First in the Eastern Conference. First in MLS in goal differential. First in MLS in goals allowed. And now first in the MLS power rankings.
The last two months has been kind to Sporting Kansas City as Peter Vermes' squad has lost only once in its last 10 League matches with a 7-1-2 record over that span. Sporting KC's form has not only seen them leap to the top of the Eastern Conference - with a share of the MLS Supporters' Shield - but it has drawn praise from the around the League including a No. 1 spot in this week's MLSsoccer.com power rankings. Here is what the editors at MLSsoccer.com had to say following Sporting KC's 4-1 win over Toronto FC.
Toronto put up more of a fight than 4-1 would indicate, but SKC swept them aside just the same with that textbook relentlessness. They're now 7-1-2 since the start of June and top the Supporters' Shield race.
The defending champs were back to their physical, high-pressing ways against Toronto, and solidified their spot at the top of the Eastern Conference standings with a 4-1 win. That said, Jon Kempin's second-half save with the game in the balance proved critical.
During the last 10 matches, Sporting KC has outscored opponents 17-9 with two shutouts. Vermes has also continued his streak of using a different lineup in each match this season
SI.com's Liviu Bird moved Sporting KC up two spots in his weekly rankings, but still has them No. 2 behind 2013 MLS Cup runners-up Real Salt Lake.
It may play in a generally weaker conference, but Sporting KC continues to keep pace with the Western teams while dominating in the East. Perhaps its sternest test yet from an Eastern Conference team is up next, with a visit from D.C. United following a trip to Nicaragua to play Real Estelí in the CONCACAF Champions League (D.C. also plays in midweek, but at home against a weaker Waterhouse FC).
After a midweek draw against Real Esteli, Sporting KC will host D.C. United Saturday evening. United are coming off a 4-2 win last weekend against the Colorado Rapids and a 1-0 CCL win over Waterhouse FC. Limited tickets are available for the match and can be purchased at Ticketmaster.com or by calling 888-4KC-GOAL. Saturday's match will kick off at 7:30 p.m. CT on KMCI's 38 the Spot and across the Midwest on SKCTV.