On This Day presented by UMKC - May 31, 2020

On This Day presented by UMKC: Preki leads historic comeback at New England in 2003

On This Day presented by UMKC takes daily strolls down memory lane and celebrates memorable moments in Sporting Kansas City history. As one of Major League Soccer's proud charter members, Sporting has a decorated past full of thrilling victories, amazing goals, momentous off-the-field developments and more. This series pays tribute to these specific instances, turning back the clocks while treating fans to nostalgia and club history lessons. For more, visit SportingKC.com/OnThisDay.


Seventeen years ago today, the Kansas City Wizards achieved a rare comeback that has since been matched just twice in club history.

Heading into the final 20 minutes of their away matchup against the New England Revolution on May 31, 2003, the Wizards found themselves trailing 2-0 and staring almost-certain defeat in the face. Never before had the team reversed a two-goal deficit after the 70th minute in an MLS road game.

Enter Preki, the talismanic playmaker who was amidst his second MLS MVP campaign despite the fact that he was weeks away from his 40th birthday. Preki cut the deficit in half in the 72nd minute on an assist from Chris Klein and scored the equalizer 11 minutes later, leveling the score at 2-2.

The thrilling contest at Gillette Stadium would end all square, marking the first time ever that Kansas City had come away with a road result after trailing by two goals with 20 minutes remaining. The club has notched this feat on three occasions all time, as listed below.

ROAD RESULTS WHEN TRAILING BY TWO GOALS AFTER 70 MINUTES
(SPORTING KC, MLS REGULAR SEASON)

Date Opponent Trailed Result Scorers
05/31/2003 at New England Revolution 0-2 T 2-2 KC: Preki 72', 83'
NE: own goal 44', Kamler 63'
04/18/2009 at Chicago Fire 0-2 T 2-2 KC: Wolff 78', 89'
CHI: McBride 12', 20'
04/25/2015 at Houston Dynamo 1-3 T 4-4 KC: Nemeth 2', Dwyer 74', Feilhaber 80', 95'
HOU: Barnes 11', 46', Bruin 45', Rodriguez 83'

Preki ended the 2003 regular season with 12 goals and 17 assists, landing MLS MVP honors in the process. He remains the only player to win MLS MVP more than once.

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