Yesterday was the 7th game between Sporting Kansas City and Toronto FC at BMO Field and yesterday's game was extremely similar to the previous 6 match ups. Games that were for the most part dull and lacking good finishing chances. For only the 4th time in the 7 games one of the two teams scored. Not once have both teams scored in the same game, and there have been only 5 goals in the 7 games. Yesterday at BMO Field matched up perfectly with the other ones.
Things almost became a disaster early for Kansas City in the 12th minute. Toronto played a long ball over the top towards Eric Hassli who was going up against Aurelien Collin. As Hassli looked to be getting away Collin pulled Hassli down. Collin was immediatley given a yellow card for the challenge, but the protests from the Toronto players was that Collin had denied a goal scoring opportunity and should have been sent off. While I could have seen that happening for the challenge, I think Hassli's distance from goal on the play is what kept Collin on the field. On the ensuing free kick Torsten Frings put his shot just over Jimmy Nielsen's goal. Kansas City started to get the better of the play, but really struggled to create chances, most of the ones they did create were from outside the box. Both Paulo Nagamura and Seth Sinovic tried their luck from outside the box in the first 20 minutes but missed either wide or Milos Kocic made the save. KC continued to control much of the game, but they still struggled to get chances inside the area. In the 30th minute Kei Kamara had another opportunity outside the box, but Kocic got down and made the save. KC's best chance of the first half came in the 33rd minute. Graham Zusi played a nice ball over the top to Teal Bunbury who had gotten in behind the Toronto defense. Bunbury though tried to slot the ball past Kocic but didn't put enough pace on it and Kocic made an easy save. Bunbury went with the quick options, he could have let the ball roll across his body and fire it with his left, he could have tried to chip it, or even tried to round Kocic, but went with the quick shot option and didn't get enough on it to put KC on top. In the 42nd minute Toronto almost grabbed the lead off a corner. After a few corners in a row, Frings played a corner towards the near post and almost scored an Olympic goal as his corner hit the outside of the near post and bounced into as Nielsen tried to get over to make sure he could punch it away. As Nielsen recovered the ball was headed back on goal but hit the top of the cross bar and went out of play.
In the second half, KC continued to control without much substances while Toronto continued to have a few chances. In the 54th Hassli should have done better with a header that he put wide of the goal. The second half shortly after became the game that was expected as neither side did much going forward and the game got clogged in the midfield. Toronto had a chance in the 71st when Ryan Johnson headed over, but other than that for the most part the majority of the second half was beyond forgettable. Finally in the 83rd minute the game came alive a little bit. After a foul just outside the Toronto penalty area, Zusi stepped over the ball with Kamara next to him. Zusi touched the ball to Kamara who ripped a shot that took a small deflection on it's way past the wall. Kocic also made a mess of the shot as he stepped too far to his right and let the ball go just past him and into the net. After the lead, Toronto tried to push numbers forward looking for an equalizer, but offered very little. In the 90th minute confusion reigned. Quincy Amarikwa was called for a foul. Disagreeing with the call, Amarikwa voiced his opinions to the referee. Referee Jorge Gonzalez went to the back pocket and pulled out the red card. Shortly after though Gonzalez realized he pulled the wrong call and changed it to a yellow card. Toronto though offered little going forward in stoppage time and KC picked up their 7th win of the season.
Wizards Man of the Match - Paulo Nagamura - No one played amazing yesterday, the game as a whole was very drab. Nagamura though did an extremely good job of shutting down Toronto in the midfield and forcing them to basically bypass the midfield entirely.
Player Ratings - Nielsen 6, Myers 5, Collin 5, Besler 5, Sinovic 6, Cesar 5, Nagamura 6, Espinoza 6, Kamara 6, Bunbury 4, Zusi 5. Subs Sapong NR, Olum NR.