Sunday, April 28, 2013

KC fall to Portland

For the first time this season, Sporting KC lost at home, twice losing the lead as they felt to the Portland Timbers 3-2 at Sporting Park last night.

Things couldn't have started better for Sporting though as under a minute in they were in front.  A long throw from Matt Besler was headed in by Chance Myers for his first career MLS goal.  A fantastic start for KC. The Timbers though immediately started taking the game to KC after the goal.  Diego Valeri hit the cross bar in the 4th minute after he was played in behind KC's defense, and on the rebound, Aurelien Collin beat Will Johnson to the ball to knock it away before the Timbers captain could head the ball in. The Timbers kept the pressure up and Ryan Johnson forced a nice save out of Jimmy Nielsen in the 9th. Then in the 24th Rodney Wallace forced a nice save from Nelsen on a shot from distance. On the ensuing corner, the Timbers deservedly equalized.  Ryan Johnson beat Besler to the corner and jumped over Claudio Bieler to make it 1-1.  KC responded fairly quickly in the 29th.  Graham Zusi played a short free kick to Benny Feilhaber who turned and chipped a ball into the middle of the box for Collin.  The Frenchman touched the ball back towards the near post where Myers tapped it in for his second goal of the night. The Timbers responded almost immediately themselves in the 33rd.  Valeri sprung Johnson down the wing.  The Jamaican out raced KC's defense and squared the ball across for Darlington Nagbe who had a simple tap in to tie the game at 2-2. 

In the second half the Timbers continued to bring the game to Kansas City.  In the 57th after KC gave the ball away on their left side, the ball came to Diego Chara who played a ball across the field for a racing Wallace.  Wallace beat Nielsen to give the Timbers the lead. KC turned up the pressure searching for the equalizer, but they struggled to create clear chances for much of the second half as Portland shut down KC's attack.  Finally in stoppage time KC really tested the Timbers. A deep cross from Seth Sinovic found Collin in the middle box.  Collin put his header on goal but Donovan Ricketts made a superb save knocking the ball out for a corner.  KC kept coming and Mechack Jerome forced an awkward save from Ricketts as the ball knuckled. Ricketts though got in front of the effort and then collected the rebound.  In the end, KC didn't offer enough late on and Portland was able to take the 3-2 win.

Wizards Man of the Match - Chance Myers - The defender finally got his first goals in MLS play.  Even with those two goals I almost didn't pick him for man of the match because of his play on Portland's third goal as he let Wallace get behind him.

Player Ratings - Nielsen 4, Myers 6, Collin 4, Besler 4, Sinovic 5, Rosell 4, Nagamura 3, Feilhaber 4, Sapong 3, Bieler 3, Zusi 3. Subs Peterson 5, Jerome NR.


Nathan Martin said...

The Rocastle conundrum lives strong with Nagamura.

I understand that PV wants a designated pressure-man high enough up the field to quickly close down the opposing team in their own half. Fine. The problem is that Nagamura is way too high up the field when SKC have the ball which forces him to make plays in and around the box and leaves Rosell responsible for the entire width of the field on a breakaway. It was a glaring tactical error. Nagamura should never be closer than 30 yards from the endline during the run of play that way he and Rosell can get to loose balls outside the box and keep the pressure in the opponents' half. As it was the 1-man containment allowed them a release valve on the fast break time and time again.

Along those lines, Nagamura is my first sub every game that the team needs a goal. Otherwise, you're continuing to cede the middle of the field as a mode of attack.

Finally, Collin is taking way too many chances from the centerback position. The "woos" from the women may feed his ego but they don't win championships and neither do mistake-prone, narcissistic defenders.

Anonymous said...

Myers was awful. His two goals were erased by his worst defensive showing in years.