In a game that mostly came down to penalty kicks, Sporting Kansas City proved more efficient from the spot.
Playing their 2019 MLS home opener, in between a pair of Concacaf Champions League matches, SKC rode an Ilie Sanchez PK goal and a Tim Melia PK save to a 2-0 victory over the 10-man Philadelphia Union on Sunday.
The opening goal came in the 11th minute when Auston Trusty was whistled for pushing Krisztian Nemeth in the back — after Ray Gaddis thwarted an SKC break — and Sanchez converted the ensuing penalty kick for the second time in five days.
Melia made a couple of more nice saves to preserve the shutout and Fabian’s day got worse when he was sent off with a 60th-minute red card for stomping Johnny Russell — also after a video review.
THE BIG PICTURE: After consecutive 2-1 losses — in their MLS opener and in the first leg of the CCL quarterfinals — SKC got a much-needed boost at home during a busy and important stretch. For the Union, there’s no shame in losing in Kansas City, but a missed penalty kick, an own goal and a red card is a rough way for it to happen, especially going into an even more daunting matchup next week in Atlanta.
MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Melia continued to show his PK mastery with his stop of Fabian, preventing the Union from going into halftime with the game tied.
MAN OF THE MATCH: In addition to his PK save, Melia also saved a rocket and a header from Cory Burke in the second half en route to his 40th career shutout.
- SKC: Thursday, March 14 vs. Independiente, CCL quarterfinals, Leg 2 (8 pm ET | UDN, YahooSports.com)
- PHI: Sunday, March 17 at Atlanta United (7:15 pm ET | MLS LIVE on ESPN+)