MLS: SKC hope recent home trend continues vs. FC Dallas

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Sporting Kansas City has struggled this season, but their recent home success could be a good sign ahead of their match Sunday against visiting FC Dallas.

After a seven-match losing streak, Kansas City (4-13-5, 17 points) has two wins in its past three home matches. However, FC Dallas (6-10-5, 23 points) are in the hunt for a playoff spot and riding a recent string of success.

Since firing coach Nico Estevez on June 9, FC Dallas has won three of their past five matches and are six points out of the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

On Thursday, Dallas beat the Portland Timbers 3-2 thanks to an own goal just before second-half stoppage time.

“The second half we showed character,” FC Dallas interim head coach Peter Luccin said. “We are in a very hard situation right now in the club and with the team, with so many injuries to very important players.”

Offensively, the absence of Jesus Ferreira looms large. With FC Dallas’ leading scorer over the past two seasons out likely through July due to a hamstring injury after getting hurt on June 22, Dallas is finding creative ways to win. Now, it tries to do it again, this time against SKC.

Kansas City’s defense has been a problem. Sporting has allowed the second-most goals in the Western Conference (46 goals in 22 matches), and failed to hold on to a second-half lead in their 2-1 loss to the host Colorado Rapids.

After scoring in the 48th minute, SKC surrendered two goals after the 69th minute. Making matters worse was how easily the Rapids scored the tying goal off a set piece. Colorado’s Oliver Larraz tied tallied with an unmarked header in the 69th minute, a mistake indicative of Sporting Kansas City’s defensive woes.

“We work on set pieces. Everyone knows their job in set pieces. Everyone knows who their man is in set pieces,” Kansas City captain Johnny Russell said. “So, there’s no excuse for allowing free headers. Simple as that. We have to hold each other accountable for that.”

This is the first meeting between the teams this season. They meet again in a U.S. Open Cup match on Wednesday, and back in league play to close the regular season Oct. 19.

–Field Level Media

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