Go in-depth for Sporting Kansas City's 1-0 loss at the San Jose Earthquakes on Sunday night at Buck Shaw Stadium with this match's fast facts.
- Despite the loss, Sporting KC remains atop the Eastern Conference with 39 points and holds the tiebreaker advantage over New York (even on wins and goals scored, ahead on goal differential).
- Sporting KC remains second in the race for the Supporters' Shield, two points behind Real Salt Lake.
- Sporting KC is 223-214-115 all-time and 76-134-65 on the road all-time.
- Sporting KC is 11-8-6 on the season and 5-4-3 on the road in 2013. The road record remains the best in MLS this season despite Sunday's defeat.
- Sporting KC is the only team in the Eastern Conference with a positive goal differential away from home in 2013.
- Seven of Sporting Kansas City's eight losses in 2013 have come by one goal margins of defeat.
- Sporting KC has allowed one or fewer goals in 18 of the team's 25 games this season.
- Sporting KC is 20-21-7 against the San Jose Earthquakes and 4-14-6 on the road in the series.
- The loss snapped Sporting KC's four-game unbeaten streak against San Jose.
- Sunday marked the lone meeting between Sporting KC and the San Jose Earthquakes during the 2013 regular season.
- Sporting KC is 3-3-3 when allowing one goal and 0-4-2 when scoring 0 goals in 2013.
- Sporting KC is 4-5-4 when tied at the half and 2-6-1 when conceding the first goal in a match in 2013. Sporting KC has lost three straight matches when tied at halftime.
- Sporting KC is 35-41-13 during the month of August all-time.
- Sporting KC (36) is tied with the New York Red Bulls, the Philadelphia Union and the Montreal Impact for most goals scored in the Eastern Conference and second in the League behind Real Salt Lake (41).
- Sporting KC's +11 goal differential is best in the Eastern Conference and second best in the League behind only the Portland Timbers (12).
- Sporting Kansas City goalkeeper Jimmy Nielsen has started and played every minute in 81 consecutive MLS matches dating back to 2011, the fourth longest streak in MLS history.
- Claudio Bieler has appeared in every MLS match for the club this season, the only field player to do so.
- Sporting Kansas City is 2-4-2 against Western Conference opponents in 2013.
- Sporting KC leads MLS in shots taken (384) and shots against (215) in 2013. Sporting Kansas City has also conceded the fewest shots on goal (75) in Major League Soccer this season,
- Sporting KC and San Jose each had nine shots on Sunday, marking the first time this season that Sporting KC have taken the same amount of shots as their opponent.
- Sporting KC's nine shots were the third fewest in a match for the club this season.
- Sporting KC's nine fouls suffered on Sunday were the second fewest in a match for the club this season.
- Sporting KC is 0-6-0 when trailing at the 75-minute mark in 2013.
- Home teams are undefeated in the last 17 MLS matches and went 8-0-1 this weekend.
- With the loss, Sporting KC's winless streak at San Jose reaches 16 games dating back to the 2000 season.
- The San Jose Earthquakes are now unbeaten in 12 consecutive home matches, the longest home unbeaten streak in MLS this season, and haven't lost at Buck Shaw Stadium since March 3 in their first game of the season.
- The Earthquakes have won five straight matches at home, their longest home winning streak since 2005.
- San Jose has scored the most home goals (62) in the League since the start of the 2012 season.
- Chris Wondolowski scored the game's lone goal on Sunday and has now scored in five straight games against Sporting KC. The 2012 MLS MVP has five goals in five games in his Earthquakes career against KC.
- Wondolowski is now tied for the MLS lead with five game-winning goals in 2013. He is also tied with Jason Kreis for fourth on the all-time game-winning goals chart in MLS history with 31 in his career.
- Wondolowski scored on San Jose's only shot on goal of the second half.
- Jon Busch recorded the 100th regular season win of his MLS career on Sunday and moved into a tie for the MLS lead with 82 saves in 2013.
- Sporting KC's next two matches will be on the road as the team travels to Chicago for Friday's rivalry match at Toyota Park.
- Sporting Kansas City controlled 50.8% of the possession on Sunday, the ninth straight match the team has had the advantage in possession. The team ranks first in MLS for possession this season with 56.57% overall.
- Sporting KC midfielder Oriol Rosell will receive the good behavior incentive and have his caution accumulation total reduced by one following Sunday's match.
- Jacob Peterson started his first match since June 1st on Sunday. The appearance was his 175th MLS game played (including postseason) in his career and he surpassed 9,000 minutes played (including postseason) in his career on Sunday.
- Teal Bunbury's 44 minutes played on Sunday was a season-high after returning from a torn ACL suffered last season. Prior to Sunday, Bunbury's longest appearance was 17 minutes on July 7.
- Sporting Kansas City was without Kei Kamara, Graham Zusi, Josh Gardner and Paulo Nagamura due to injury on Sunday. Zusi turned 27 on Sunday.
- Aurelien Collin's ten cautions lead MLS this season and match his MLS single-season high set in 2011.
- Collin recorded the 28th shot of his 2013 season on Sunday, tying his single-season career high set last year.
- Seth Sinovic led all players with five open crosses on Sunday. He recorded the 13th shot of his 2013 season on Sunday, setting a new single-season career high.
- Oriol Rosell led all players with 62 passes on Sunday.
- Soony Saad led all players with four fouls suffered on Sunday.
- Jaime Alas started his first MLS match on Sunday for the Earthquakes.
- Christian Duke was named Orlando City SC's 2013 Rookie of the Year on Sunday. The midfielder joined Sporting KC's USL PRO affiliate on loan in March.
- Dom Dwyer's 15 goals for the Lions tied for the USL PRO lead in goals scored this season. He played in 13 games for Orlando City SC this season and received the Fans' Player of the Year Award.
Sporting Kansas City suffered their eighth loss of the season on Sunday evening at Buck Shaw Stadium. The Earthquakes' Chris Wondolowski scored the lone goal of the match in the 55th minute. Despite the loss, Sporting KC remains top of the Eastern Conference with 39 points.
Man of the Match
Uri Rosell put in a solid 90 minute performance in midfield for Sporting KC. Rosell led all players with 62 passes, won two of four aerial duels, and had three interceptions. The midfielder leads all Sporting KC field players (non goalkeepers) in minutes played this season.
The 55th minute goal scored by Wondolowski was the difference in the match. Up until that point, it was a scoreless match and neither side had generated many great scoring chances. While it wasn't the best defending from Sporting KC, there should be credit given to Wondolowski for a solid finish.
A few stats
- Sporting KC have had the majority of possession in nine straight MLS matches
- Aurelien Collin led Sporting KC with eight aerial duels won
- Seth Sinovic led all players with a 92.7% passing accuracy
Preki, who's full name is Predrag Radosavljević, is one of the greatest players in Kansas City history with 71 goals and 98 assists. Along with an illustrious career, Preki was recently inducted into the inaugural Sporting Legends class with teammate Tony Meola.
He's also featured in this week's MLS Insider and his possible connection to the invention of spell check. You can check out the MLS Insider segment below as part of Judah Friedlander's MLS Storytime.
For this week's Prep Talk, I spoke with Earthquakes beat writer for CSNBayArea.com Robert Jonas.
What's been the reasons San Jose has struggled offensively this year?
"I'll start off by saying that clearly last year was an incredible year in terms of the franchise record of 72 goals scored but they've dropped precipitously this year with only 25 goals after 24 games. I believe the statistic is they had 47 goals at this point last year with 10 games remaining. Talking with the coaches, Mark Watson specifically, he feels that their offense has the tools with Chris Wondolowski, Alan Gordon, and Steven Lenhart. It's not been the forwards but rather they aren't getting the same delivery in the box that they enjoyed last year. Shea Salinas specifically mentioned to me that he knows it and the other wingers know it. They're not getting into dangerous enough spaces where they are getting the quality in the box. It doesn't mean the Earthquakes aren't getting the ball into the area. They are actually getting quite a few crosses but the quality hasn't been there. A team that thrives on that sort of route one, up the middle simple soccer is not getting the deliveries they need. In terms of the record, the Earthquakes are doing very well at home. If you look at the points at home, it's about the same as last year but the biggest issue has been their road record. It's been abysmal. They have only one win all season on the road and that's pretty much not going to cut it if you are going to make the playoffs. You need to get points on the road. The Earthquakes are riding a four game home winning streak right now which is their longest since 2005. They just have not found a recipe to get points on the road and that's pretty much the reason they are sitting in eighth place right now."
San Jose's been one of the best teams at home in recent seasons. What makes them so tough to beat at Buck Shaw Stadium?
"I'll go back to last season as well as this season and basically speak to the venue (Buck Shaw) itself. Buck Shaw Stadium is nothing to look at. It's not a destination like Sporting Park would be for instance. The Earthquakes love playing there. It's got one of the best playing surfaces in the league and the fans are right on top of the field and give the Earthquakes a lot of support. There are supporters groups on both ends of the field. The players get a rise out of playing at Buck Shaw Stadium in a way that maybe they're not getting on the road, that pyschological edge that playing at home gives them. And then there's the comforts of knowing what to expect. It's a field, dimension, style, et etc that they are used to and plays into their successes well. I can extend that as they've done well at Stanford for the games they've played up there and they've done well at the other places around the Bay Area they've visited. It's a little bit of that home cooking and comfort level that seems to allow them to do well."
What are the San Jose players and coaches expecting from Sporting KC on Sunday?
"A lot of the guy pointed to the game last year that was played at Sporting Park and what a fast chase game that was. 2-1 was the final and the Earthquakes felt that maybe they could have gotten a draw. They know they are in for essentially a track meet. They know that Kansas City's not a team that will dottle on the ball and possession like they've seen Portland or Real Salt Lake do. Kansas City is going to take it right at you, use speed to get forward and they're going to use a lot of that aerial attack. Whether it's in the run of play or especially on set pieces when they can get Besler and Collin forward. Those two guys specifically were mentioned. Not just as defenders and how hard it's going to be for the Quakes wingers to get proper service into the box but on set pieces we know how dangerous Aurelien Collin can be. They are looking at him as a guy that they have to be very careful with in terms of that aspect of the game. Most importantly though, they feel they are ready for the game. They are kind of looking forward to a game that will be played at a faster pace and feel that they have the engines, if you will, to not only keep up but do the damage they need. That seems to be their mindset going into the match."
Today's #TGIF features the first ever goal at Sporting Park, scored by C.J. Sapong against the San Jose Earthquakes on June 17, 2011. Sporting KC won that match 1-0 and is unbeaten in their last four vs San Jose.
New Amsterdam Vodka and Shellback Rum will be hosting the team's official watch party at Teocali Mexican Restaurant (2512 Holmes St., Kansas City, MO) on Sunday. The pre-party starts at 6 p.m. CT with Sporting KC's match in San Jose kicking off at 9 p.m. CT live on KSMO-TV and the Univision Deportes Network. The #SJvSKC watch party will feature specials on New Amsterdam vodka, Shellback rum and tequila, as well as other prizes and giveaways!
Family dinner at the new patio in @TeocaliMexRest ... God bless yall
— Aurelien COLLIN (@ampC2) August 16, 2013
In case you missed it, Sporting Kansas City's Matt Besler was on The Border Patrol Thursday morning talking U.S. men's national team and the upcoming EPL season. Following the interview, Besler joined Nate Bukaty on 810WHBTV to discuss Sporting KC's recent form and the team's goals for the remainder of the year. Check it out below:
With 10 games to play in the MLS regular season, Sporting Kansas City is in pole position atop a tight Eastern Conference race that sees the top three teams separated by just two points.
And while #SJvSKC -- a clash of the top two teams from the 2012 season -- gets Sunday all to itself on the league fixture list, Saturday's eight MLS matches loom large. None are bigger than Philadelphia-New York at 7 p.m. CT at Red Bull Arena on the NBC Sports Network.
Sporting KC supporters will surely be rooting for the two Eastern Conference contenders to end in a draw and split the points, however history suggests otherwise. The two teams have met nine times in MLS history and they're yet to end on level terms. New York has the all-time advantage with a 6-3-0 record against the Union, including a perfect 4-0-0 record at home in the series.
Check out the NBCSN promo below and for more MLS coverage on the channel, tune in the new episode of MLS Insider tonight at 6:30 p.m. CT.
An MLS partner since 2008, Volkswagen was front and center around #MLSAllStar activities in Kansas City last month. From the Volkswagen 5K Jersey Run at the Kansas CIty Power & Light District to the 2013 Volkswagen Junior Masters National Tournament at the Overland Park Soccer Complex to presenting the Volkswagen MVP to AS Roma's Alessandro Florenzi at Sporting Park, the official automotive partner of Major League Soccer was at the heart of the summer showcase.
Check out the company's official video recap, released yesterday, showing how Volkswagen brings one of its mottos for car design to the soccer field: "Never Stop Playing."