Sporting Kansas City concluded the first leg of their 2019 preseason, presented by Children’s Mercy, by playing three 60-minute scrimmages – two against FC Tucson trialists and one against FC Arizona – at Phoenix Rising FC Soccer Complex in Tempe, Arizona on Wednesday. Sporting KC posted 6-0, 3-0 and 0-0 scorelines in the three matches, respectively.
Sporting KC cruised to a 6-0 victory in the first match. Kelyn Rowe gave his side the lead with a well-taken left-footed volley from 20 yards out in the 21st minute, before an even more stunning volley doubled the lead two minutes later when Graham Zusi struck a first-time dipping volley into the top corner from 25 yards.
Krisztian Nemeth extended the lead when he swept the ball into the corner following a flowing move in the 40th minute, and Johnny Russell made it four in the 44th minute – powerfully slotting home after being found in the area by Daniel Salloi.
Nemeth got his second in the 52nd minute – clipping a cute finish beyond the goalkeeper after an excellent pass from Zusi, before Rowe completed the rout two minutes later with a precisely placed shot that crept in off the post following Salloi’s cutback.
The second 60-minute scrimmage got off to a similar start, with Gerso Fernandes earning a penalty kick in the 12th minute after he was bundled over in the box, and Yohan Croizet stepped up to powerfully stroke the ball into the bottom right corner.
Four minutes later, Gianluca Busio tucked the ball home from close range after being well found by Gerso Fernandes, and Erik Hurtado completed the scoring with his first goal in Sporting blue – sending a clinical finish in off the underside of the crossbar from the edge of the area following Croizet’s cross in the 27th minute.
The third and final 60-minute scrimmage ended in a scoreless stalemate, as FC Arizona took the field to replace the FC Tucson trialists.
Sporting KC now heads back to Kansas City on Thursday before Monday night’s Season Kickoff and Kit Launch event at the Nelson-Atkins Museum. The side heads back to Scottsdale, Arizona on February 6 for the second leg of preseason ahead of the Champions League opener against Toluca at Children’s Mercy Park on Febraury 21.
Sporting Kansas City vs. FC Tucson Trialists
January 30, 2019 – Phoenix Rising FC Soccer Complex (Tempe, Ariz.)
Sporting Kansas City 6, FC Tucson Trialists 0
SKC – Kelyn Rowe (Unassisted) 21’
SKC – Graham Zusi (Unassisted) 23’
SKC – Krisztian Nemeth (Graham Zusi) 40’
SKC – Johnny Russell (Daniel Salloi) 44’
SKC – Krisztian Nemeth (Graham Zusi) 52’
SKC – Kelyn Rowe (Daniel Salloi) 54’
Sporting Kansas City Lineup: Tim Melia; Graham Zusi, Andreu Fontas, Matt Besler, Rodney Wallace; Ilie Sanchez, Kelyn Rowe, Felipe Gutierrez; Johnny Russell, Krisztian Nemeth, Daniel Salloi
Sporting Kansas City 3, FC Tucson Trialists 0
SKC – Yohan Croizet (Penalty Kick) 12’
SKC – Gianluca Busio (Gerso Fernandes) 16’
SKC – Erik Hurtado (Yohan Croizet) 27’
Sporting Kansas City Lineup: Adrian Zendejas; Jaylin Lindsey, Botond Barath, Graham Smith, Seth Sinovic; Kuzain, Roger Espinoza, Gianluca Busio; Yohan Croizet, Erik Hurtado, Gerso Fernandes
Sporting Kansas City 0, FC Arizona 0
FCA – Player X (Yellow Card) 41’
Sporting Kansas City Lineup: Eric Dick; Will Little, Kamar Marriott, Camden Riley, Justin Bilyeu; Tucker Lepley, Felipe Hernandez, Tyler Freeman; Sean Karani, Wilson Harris, Daniel Johnson