For 45 minutes last night, Sporting KC looked like they'd be able to walk out of the Stub Hub Center with one or three points. For most of the second 45 it looked like they'd just be able to hang on to that one point, but in stoppage time, KC was crushed by a late goal by substitute Omar Gonzalez as Sporting KC fell 2-1 to the defending MLS Cup champion LA Galaxy.
KC's defense look out of sorts from the start last night struggling to deal with the Galaxy's attack early on. KC paid for it in the 9th minute. A cross field ball by Juninho found Stefan Ishizaki on KC's left side. Ishizaki brought the ball down and dribbled at Marcel de Jong 1v1. Ishizaki turned de Jong and fired a shot on goal. Luis Marin got down and made the save, but only pushed the rebound into the path of the unmarked Baggio Husidic, who knocked the ball into the empty net giving LA the lead. Teenager, Bradford Jamieson caused all sorts of problems for KC with his speed. Twice he was going 1v1 with KC's center backs, but both times Matt Besler and Kevin Ellis were eventually able to stand up the U20 international.
KC found a way back into the game in the 22nd minute, completely against the run of play. Dom Dwyer collected a long ball deep in the Galaxy's end. Dwyer dribbled inside to the top of the box before sliding a ball through to Benny Feilhaber. Feilhaber immediately touched the ball to Krisztian Nemeth who had made a run into the box, Nemeth took a touch and then chipped the ball over Jaime Penedo and into the net to tie the game at 1-1. After the goal Kansas City started to look a lot more dangerous offensive, getting more of the ball and putting more pressure on the Galaxy back line. Marcel de Jong created two of KC's better chances, first in the 35th with a long run and firing a shot from near the corner of the box. The ball took a deflection on the way through, but Penedo adjusted well and was able to get a hand to it and the rebound was cleared. Minutes later, de Jong had another opportunity in a similar situation, but his shot skimmed the outside of the post and went out.
After the way the first half ended with KC on the front foot, there was a level of confidence heading into the second half that KC could come out and possibly steal all three points in the game. Unfortunately things didn't work out that way in the second half. LA came out and started taking the game to Kansas City again, keeping KC's offense from really getting involved in the play. KC's best chance of the second half came in the 68th minute after some good work down the week the ball was played into the middle for Dwyer near the penalty spot. Dwyer's shot though was well over the bar. Much of the half though LA controlled, Juninho forced a save out of Marin on a shot from distance in the 72nd. KC's defense was bending but not breaking as the game came to a conclusion, even with an injury forcing Vermes to substitute de Jong for Amadou Dia. Late in stoppage time though LA found their deserved winner as a corner from Juninho was sent towards Gonzalez at the back post where he'd beaten Anibaba to the ball, getting a leg on it. His shot was headed towards goal, but deflected off Bernardo Anor as Marin dove; the deflection sent the ball the opposite direction and into the net as Marin dove the other way giving the Galaxy a late win.
Wizards Man of the Match - Krisztian Nemeth - A well taken finish by Nemeth after some good interchange, between Dwyer and Feilhaber. Overall though there really wasn't anyone that stood out as deserving the award that much over anyone else.
Player Ratings - Marin 4, de Jong 4, Besler 4, Ellis 4, Anibaba 4, Carrasco 4, Espinoza 3, Feilhaber 5, Zusi 4, Dwyer 3, Nemeth 5. Subs Dia 4, Anor 3, Peterson NR.