KANSAS CITY, Kan. – His team put the ball off the woodwork twice, had another shot cleared out of the goalmouth by an opposing midfielder and conceded the winner on a rebound of a long shot off the crossbar.
Sporting Kansas City manager Peter Vermes wasn't about to blame bad luck for Wednesday night's 2-1 loss to Colorado, though – not after his team's turnovers set up both of the Rapids' goals.
“When you give up balls like that, you are going to get crushed,” Vermes said in his postmatch news conference. “But you deserve to. When you give up those kinds of balls, and we talk about it all the time, that’s what is going to happen to you.”
A giveaway from Lawrence Olum led to the Rapids going up 1-0 in the 41st minute, Luis Solignac capitalizing with a near-post strike. Sporting pulled one back in the 77th on the fourth goal of the season from Dom Dwyer, who came on as a second-half sub with Sporting playing on just three days rest – but in the 82nd minute, another turnover kept Kansas City from salvaging even a point at home.
“I thought we played reasonably well in the second half and got back in the game,” Feilhaber – a halftime sub himself – told reporters after Sporting took their second straight home defeat. “Once you tie it, I think you feel pretty good about scoring another. I lose a bad ball in midfield, not even midfield, more defensive third and from then on it hits off the crossbar and they get the rebound. So this one is on me.”
Feilhaber might have been the one to give up the ball on the decisive play, but Vermes wasn't happy with his team's performance as a whole – especially in a lackluster first half where Sporting managed plenty of possession but couldn't seem to do anything meaningful with it in the attacking third.
“It wasn’t good,” he said. “It wasn’t good enough. The game was too slow. The game was way too slow. Our way of pushing the game and driving the game was terrible. I thought the second half was much different. We were going after the game and putting them under pressure. There were times they couldn’t get out of their own half. That’s the way the game should have started, and that’s one of the biggest reasons I made the changes I did at halftime and throughout the rest of the game.”
Steve Brisendine covers Sporting Kansas City for MLSsoccer.com.