UPDATE: The Kansas City Star published an update on Opara's status early Wednesday morning.
Sporting Kansas City defender Ike Opara was taken to a nearby hospital for evaluation after sustaining a kick to the head in a frightening moment during Tuesday’s dramatic US Open Cup quarterfinal vs. FC Dallas.
Sporting’s star center back sustained the injury while defending FCD striker Maxi Urruti, who attempted a bicycle kick that led to the contact in the 101st minute of the extra-time thriller, which ended 3-0 in SKC’s favor. Urruti received his second yellow card of the evening for unsporting behavior and was sent off by referee Younes Marrakchi.
Opara crumpled to the turf motionless as his teammates waved urgently for medical treatment. He was eventually wheeled off on a stretcher, flashing a thumbs-up on his way off, to the relief of everyone in the stadium.
"He's good. He's alert. He's OK," SKC coach Peter Vermes told MLSsoccer.com postgame. "It was a scary situation, though. He was out."
Urruti appeared to feel genuinely awful and concerned while Opara was on the ground. Nothing malicious in the high kick. https://t.co/CtTBlU6v1K— Andy Edwards (@AndyEdMLS) July 12, 2017
A Sporting KC spokesperson confirmed to MLSsoccer.com that Opara has been taken to the nearby University of Kansas Medical Center to be evaluated for a concussion.
Opara is sitting up and talking in the hospital. They will keep him overnight.— Sam McDowell (@SamMcDowell11) July 12, 2017
*Additional reporting by Steve Brisendine.