Sporting Kansas City "didn't get it done," now facing tough situation to clinch playoff spot

KANSAS CITY, Kan. – The night began with hope and euphoria, with the 2015 US Open Cup crowd-surfing its way around a raucous Sporting Park and the postseason only three points away.
It ended in disappointment and uncertainty, as fans headed for the exits early. Securing a spot in the Audi 2015 MLS Cup Playoffs is still three points away – with the defending champions looming on #DecisionDay.
“We knew what we had to do, and we didn't get it done,” center back Kevin Ellis told reporters after Wednesday night's 2-0 loss to the shorthanded Colorado Rapids – the Western Conference's cellar dwellers – kept Sporting from clinching a fifth straight playoff spot. “That's disappointing to us. Every guy in here is going to take responsibility for that, myself included.

“We didn't do what we needed to do – whether we were lacking urgency or didn't play the ball well, didn't keep the ball, didn't defend well, didn't finish our chances. It's everything, and every guy is going to take responsibility for that.”
Wednesday's match was the first at home for Sporting since their shootout triumph over Philadelphia in the Open Cup final on Sept. 30, but the energy of the pregame celebration didn't carry over into the opening minutes.
“I don't think we had our best game today,” midfielder Benny Feilhaber said. “We didn't deserve the points. That's kind of the bottom line. I thought we had some good chances in both halves, but obviously as time starts to dwindle you have to start pushing more people up front if you want to try and get the win.”

Sporting paid for that failure to take early control, when Colorado struck on a pair of late counterattacks and came away with the upset behind goals from Dillon Powers in the 77th minute and Marcelo Sarvas in the 86th.

“I know that you’re not always going to win every game, but I also know that you have to come out with a certain approach and intent,” manager Peter Vermes said in his post-match news conference. “And we didn’t do that in the game. I hope and know that the players feel the same way. We weren’t right in that environment, and it’s hard to understand why because to me these are the easy games to play.
“You know when something’s on the line that it’s time to go, and we didn’t have that tonight.”
If Sporting don't have it Sunday against the LA Galaxy (7 pm ET on ESPN and ESPN Deportes), they'll need help getting into the Western Conference playoffs.
They're still above the red line, in sixth place – but just one point ahead of the San Jose Earthquakes.
Sporting could still qualify with a loss on Sunday, if the Quakes lose to West leaders FC Dallas (7 pm ET, MLS LIVE). With a draw, they would squeak in if San Jose loses or draws, or if Seattle loses or draws against already-eliminated Real Salt Lake.

They'd rather make it moot by beating the Galaxy, who are coming off a 5-2 home loss to Portland in their last league outing and fielded a reserve-heavy lineup on Wednesday in CONCACAF Champions League pool play at Guatemalan side Comunicaciones.
“I expect us to play well,” center back and captain Matt Besler told reporters. “I think everybody is disappointed with how that went. We have enough guys that have been around long enough where we have to come out on Sunday with more energy and more urgency.
“We can talk about it all we want, but at this time of the year it's all wasted energy. There's one game left, so it's do or die right now.”