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The Leftovers: A result that's both good and disappointing

08/28/2012 10:05 AM

05/16/2014 7:32 PM

Was Sporting Kansas City's 1-1 draw with New York Sunday night a disappointment? Well, yes and no.

A: Yes.

Because anytime you have a chance to earn three points over a conference rival, you really should. Also, anytime you fail to win a game against an opponent you hold to ZERO SHOTS ON GOAL, you probably should win that too.

B: No.

Because, even though the Red Bulls were without Thierry Henry, this wasn't a push-over squad. Holding a team with Sebastien Le Toux, Kenny Cooper, Joel Lindpere and Tim Cahill to ZERO SHOTS ON GOAL, that's pretty impressive. Besides, Kansas City didn't lose their spot at the top of the Eastern Conference table. Points are points.

Let's re-heat some leftovers (sorry they are a day late!), and see what cool facts, stats, notes and quotes we can dig up from the match.

• Sporting Kansas City are now 14-7-5 on the season and remain in first place in the Eastern Conference with 47 points, two points ahead of New York.

• However, they fall to three points behind San Jose in the race for the Supporter's Shield.

• Manager Peter Vermes: "I think that it was a great effort on our part. I think that we gave everything we had from the opening whistle to the end of the game in order to get the three points. I thought that we started off with great pressure. We were swarming them, and they couldn't get it out of their half of the field. They couldn't come up with a solution for building out."

• The 1-1 draw was the 105th all time for KC. That's more than any other team in MLS history.

• Speaking of history, Sunday night was the first time the franchise has not allowed a shot on goal and didn't pick up the win.

• The defense held New York to season lows in shots (3), shots on goal (0) and corner kicks (0).

• It was the third match this year that Kansas City has not allowed a shot on goal. Before 2012, the franchise had done that feat just three times.

• Goalkeeper Jimmy Nielsen didn't register a save for the sixth match this season.

• August has been good to Sporting, they are 3-0-1 this month.

• Kei Kamara picked up his 10th goal this season, matching his single-season career high.

• He now has 44 goals in his seven MLS season; 30 with Kansas City.

• Kamara leads MLS with shots (100) and shots on goal (40) this season. The last time a KC player registered more than 100 shots, it was Preki (146) in 1996.

• Kamara's fourth minute goal was the eighth scored by Sporting Kansas City in the first 15 minutes of an MLS match this season, tying the club for the most in MLS.

• Graham Zusi picked up an assist on the goal, giving him 12 on the season -- trailing only Seattle's Mauro Rosales.

• Zusi has gathered an assist now in three-straight matches and four out of the last five.

• New York's only goal came from a KC own-goal, the second own-goal conceded by KC this year.

• Vermes was blunt afterwards: "The goal that we give up is soft. We shouldn't give up that goal by any means."

• Kansas City has allowed 23 goals in 26 MLS matches for a 0.88 goals against average. That's still best in the league.

• At home, KC are particularly tough to break down, allowing just nine goals in 13 home matches.

• Sporting improves to 22-2-6 in all competition when Matt Besler, Aurelien Collin, Seth Sinovic and Chance Myers start in defense.

• Nielsen's 1.07 career goals against average in the regular season is the second best mark in MLS history among goalkeepers with 4,000 minutes played.

• With a 0.88 GAA this season, Nielsen is on pace to best the club mark set by Tony Meola (0.92) in 2000.

• Oh yeah, that year for Meola? He was the regular season and MLS Cup MVP; the goalkeeper of the year; and the Wizards won the Supporter's Shield and MLS Cup.

• The Great Dane leads MLS with 14 victories and 11 shutouts this season.

• Sporting KC outshot New York 14-3 on Sunday, and have now outshot their opponents by 10 or more 13 times in 2012.

• Also: KC have outshot their opponent in 20 of 26 matches this season.

• KC leads MLS with 418 shots this season and has allowed the fewest shots against (254).

• Teal Bunbury made his 50th start (including playoffs) in his career. Sadly, he won't make any more this season after he has surgery this week to repair a torn ACL and damaged LCL. Tough break.

• C.J. Sapong, recovering from a hip-flexor strain, will be Bunbury's primary replacement in the starting lineup. Vermes says that Sapong is "probably at 85% at best. But his fitness is going to pump up now that he played tonight; so hopefully, that is going to be good for the next game."

• Defender Aurelien Collin made his 50th MLS appearance (including playoffs).

• It wasn't a great match for Collin, as he received a yellow card and will miss Saturday's match with Toronto due to card accumulation.

• The Frenchman tipped his replacements to do well in his place: "I'm not worried about missing next game. Neven (Markovic) and (Lawrence) Olum are good players. It hurts that I must miss the next game, and I'm very upset. Sometimes, I say too much to the referee and I get too sensitive, but the calls the referee makes are not always right. I have been here one-and-a-half years, and it has been the same problem. I just have to keep my mouth closed."

• At least he knows it's a problem. That's the first step, right?

• Kamara made his 175th MLS appearance (including playoffs) and surpassed 7,000 regular season minutes in a KC uniform.

• Kansas City will travel to face New York twice in the next two months. Some KC players are excited for the challenge.

• Roger Espinoza: "When we go over there it's going to be a great game. With the way we play and the way they play at home, it's going to be exciting. They really go at teams, and we like that. If we lose over there, it will be because they played better than us. We aren't going to go over there and sit back like they did tonight. Everybody on our team wants to win, and you do that by trying to go forward, whether it's home or away."

• The attendance on Sunday was 18,491, and that means it is the 12th sell-out of the season for Sporting KC.

Time for the lightning round. Sporting Kansas City is

• 7-2-4 when tied at halftime in 2012.

• 12-2-3 when scoring first in 2012.
• 6-3-2 when scoring one goal in 2012 and 5-2-2 when allowing one goal this season.
• 12-6-5 when wearing Sporting Blue this season.
• 12-5-3 when outshooting an opponent in 2012.
• 7-5-3 when the temperature is above 75 degrees at kickoff in2012.
• 7-5-3 in the central time zone this season.
• 8-5-3 against the Eastern Conference this season.
• 11-6-4 on grass surfaces this season.


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