It's been five months since Sporting Kansas City won the MLS Cup championship, and manager Peter Vermes says he still hasn't watched the final match against Real Salt Lake.
Until this week.
By request, Vermes popped the championship match DVD into the laptop, and over the next half-hour, he cycled through several of the biggest moments from that Dec. 7 victory at Sporting Park.
Sporting KC will receive its championship rings in a ceremony prior to Sunday's match against Columbus, which offers us a chance to look back.
Through the manager's eyes, here are the key plays that brought Kansas City its first major professional championship in more than a decade:Sapong's missed opportunity
Vermes: "I remember this play. C.J.'s gotta score. He's gotta score that. He finds himself wide open. We created some great opportunities, but these are the kinds of chances, you as team are always thinking, you have to convert on those, because you're not going to get many more of those in this type of game."Alvaro Saborio gives Real Salt Lake 1-0 lead in the second half
Vermes: "You can see (Aurelien) Collin is up, so is Seth (Sinovic) and (Matt) Besler is kind of sweeping. If he's going to do that, he has to go to Saborio at that point. I can't show you the (back) line because we don't see it now, but we didn't all come together, and then we take our eye off the guy we talked about is so dangerous."Question: Does the deficit change your strategy?
Vermes: "No, not at the moment. There's so much time left in the game that I figured our opportunities would come. I thought we were playing well and creating some stuff against them.
"If we're not getting the chances, then there may be an adjustment in the way that we're playing. But if we're getting the chances and we're not scoring, then it may be the adjustment of a player. There's a big difference between the two."Collin pulls Sporting KC even, 1-1
Vermes: "The one thing I'll say that was in my mind going into this game is I thought this year we were a very good set piece team. I felt like the opportunity was going to present itself. I think it was a tremendous header by Collin. It's one thing to get up for the ball. He puts it in a place where there's absolutely no way the goalkeeper can get to it.Question: We see Dom still pressing a lot after the goal. Why did he get the championship start?
Vermes: "I think that he's a bit of a gnat. I think he was very dangerous at this point. He was pressuring the other team — not only with the way he pressures but when he has the ball and the way he moves into spaces. I think it was hard for their two big defenders to deal with a smaller stature, low-center-of-gravity guy like him."Graham Zusi nearly puts Sporting KC ahead in overtime
Vermes: "This is a big chance by Zues. Huge chance. It was a very difficult ball for him. That's an awkward shot. The way the ball came in, for him to get it off like the way he did was very good."Sapong taken down in box in overtime, but no call
Vermes: "I think it's the right call. I don't think it's a penalty kick."Real Salt Lake go-ahead overtime goal negated by offsides call
Vermes: "When I was watching this one, it seemed like we had a very good line in the back. He was playing with the line. And you can see he's off."Question: How did the field conditions make it more difficult to hold a line and defend?
Vermes: "I think that end of the field for both teams was very difficult. Even defending, if you overcommit and the guy cuts back on you, you're toast."Zusi misses potential match-clinching penalty kick
Vermes: (Shakes head) "Can't believe that."Jimmy Nielsen saves Sebastian Velasquez's penalty kick to keep Sporting KC alive
Vermes: "This is it. I had a feeling Jimmy's going to make a save. I really did. I think he had a feeling that with that guy being left-footed, he's going to go to the short corner.
"I thought Jimmy was incredible in the penalty kicks. I have a lot of confidence in him in that stuff."Aurelien Collin buries first career penalty kick
Vermes: "That was one of the best penalty kicks I've seen. Tremendous. I was glad to see Collin make his because I wasn't sure he was going to make his. And the fact that he did, it gave me a lot of hope and confidence that we were going to get the next piece.
"I was more concerned when he got up there (than anyone)."Lovel Palmer misses penalty kick, Sporting KC wins MLS Cup championship
Vermes: "When he comes up, I know he's missing. I thought he was going to sky it over the goal like Eddie Johnson did. I just had a feeling this guy was missing.
"It was a crazy up and down in the penalty kicks. I was blown away it got to that point."Question: What are your first emotions when Palmer misses?
Vermes: "I think the two biggest things is one, I'm happy for the fans and the other is for the team and the ownership and the club because of the effort to get here and what everyone put into this."