April 21, 2013 - Major League Soccer (MLS) - Sporting Kansas City
Sporting Kansas City fell 2-0 to the LA Galaxy on Saturday at the Home Depot Center. Marcelo Sarvas opened the scoring in the 27th minute and Landon Donovan followed suit in the 74th minute, scoring his first goal of the 2013 MLS regular season.
The defeat ended Sporting Kansas City's shutout streak at 545 minutes, the fifth-longest in MLS history, and snapped a five-game unbeaten run. Sporting KC remains in first place in the Eastern Conference and returns home for a three-game homestand after playing two games in four days on opposite coasts.
The first half was extremely energetic with an abundance of chances for both sides.Sporting KC opened the match strong, with their first chance coming in the 9th minute when Claudio Bieler played the ball through to C.J. Sapong. The third-year forward cut to the middle and shot from 18 yards out but his shot was denied by Galaxy goalkeeper Carlo Cudicini.
Two minutes later, the Galaxy's leading goal-scorer Mike Magee sent in a half-volley from the left edge of the box but goalkeeper Jimmy Nielsen punched the ball out to safety despite a deflection en route.
The home team again threatened in the 17th minute when Robbie Keane slipped a through ball to Homegrown Player Jack McBean but Aurelien Collin deflected his potentially dangerous shot.
In the 20th minute, Graham Zusi nearly gave Sporting Kansas City the lead only to see his free kick rattle the crossbar after lifting it over the wall and beating Cudicini.
The Galaxy came close again in the 25th minute when Donovancrossed to Keane. The Ireland international evaded his mark and sent a shot on target but Oriol Rosell stopped the ball in its tracks and calmly cleared it.
Two minutes later, the Galaxy took the lead, snapping Sporting KC's shutout streak that spanned seven games. Donovan drove the ball down the left flank on a counterattack and squared the ball to Sarvas, positioned perfectly to tap the ball past Nielsen from inside the six-yard box.
The game was still 1-0 in the 61st minute when a free kick from Juninho hit the roof of the net. Two minutes later, Sapong had an attempt at an equalizer when he sent in an acrobatic volley from the right side of the penalty area that went just wide of the goal.
The Galaxy doubled their lead in the 74th minute when Keane charged down the left flank on a counter, crossed to Donovan at the far post and watched his fellow Desginated Player slot the shot easily into the net from eight yards out.
Donovan nearly notched a second goal in the 78th minute when he sliced a blazing shot from inside the area that sailed narrowly over the crossbar. Ten minutes later, Keane went one-on-one with Nielsen but couldn't work his way past the 2012 MLS Goalkeeper of the Year as Nielsen stood his ground before taking the ball from the foot of Keane.
Sporting Kansas City will next host the Portland Timbers at 7:30 p.m. CT on Saturda, April 27 at Sporting Park. Tickets, including recently released standing-room only tickets, are available in limited supply through Ticketmaster and at Sporting Park Box Offices.