Sporting KC get off to winning start at home

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Sporting KC get off to winning start at home

The Cauldron putting on a fine display in Sporting KC MLS home opener

The Cauldron putting on a fine display in Sporting KC MLS home opener

Sam Pryke

The Cauldron putting on a fine display in Sporting KC MLS home opener

Sam Pryke

Sam Pryke

The Cauldron putting on a fine display in Sporting KC MLS home opener

Sam Pryke, Reporter

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Sporting KC got off to a winning start at home in the MLS matchup against Philadelphia Union. Sporting finished the game 2-0 thanks to goals from Ilie Sanchez and an own goal from Jack Elliott.

On a sunny but cold day, the game started quietly with Philadelphia having the majority of the play without threatening.

Once the game settled, Philadelphia began to cause Sporting some issue. Marco Fabian creating a few opportunities for the away side without troubling Tim Melia in goal for Sporting,

20 minutes into the game, Sporting began to make some headway, with fan favorite Jonny Russell driving into the box. That resulted in a penalty which Ilie calmly converted in front of the jubilant cauldron.

As the half ended, Philadelphia defender Elliott came close with a glancing header just wide of goal.

The second half began the same way the first ended, with Philadelphia forcing Melia to claw away a corner kick before Elliott blasted a shot straight into the keeper’s arms at the 48th minute.

On the 57th minute, Sporting was handed an advantage after Fabian was given a red card for serious foul play.

Sporting KC stalwart, Graham Zusi stepped up to take the resulting freekick and hit the frame of the goal, which the visitors were lucky to get away with.

Sporting was now in complete control of proceedings, without overly testing the resolve of the Philadelphia defence.

However, at 66 minutes Russell was causing issues down the right-hand side with direct runs and putting dangerous crosses into the area, only for Ilie to blast over from close range.

After exhorting plenty of pressure, the home side finally got the second goal. Gerso Fernandez put a teasing ball into the box only for Elliott to deflect the ball past Andre Blakein goal.

Immediately after the goal, Philadelphia attempted to mount an unlikely comeback by throwing extra bodies forward without any luck.

The referee blew for full time to give Sporting their first MLS victory of the season, making the record 1-1.

Sporting will be back in action at home on March 30 as they face Montreal.

 

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