Which young guns grabbed the spotlight in Week 2 of the 2021 MLS season?
That was question broached by MLSsoccer.com writer Greg Seltzer, who tabbed Sporting Kansas City midfielder Gianluca Busio as one of the best performers of the weekend.
Busio, of course, bagged Sporting's lone goal in an exciting 1-1 draw with Orlando City SC on Friday night at Children's Mercy Park. He spent the first half operating as a center forward before dropping into his natural midfield position for the final 45 minutes.
"The crown jewel of Sporting’s academy project is another who’s reached veteran status relative to his age (he turns 19 next month), and appears to be carrying a heavier load this year as a result," Seltzer wrote. "Busio was deployed as a false 9 from the start of Friday’s 1-1 draw with Orlando City and struck a goal that was both clinical and opportunistic in the dying moments of the first half, then dropped deeper once Alan Pulido entered for the second stanza and worked as a 10."
He continued: "For much of his time in MLS, we’ve debated Busio’s ideal position as Peter Vermes shuffled him around the park. There’s a silver lining to that, especially in terms of the versatility it’s cultivated in the North Carolinian. How his coaches put that to use will make for interesting viewing in the months and years ahead."
Busio was named to the MLS Team of the Week bench for his strong outing against the Lions and will look to carry that momentum into Saturday's road test against Real Salt Lake at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah. Kickoff is slated for 1 p.m. CT with live coverage on Bally Sports Kansas City Plus, Bally Sports Midwest Plus, BallySports.com, the Bally Sports app, ESPN 94.5 FM and La Grande 1340 AM.