Match Recap

Recap: Sporting slips to frustrating 1-0 loss in fiery battle against New York Red Bulls

Sporting Kansas City (4-11-4, 16 points) slipped to a maddening 1-0 loss against the 10-man New York Red Bulls (9-5-5, 32 points) on Sunday night at Children’s Mercy Park.

U.S. international defender Aaron Long scored the lone goal of the game in the 53rd minute, and although Sporting dominated the late stages after Red Bulls defender Sean Nealis was ejected for denying an obvious goal scoring opportunity in the 70th minute, the visitors emerged with all three points to take first place in the Eastern Conference. Sporting, meanwhile, suffered their third straight home defeat as Manager Peter Vermes’ 500th match as the club’s head coach ended in bitter frustration.

A holiday atmosphere permeated Children’s Mercy Park as the world-class venue played host to its 200th MLS match, pitting a pair of MLS originals who were squaring off for the 58th time in regular season action. Sporting’s lineup featured just one change from last weekend’s road loss at Seattle Sounders FC as 19-year-old right back Kayden Pierre earned his first career MLS start, replacing injured veteran Graham Zusi.

Felipe Hernandez provided the game’s first flashbulb moment within 60 seconds of kickoff, curling a well struck free kick from the left wing that carried inches over the crossbar. Less than three minutes later, left back Logan Ndenbe won Sporting another set piece that Remi Walter sent to captain Johnny Russell on the far side of the penalty area, but the Scottish winger’s shot under duress skipped wide.

The hosts carved out an even bigger chance off a set play in the 13th minute. Andreu Fontas glanced Hernandez’s out-swinging corner kick across the face of goal to Daniel Salloi, whose first-time side volley skipped marginally high of the frame. Shortly thereafter, Russell embarked on a breathtaking solo run into the box, swiftly beating two New York defenders, only to see his low drive blocked by Red Bulls goalkeeper Carlos Coronel.

Salloi asked further questions of the New York defense midway through the first half, combining with Ndenbe on the left edge of the box and forcing Coronel into a save at the near post. The Red Bulls gloveman made another stop a moment later, dropping left to corral Khiry Shelton’s 20-yard strike from a central position.

Inclement weather in the Kansas City area prompted a 45-minute delay before play resumed at the half-hour mark. Sporting were then desperately unlucky not to take the lead on the cusp of intermission, with Russell’s low blast off a clever Salloi feed repelled by Coronel’s outstretched foot.

New York opened up Sporting’s defense twice inside the first three minutes of the second period, but neither Cristian Casseres nor Tom Barlow tested goalkeeper Tim Melia with their wayward attempts. Melia sprung to Sporting’s rescue in the 51st minute, however, diving right to smother Barlow’s volley.

An end-to-end spectacle continued to entertain as Sporting instantly traded another punch at the opposite end, but Coronel stuck out his mitt to thwart Russell on the breakaway. The Red Bulls then saw a speculative long-range effort go begging, with Melia making a brilliant save to deny Luquinhas.

The Red Bulls capitalized on the chaotic sequence with 53 minutes on the clock. Luquinhas took a short corner kick to Lewis Morgan, whose lofted ball to the back post was headed home by Long for his career-high equaling third goal of the MLS campaign.

A contentious moment unfolded in the 70th minute when referee Marcos DeOliveira consulted VAR to determine whether a handball infraction from Nealis prohibited Cam Duke from breaking free on goal. After marching to the midfield sideline and checking the play, DeOliveira overturned his initial yellow card decision and issued Nealis a straight red.

New York entered the weekend ranking last in MLS in effective playing time at under 50 minutes per match, and the time-wasting tactics of the 10-man Red Bulls were on full display during a choppy and disjointed final half hour. Even so, the head official added just seven minutes of stoppage time for Sporting to find a last-gasp equalizer. It nearly came at the 95-minute juncture, but Nicolas Isimat-Mirin’s leaping header from Russell’s corner kick was cleared off the goal line.

Sporting will look to bounce back on Saturday as the club begins a three-game road swing against CF Montreal. Kickoff is slated for 6:30 p.m. CT with live coverage on 38 The Spot, and the Sporting KC app.

2022 MLS Regular Season | Match 19
Children's Mercy Park | Kansas City, Kansas
Attendance: 19,065
Weather: 86 degrees and cloudy

Sporting KC 0-1 New York Red Bulls
Sporting KC 0-1 New York Red Bulls
Sporting Kansas City (4-11-4, 16 points)
New York Red Bulls (9-5-5, 32 points)

Sporting Kansas City: Tim Melia; Kayden Pierre, Nicolas Isimat-Mirin, Andreu Fontas, Logan Ndenbe; Remi Walter, Felipe Hernandez (Marinos Tzionis 85'), Cam Duke; Johnny Russell (C), Khiry Shelton, Daniel Salloi

Subs Not Used: John Pulskamp, Kaveh Rad, Ben Sweat, Robert Voloder, Jake Davis, Roger Espinoza, Uri Rosell

New York Red Bulls: Carlos Coronel; Dylan Nealis, Sean Nealis, Aaron Long (C), John Tolkin; Frankie Amaya, Cristian Casseres; Luquinhas, Omir Fernandez (Cameron Harper 26'), Lewis Morgan (Serge Ngoma 66'); Tom Barlow (Patryk Klimala 57')

Subs Not Used: Ryan Meara, Juan Castillo, Steven Sserwadda, Dru Yearwood

Scoring Summary:
RBNY -- Aaron Long 3 (Lewis Morgan 3) 53'

Misconduct Summary:
RBNY -- Cameron Harper (yellow card; unsporting behavior) 57'
RBNY -- Sean Nealis (red card; DOGSO) 73'
RBNY -- John Tolkin (yellow card; unsporting behavior) 79'
RBNY -- Frankie Amaya (yellow card; unsporting behavior) 83'
SKC -- Andreu Fontas (yellow card; unsporting behavior) 90'

Match Statistics
Match Statistics
Shots on Goal
Corner Kicks

Referee: Marcos DeOliveira
Assistant Referee: Jose Da Silva
Assistant Referee: Matthew Nelson
Fourth Official: Alyssa Nichols
VAR: Jorge Gonzalez
AVAR: Peter Balciunas