by Brian Turrel
Sporting Kansas City let a stoppage time goal slip by, undoing 90 minutes of high-quality play and settling for a 1-1 draw against the Vancouver Whitecaps at Children’s Mercy Park on Saturday night.
Sporting nearly overcame the 51st minute loss of striker Krisztian Nemeth, who was sent off for a dangerous tackle. Instead Sporting extended its winless streak to seven games.
Head coach Peter Vermes praised his team after the match.
“I think our team played excellent tonight,” Vermes said. “We worked hard. We gave nothing away.”
Nemeth was responsible for the team’s only goal, which came in the 37th minute. Johnny Russell found some open ground on the right side and bounced a shot off Vancouver goalkeeper Maxime Crepeau. The rebound fell to Nemeth, who decoyed defender Doneil Henry and then slipped the ball into the open net.
After Nemeth’s disqualification, Sporting continued to selectively press its attack while parrying Vancouver’s possession advantage. They picked up some offensive momentum from Yohan Croizet, who came on in the 81st minute.
However, in the last minute of stoppage time, as the crowd prepared to celebrate a victory, Vancouver’s Ali Adnan slipped a pass to left winger Derek Cornelius directly in front of the goal for an equalizer.
Sporting KC will play next at home at 5 p.m. Sunday, May 26, against the Seattle Sounders.