Sporting Kansas City closed the first leg of preseason with a 0-0 draw against South Korean side Seongnam FC. The club will fly home to Kansas City on Monday before returning to Tucson next Sunday for the 2016 Desert Diamond Cup.
Sporting KC played two 45-minute halves against Seongnam on Sunday with a different set of 11 players in each half. Manager Peter Vermes used 19 first team players in the scrimmage, with Swope Park Rangers defenders Tommy Meyer and Jacob Vancompernolle and 2016 SuperDraft pick Faik Hajderovic playing the first 45 minutes.
Neither team was able to muster much offense in the first half. Midfielder Jimmy Medranda, who turned 22 on Sunday, tallied the lone shot attempt for either side.
The second half featured a flurry of action for both sides. Sporting KC nearly broke through in the 47th minute when Brad Davis played the ball off to Dom Dwyer in the 18-yard-box. Dwyer’s attempt was parried out for a corner kick and Ike Opara’s header off the ensuing set piece just missed the target.
In the 65th minute, Honduran midfielder Roger Espinoza took the ball to the endline and played it Davis. The 2014 World Cup veteran one-timed his shot attempt and forced another great save from Korean goalkeeper Kim Keun-Bae
Moments later, Tim Melia saw his first real test of the match off a Seongnam corner kick, but the 2015 MLS Comeback Player of the Year reacted quickly to save the attempt and keep the seven-time K League Classic champions off the board.
Sporting KC’s 2016 preseason, presented by Children’s Mercy, will continue next week with Desert Diamond Cup matches against the Columbus Crew, New England Revolution and Colorado Rapids. All Desert Diamond Cup matches played on the Stadium Field will be streamed on YouTube. Select matches played on the Grandstand Field will be streamed. Follow Sporting KC on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram throughout the week for more details.
1st Half Lineup (4-3-3): Alec Kann — Saad Abdul-Salaam, Tommy Meyer, Jacob VanCompernolle, Sinovic — Sonny Mustivar, Jimmy Medranda, Jordi Quintilla — Faik Hajderovic, Daniel Salloi, Connor Hallisey
2nd Half Lineup (4-3-3): Tim Melia — Chance Myers, Ike Opara, Kevin Ellis, Amadou Dia — Lawrence Olum, Benny Feilhaber, Roger Espinoza — Brad Davis, Dom Dwyer, Graham Zusi