"By The Numbers" is a season-long series presented by the Kansas Department of Transportation that gives a statistical preview of every Sporting match. To visit the series archive, click here.
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Within touching distance of first place in the ultra-competitive Western Conference, Sporting Kansas City (9-6-3, 30 points) returns to Children’s Mercy Park on Saturday for the club’s penultimate regular season home match against the Colorado Rapids (5-4-4, 19 points). Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. CT with tickets available on SeatGeek.com and live coverage on FOX Sports Kansas City, FOX Sports Midwest, FOX Sports GO, ESPN 94.5 FM and La Grande 1340 AM.

Manager Peter Vermes’ side went 3-1-1 during a demanding stretch of five games in 15 days from Oct. 3-17, most recently earning a 2-2 draw at Chicago Fire FC last Saturday. Currently third in the conference standings, Sporting can keep pressure on co-leaders Seattle and Portland by defeating a Colorado outfit that hasn’t played since Sept. 23 due to a COVID-19 outbreak within the team.

With plenty to play for this weekend, we take a statistical look at the fixture in our newest edition of By the Numbers, presented by the Kansas Department of Transportation.


  • Sporting and Colorado have squared off 80 times in all competitions, making the Rapids the most frequent opponent in Kansas City history.
  • Sporting holds a narrow advantage with 32 wins, 29 losses and 19 ties, including a 26-24-16 record in the regular season. 
  • In 31 regular season home games against Colorado, Sporting are 20-6-5 all-time with 64 goals scored and 33 conceded. However, the Rapids were victorious on their most recent trip to Children's Mercy Park with a 3-2 win on Sept. 21, 2019.
  • Sporting went 6-0-5 against Colorado from 2009-2015, but the Rapids have gone 7-3-3 in the series since August 2015.
  • The most recent meeting resulted in a 1-1 draw on Aug. 29 in Colorado as Academy products Cole Bassett and Gianluca Busio traded second-half goals.
  • The sides first met this season in the MLS is Back Tournament group stage on July 17, when Khiry SheltonAlan Pulido and Graham Zusi scored second-half goals in Sporting's 3-2 victory. Kellyn Acosta and Jonathan Lewis scored for Colorado in their losing effort.

Colorado Rapids

  • MLS record:5-4-4, 19 points (11th in Western Conference)
  • MLS away record: 3-1-1 (11 GF, 6 GA)
  • Last five regular season matches: 3-1-1, 10 points (T-W-L-W-W)
  • Last Match: W 5-0 vs. San Jose Earthquakes on Sept. 23
  • Colorado haven't played since Sept. 23 due to a COVID-19 outbreak within the team.
  • Colorado boast a 3-1-1 road record, outscoring opponents 11-6 on their travels.
  • Colorado rank fourth in MLS with 1.92 goals per game and have been shut out just once this season.
  • Colorado have just one loss in their last seven matches and have won three of their last four.
  • Colorado have scored 13 of their 25 goals after the 60th minute this season. Additionally, their nine goals after the 75th minute are the third-most in MLS.
  • Colorado have conceded 16 of their 20 goals in the second half.
  • Colorado ranks second in MLS with 84.5% passing accuracy and third with 11.5 chances created per game.
  • Colorado rank last in MLS in tackles won per game (7.2) and fouls committed per game (10.4).
  • Midfielder Cole Basset is the only MLS player with at least four goals and four assists in fewer than 10 appearances this season.
  • Defender Sam Vines has played every minute for Colorado this season.
  • Forward Jonathan Lewis leads Colorado with five goals this season despite making just five starts in 13 total appearances.

Sporting Kansas City

  • MLS record:9-6-3, 30 points (3rd in Western Conference)
  • MLS home record: 4-3-1 (14 GF, 12 GA)
  • Last five regular season matches: 3-1-1, 10 points (W-W-W-L-T)
  • Last Match: Tied 2-2 at Chicago Fire FC on Oct. 17
  • Sporting have scored in 17 of their 18 regular season matches this season, including all eight home games at Children's Mercy Park.
  • Fourteen of Sporting's 18 regular season matches this season have been decided by one goal or less (6-5-3 record).
  • Sporting have outscored opponents 14-8 after the 60th minute this season.
  • Sporting are tied for the MLS lead with two wins when trailing at halftime this season (2-4-0 record).
  • Sporting are the only MLS team to have five players with at least four regular season goals (Johnny Russell 6, Alan Pulido 5, Gadi Kinda 5, Khiry Shelton 4 and Erik Hurtado 4).
  • Forward Alan Pulido's nine combined goals (five) and assists (four) are the most in MLS among players with 10 or fewer regular season appearances.
  • Pulido and midfielder Gadi Kinda are two of four MLS newcomers with at least five goals and three assists this season.
  • Forward Erik Hurtado has played the fewest minutes of any player with at least four goals this season.
  • Forward Johnny Russell has four goals and three assists in his last eight appearances. He has scored or assisted on six of Sporting's last seven home goals.
  • Sporting are 4-1-2 this season when defender Winston Reid starts.
  • Goalkeeper Tim Melia has saved 11 of the 25 penalty kicks he has faced in his MLS regular season career, including four of the last five. His 0.56 goals conceded percentage on penalties is the lowest in MLS history among keepers who have faced at least 10 penalty kicks.

Milestones and Miscellany

  • Sporting goalkeeper Tim Melia is one shy of his 50th career regular season shutout for the club.
  • Melia is also two shy of tying Tony Meola for the most saves in Sporting's regular season history at 507.

Recent #SKCvCOL meetings

  • Regular season record vs. Colorado: 26-24-16
  • All-competitions record vs. Colorado: 32-29-19
T 2-2
Felipe Gutierrez and Diego Rubio goals spark Sporting rally after Dom Badji and Joe Mason strike early
W 1-0
Daniel Salloi scores match-winner in first half
T 1-1
Diego Rubio gives Colorado lead before Johnny Russell's late free kick stunner restores parity
L 2-3
Sporting surges ahead with own goal and Gerso strike, but Colorado roars back through Kei Kamara, Diego Rubio and Tommy Smith
W 3-2
Khiry Shelton, Alan Pulido and Graham Zusi score as Sporting overcomes goals from Kellyn Acosta and Jonathan Lewis
T 1-1
Academy products Cole Bassett and Gianluca Busio trade second-half goals

Team Stats (2020 regular season)

(Per Opta; MLS rank in parenthesis)


<strong>Category (per game)</strong>
Goals scored
1.72 (6th)
1.92 (4th)
Goals conceded
1.39 (13th)
1.54 (15th)
14.7 (5th)
15.0 (4th)
Shots on goal
4.5 (13th)
5.3 (5th)
Shooting accuracy
44.3% (22nd)
46.0% (16th)
Shot conversion rate
11.7% (11th)
12.8% (12th)
Shots faced
9.6 (2nd)
12.7 (17th)
Passing accuracy
81.6% (14th)
84.5% (2nd)
50.2% (13th)
53.7% (6th)
Chances created
9.9 (10th)
11.5 (3rd)
Duels won
51.6 (12th)
49.9 (18th)
Tackles won
10.2 (9th)
7.2 (26th)
11.4 (20th)
9.9 (24th)
14.8 (20th)
15.8 (15th)
Fouls committed
12.7 (13th)
10.4 (26th)
Fouls suffered
10.9 (19th)
10.8 (21st)