Sporting drops match to Dallas, 2-0

Sporting Kansas City’s two-game winning streaked was snapped in a 2-0 defeat to FC Dallas on Saturday night at Children’s Mercy Park in Kansas City, Kansas.

In a Western Conference battle contested amid sweltering conditions with temperatures in the mid-90s, FC Dallas (9-8-5, 32 points) jumped to 6th place in the provisional standings while dropping Sporting (6-8-7, 25 points) five points below the playoff line.

The visitors struck on either side of halftime through their leading scorers, surging ahead on a 37th-minute Dominique Badji goal before 18-year-old Jesus Ferreira doubled the cushion on 57 minutes.

Sporting totaled 18 shot attempts of their own, but just two tested Dallas goalkeeper Jesse Gonzalez as manager Peter Vermes’ men incurred their fourth home loss of the 2019 regular season.

An opportunity for Sporting to bounce back will arise Friday when the club visits New York City FC (7-3-9, 30 points) at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx. Kickoff is set for 6:30 p.m. with live coverage on FOX Sports Kansas City Plus, FOX Sports Midwest Plus and FOX Sports GO.

The hosts threatened near the half-hour mark when Graham Zusi whipped a teasing free kick into a crowded penalty area, but Seth Sinovic’s snap header skipped wide of the target.

Dallas capitalized on a costly Sporting giveaway shortly thereafter, as Michael Barrios intercepted a stray back pass and squared low for Badji.

The Dallas forward slotted past goalkeeper Tim Melia for his sixth goal of 2019, a team-best total that Ferreira tied 20 minutes later.

Dallas’ second tally stemmed from a Santiago Mosquera cross. Ferreira chested the ball to his feet at the top of the box, eluded a pair of Sporting defenders and finished into the corner to put his side comfortably ahead.

Sporting received an injection of energy in the 65th minute when influential midfielder Roger Espinoza entered as a second-half substitute for his first competitive action since April 14, having missed the last three months with a knee injury.

Less than a minute after his introduction, Zusi’s delectable service to the far post was headed just wide and into the side netting by Sinovic.

Forwards Daniel Salloi and Krisztian Nemeth entered as late-game substitutes and both threatened to put Sporting on the scoresheet, but Salloi’s drive was blocked behind for a corner kick and Nemeth’s bending effort was palmed over the bar by outstretched goalkeeper Jesse Gonzalez.

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