MLS: Sporting KC hope to build momentum vs. Minnesota United
With a much-needed victory finally in their possession, Sporting Kansas City will dare to dream about a winning streak.
Sporting Kansas City (1-7-3, 6 points) will host Minnesota United (3-4-3, 12 points) on Saturday night after earning its first victory of the MLS regular season on Sunday at Seattle. The 2-1 victory by Sporting KC was also the first-place Sounders’ first home loss of the season.
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Sporting KC scored two goals for the first time this season, with both coming in the first half, and then held on to win amid the Sounders’ late push for a tying goal.
“I do believe that we’re building toward who we can be, and I think (Sunday) was a very good representation of that,” SKC coach Peter Vermes said. “Is that it? No, not even close. There’s so much more that we can do better, and we’ll keep working toward that.”
Indeed there is after Sporting KC fell 1-0 to the Houston Dynamo in U.S. Open Cup play Wednesday.
Sporting KC is getting much of its injury-depleted roster healthy again. For the first time in more than 600 days, all three of Sporting Kansas City’s designated players started a match together, and all three contributed in the victory. Erik Thommy and Alan Pulido scored the two goals, and Gadi Kinda assisted Thommy’s goal.
Sporting is still in last place in the Western Conference standings, but they are just six points behind a tie among three teams that sit at the playoff line.
One of those three spots is held by Minnesota United, who have played better on the road where they have all three of their victories this season.
Adrian Heath’s club also will try to draw energy from a recent win, although this one was in the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup against the Philadelphia Union. Minnesota led late before Philadelphia tied it in the third minute of second-half stoppage time to force overtime. Both teams scored in overtime before the Loons won it on penalties.
“It felt like we had to win three games,” Heath said afterward. “We showed a lot of character with the penalties, because it’s easy to feel deflated when you concede (a goal) on the last kick of the game.”
–Field Level Media
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