SKC Loses to RBNY in Disappointing Fashion

Kansas City can't capitalize on win after midweek buzz
by Skylar Rolstad   |   Monday, August 05, 2013

State of SKC - column on Sporting KC (SKC) & the Kansas City soccer scene.

Sporting Kansas City's game on Saturday provoked many thoughts, but for the most part just groans and sighs, as SKC lost 3-2 to Red Bull New York.

The game marked a homecoming for SKC, which returned home with an added buzz from the All-Star Game in the middle of the week.

In the ASG, Aurelien Collin played 90 minutes and evidently felt the effects of some physical and mental fatigue from the midweek game. Graham Zusi was not used Saturday as a precaution for his injured hamstring also suffered during the ASG.

Given these setbacks, Sporting were disappointing, and lost 3-2 to a New York team that, although surging, could have been beaten at home. 

Kansas City dominated the opening few minutes of the game like any home team should; KC had kept possession so well that it seemed only a matter of time before a breakthrough goal would be scored.

The best chance at scoring for SKC came in the 43rd minute when Claudio Bieler headed the ball inexplicably over the bar in front of an open goal.  But this was already after New York had scored its 1st goal, a speedy counter attack finished off by Jonny Steele.

The play started when Sporting's midfield lost a 50/50 ball; the early pressure, a staple of SKC manager Peter Vermes' tactical approach, was not applied and Dax McCarty could easily slide the ball downfield to Steele. By that time, Chance Myers could not make the sprint over to Steele and knock the ball away. 

In the 63rd minute, the difference for New York was made when Lloyd Sam came on the field. He immediately assisted a Fabian Espindola goal and scored a goal of his own.

Sam's goal started with a brilliant first touch that threw off Peterson Joseph and gave him all the time in the world to shoot it past SKC goalkeeper Jimmy Nielsen. Joseph was frustrating to watch at defensive midfield, but was SKC's only option while Paulo Nagamura is out with a sprained ankle. 

The game was 90 minutes, and Sporting KC only played about 65 of them. Zusi's absence was highlighted by Kei Kamara trying to do too much, Benny Feilhaber being ineffective at what Zusi is meant to do, and Sporting's midfield being inept at having players that stay back to cut off a counter attack. However, the team showed some character in the final minutes of the game when Dwyer scored his 1st MLS goal, one that gave KC a quick boost in confidence. 

Kansas City's next game in MLS Regular Season play is Saturday at Sporting Park. Another Eastern Conference team getting hot in the 2nd half of the season, the New England Revolution, will challenge Sporting KC. 

Next, though, Sporting will travel to Nicaragua to begin their CONCACAF Champions League campaign. The first game in the group stage is against Real Esteli, champions of the Nicaraguan Primera Division.

NEXT UP: August 7- CONCACAF Champions League, Real Esteli vs. Sporting Kansas City, Estadio Independencia, Esteli, Nicaragua. 10 p.m. EST FOX Soccer Plus.

Skylar ROLSTAD

Nationality:
USA
College:
Univ. of Kansas
Club Domestic:
Sporting KC
Club Foreign:
AC Milan
A student at the University of Kansas. He writes for the Sporting Kansas City club column for Soccer Newsday and is a regular at Sporting Park. His passion for soccer can best be described as unhealthy.
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