OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — Sporting Kansas City took out some frustration against the New England Revolution in a US Open Cup play-in match on Wednesday night, running away with a 5-0 win to join seven other MLS sides in the tournament proper.
Sporting may be rooted to the bottom of the Eastern Conference table in MLS play, but that didn’t keep them from making a big statement against the Revs thanks to braces from braces from Chance Myers and C.J. Sapong and a goal from Aurélien Collin to claim the victory, their first in all competitions since March 19.
With the victory, Kansas City join 15 other teams in the round of 16 of the US Open Cup and are now 2-4 in qualifying. It is the 11th time in team history that it has advanced to this stage of the competition.
Rain fell steadily for all 90 minutes in front of 1,228 fans at the Blue Valley District Athletic Center as the two sides fought for the right to advance out of Open Cup qualifying. Initially, the play reflected the conditions and mixture of reserves and starters in each team’s lineup, but Kansas City settled down first and took full advantage of the Revolution’s left flank.
Peter Vermes’ side, playing its first game at home in 2011 after playing nine consecutive games on the road, clearly fed off the home support and wasted little time putting the game out of reach.
Omar Bravo, starting his second consecutive game since returning from sports hernia surgery, got things started in the ninth minute when he ghosted in behind New England’s back line and delivered a hard, low cross to the back post. Myers, who currently leads the reserve league with three goals, was there to get the rebound, sliding in to finish past a helpless Bobby Shuttleworth for his first of the match.
Just 10 minutes later, Kansas City made it 2-0. With Myers and Sapong leading the charge, Sporting took advantage of holes in the Revs defense with another attack down the left sideline. This time, Sapong fed Bravo, who hesitated before taking a quick touch toward the end line and unleashing a drive Shuttleworth was only able to parry. Once again, Myers was there, sliding the ball inside the near post.
Unlike in previous matches, Kansas City managed to close the door on New England almost immediately, scoring the third in the 24th minute. Bravo and Seth Sinovic combined on the left flank, leaving the former Revolution defender in open space. Sinovic picked out Sapong at the top of the six-yard box, where the rookie forward slid in to score his second Open Cup goal of the season.
Following the tally, the game settled down until halftime, as both teams battled the conditions and some rough play before Sporting really laid it on in the second half.
The home side flashed chance after chance past New England’s goal before Collin finally got the fourth, rising to meet Ryan Smith’s corner kick in the 81st minute. With two minutes left on the clock, Sapong got his second and the final goal of the match, muscling in behind the defense before driving a shot into the roof of the net.
SKC – Chance Myers 1 (Omar Bravo 1) 9
SKC – Chance Myers 2 (unassisted) 19
SKC – C.J. Sapong 2 (Seth Sinovic 1) 24
SKC – Aurelien Collin 1 (Ryan Smith 1) 81
SKC – C.J. Sapong 2 (unassisted) 88
NE – Didier Domi (caution; Tactical Foul) 20
NE – Pat Phelan (caution; Reckless Foul) 45
NE – Alan Koger (caution; Reckless Foul) 74
New England Revolution – Bobby Shuttleworth (Tim Murray 72), Ryan Kinne, Franco Coria, Otto Loewy, Didier Domi, Michael Augustine (Diego Fagundez 70), Pat Phelan, Andrew Sousa, Sainey Nyassi (Zak Boggs 60), Zack Shilawski, Alan Koger
Substitutes Not Used: Darrius Barnes
Sporting Kansas City – Eric Kronberg, Michael Harrington, Matt Besler, Aurelien Collin, Seth Sinovic, Omar Bravo (Ryan Smith 57), Craig Rocastle (Birahim Diop 72), Chance Myers (Kei Kamara 79), Luke Sassano, Graham Zusi, C.J. Sapong
Substitutes Not Used: Jimmy Nielsen, Roger Espinoza
Referee: Sorin Stoica
Referee's Assistants: Lance Mesman, Matthew Foerster
4th Official: Landis Wiley
Weather: Cloudy and 53 degrees