By The Numbers presented by KDOT: #LAFCvSKC | Aug. 11, 2018

"By The Numbers" is a season-long series sponsored by The Kansas Department of Transportation, giving a statistical preview of every Sporting KC match.

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A pair of teams tied for third place in the Western Conference will meet for the first time on Saturday as Sporting Kansas City (10-6-6, 36 points) visits Los Angeles Football Club (10-6-6, 36 points) at Banc of California Stadium. Kickoff is set for 9:30 p.m. CT on FOX Sports Kansas City, FOX Sports Midwest Plus, FOX Sports GO, Sports Radio 810 WHB and ESPN Deportes KC 1480 AM.

Sporting KC endured a turbulent month of July but returned to winning ways last weekend with a massive road victory over the Houston Dynamo. Having welcomed striker Krisztian Nemeth and defender Andreu Fontas to the fray this week, Manager Peter Vermes' men now turn their attention to an LAFC side that wields one of the most prolific attacks in MLS.

Numbers paint a mixed picture heading into the game: Sporting KC has fared well in the state of California over the last three seasons and boasts a strong record in inaugural meetings against expansion sides, but LAFC has yet to lose at home in their short history. We take a statistical look at the fixture in our newest edition of By The Numbers.


  • 2018 MLS record: 10-6-6, 36 points (4th in West)
  • 2018 MLS home record: 5-0-5 (19 GF, 8 GA)
  • Last MLS match: L 1-2 at New York Red Bulls on Aug. 5
  • Last five MLS matches: 1-2-2, 5 points (W-T-L-T-L)
  • LAFC ranks second in MLS with 2.05 goals per game.
  • LAFC has been shut out just twice this season, tied for the fewest in MLS.
  • LAFC is 5-0-5 at home this season and 8-0-5 in all competitions at Banc of California Stadium.
  • LAFC is winless in five straight games (0-2-3) across all competitions, including Wednesday’s Open Cup semifinal against Houston that ended 3-3 after 120 minutes with a hat-trick from Diego Rossi. LAFC lost 7-6 on penalties.
  • LAFC is one of four MLS teams to have three players with at least seven goals this season (Adama Diomande 9, Carlos Vela 8, Diego Rossi 7).
  • LAFC has conceded 12 goals across its last four games in all competitions.
  • LAFC has conceded 12 goals in the final 15 minutes of matches this season, tied for third-most in MLS.
  • Former Sporting KC midfielder Benny Feilhaber is the only LAFC field player to start all 22 MLS matches this year, while former Sporting KC forward Latif Blessing is the only other LAFC field player to appear in all 22 MLS matches this season.
  • Forward Adama Diomande has scored nine goals in just 11 MLS matches this season, but could miss Saturday with a hamstring injury.

 Sporting KC

  • 2018 MLS record: 10-6-6, 36 points (3rd in West)
  • 2018 MLS away record: 4-4-3 (16 GF, 16 GA)
  • Last MLS match: W 1-0 at Houston Dynamo on Aug. 4
  • Last five MLS matches: 1-3-1, 4 points (L-T-L-L-W)
  • Sporting KC is 8-3-3 in their first meetings against expansion teams dating back to 2005, the start of the MLS expansion era.
  • Sporting KC is 3-0-2 in the state of California since the start of 2016, going 2-0-1 at LA Galaxy and 1-0-1 against San Jose.
  • With 12 games still to play, Sporting KC has already equaled last year's regular-season goal total of 40.
  • Sporting KC is 4-4-3 on the road this season after winning just two MLS away matches in all of 2017.
  • Sporting KC is the only Western Conference team without a negative goal differential on the road (16 GF, 16 GA).
  • Sporting KC has scored multiple goals in eight of its last 11 games since the start of June.
  • Sporting KC leads MLS in shots per game (17.1) and passing accuracy (84.2%) while ranking second in average possession (58.5%).
  • Forward Diego Rubio leads MLS with four goals as a substitute. Sporting KC has received a club-record 11 goals from substitutes this season in all competitions.
  • Forward Daniel Salloi has 15 combined goals (nine) and assists (six) this season in all competitions, more than any other MLS Homegrown Player.
  • Forward Johnny Russell leads Sporting KC with 17 combined goals (nine) and assists (eight) in all competitions.
  • Forward Krisztian Nemeth could make his 2018 Sporting KC debut on Saturday, having scored 16 goals and seven assists for the club across 33 competitive matches in 2015
  • Midfielder Ilie Sanchez leads MLS with 809 successful passes in the attacking half and ranks sixth with 39 chances created from open play.
  • Midfielder Roger Espinoza has a team-best and career-high eight MLS assists this season.
  • Graham Zusi leads MLS defenders with 43 chances created and ranks second in the league in touches (1,920).
  • Goalkeeper Tim Melia ranks second in MLS with eight shutouts.

Milestones and Miscellany

  • In last Saturday's 1-0 road win over Houston, midfielder Gianluca Busio became the third-youngest player to start a match in MLS history and the second-youngest to record an assist at 16 years and 68 days.

Team stats (2018 regular season)

MLS rank in parenthesis (source: Opta)

Category (per game) Sporting KC LAFC
Goals scored 1.82 (6th) 2.05 (2nd)
Goals conceded 1.36 (8th) 1.68 (t-13th)
Shots 17.1 (1st) 15.3 (3rd)
Shots on goal 5.7 (5th) 5.9 (3rd)
Shooting accuracy 45.3 (17th) 50.6 (8th)
Passing accuracy 84.2 (1st) 83.3 (3rd)
Possession 58.5 (2nd) 52.7 (6th)
Duels won 53.6 (10th) 54.1 (8th)
Tackles won 11.1 (20th) 12.5 (7th)
Interceptions 13.7 (10th) 14.7 (5th)
Clearances 16.7 (18th) 18.1 (13th)
Fouls committed 11.2 (11th) 10.5 (20th)
Fouls suffered 10.3 (17th) 13.4 (4th)
Shots faced 11.9 (5th) 13.4 (11th)