Sporting KC cruised to victory on Sunday afternoon at Sporting Park against Chivas USA thanks in part to a red card to Chivas goalkeeper Dan Kennedy in the second half. In the first half, Kansas City controlled possession and created quite a few chances that they couldn't finish. In the 18th, Graham Zusi received a cross field ball in the corner, settled it and fired a drive into the middle of the box that just missed a sliding Jacob Peterson that would have made it 1-0. Claudio Bieler almost curled in an effort in the 21st, but his shot that looked likely to curl into the corner was headed away by a Chivas defender. Finally in the 41st, Kansas City grabbed the lead. Off a Chivas turn over in KC's end, Sporting tried to start a counter. Chivas briefly won the ball back before turning it back over to Zusi in their defensive half. Zusi fed the ball to Bieler who took a touch into the box, then got Kennedy to commit, cutting inside and sliding a shot into the net to make it 1-0 just before half time.
The game took it's big turn in the 54th minute. Zusi played a great ball splitting the Chivas defense for Paulo Nagamura who'd been on the shoulder of the last defender. Nagamura dribbled towards Kennedy and tried to round the keeper right as he entered the box. Kennedy caught Nagamura just a little bit, but it was enough contract for Nagamura to go down and Baldomero Toledo to point to the spot. He also produced a red card for Kennedy, forcing Chivas to use their final sub to bring on back up goalkeeper, Patrick McLain. McLain's first job was to pick the ball out of the net after Bieler sent him the wrong way, doubling KC's lead. KC had thought they'd made it 3-0 in the 62nd minute off a quick free kick. The ball was played quickly to Zusi who was standing just behind the wall. Zusi turned and fired a shot that was knocked into the path of Bieler who put the ball in the net. Unfortunately though Zusi was offside on the first pass so the play was called back. There was no offisde call a few minutes later when Josh Gardner played a cross into the box that Zusi slid to meet, hitting it in off the post to make it 3-0. Kansas City continued to control the play as Chivas seemed comfortable to sit back and just try to cut back on the number of goals they gave up. But in the 87th minute, KC finished Chivas off as Mechack Jerome fired a cross into the box that substitute CJ Sapong turned into the net to make it 4-0. The 4 goal win is Kansas City's first in league play since the 2010 season opener against DC United. And similar to that one, KC just controlled the game, with Jimmy Nielsen having very little to do as he passed Tony Meola for the most shutouts in league play in KC's history.
Wizards Man of the Match - Claudio Bieler - A brace for KC's designated player, his first goals since the 89th minute winner against DC United. Like most of KC's attackers he easily could have had more as well.
Honorable Mention - Graham Zusi
Player Ratings - Nielsen 6, Jerome 7, Collin 6, Opara 6, Sinovic 6, Rosell 6, Nagamura 6, Joseph 6, Peterson 7, Bieler 8, Zusi 8. Subs Gardner 7, Sapong 7, Fielhaber 6.