goalkeeper Tim Howard of Colorado (7-19-6) in that 51st minute. Substitute Ibson scored left-footed from directly in front of the goal just after regulation time expired.
Boli's header stood over all.
"I've said it a million times: Goals change games," Adrian Heath said. "I said at halftime I thought the first goal was crucial today. They got the opportunity and they took it."
The first review took nearly four minutes, the second nearly three minutes for first-time referee Guido Gonzalez Jr. to rule Rodriguez offside.
"It's heartbreaking, especially goals like that, high emotional goals," said United goalkeeper Matt Lampson, who started his first MLS game since April for injured Bobby Shuttleworth. "That's brutal. Credit to us that we fought back each time, but it just wasn't enough. ... Actually, three of them took very, very long. It ruins the flow of the game for sure, especially when you have momentum on your side."
Rodriguez said afterward he hadn't yet seen replays of the two overturned goals.
"It's very difficult to tell [if you're offside] when you're on the field," Rodriguez said through a translator. "But the play ends and I don't understand how they call it offside so late. … We had them there. We were ready to tie the game. It changes everything, everything. But we're committing errors that hurts us and we have to correct that."