OVERLAND PARK, Kan. – Chance Myers and C.J. Sapong each scored a pair of goals to lead Sporting Kansas City to a convincing 5-0 win over the New England Revolution on Wednesday night in a U.S. Open Cup play-in match at the Blue Valley District Activities Complex.
Aurelien Collin also scored for Sporting KC, which will now enter the formal U.S. Open Cup bracket in the third round, joining seven MLS clubs and eight teams from lower divisions in the last 16 of the tournament.
An early onslaught staked the home side to a 3-0 lead inside 25 minutes, as Myers scored a pair of close-range goals in the ninth and 19th minutes and Sapong added a third in the 24th minute. Collin (81st minute) and Sapong (88th minute) tacked on late strikes to provide the final score line.
Four days after suffering a 2-1 loss to the San Jose Earthquakes at Buck Shaw Stadium, Revolution head coach Steve Nicol ran out a completely different starting lineup against Sporting Kansas City – changing out all 11 players – with an eye on Saturday’s upcoming league match against the league-leading LA Galaxy.
Left back Didier Domi made his first appearance since April 30 after recovering from a left quad strain, while Andrew Sousa made his professional debut with a start alongside Pat Phelan in central midfield.
Sporting KC – playing its first home game of 2011 after opening the season with nine consecutive road games in all competitions – took a 1-0 lead in just the ninth minute. Former Revolution defender Seth Sinovic’s looping pass sprung Omar Bravo down the left wing and Bravo sent the killer ball across the face of goal for Myers to finish emphatically from close range.
Myers doubled his haul 10 minutes later to push Kansas City’s lead to 2-0 in the 19th minute. Bravo was again the creator as his initial shot from a tight angle was pushed away by Revolution goalkeeper Bobby Shuttleworth, but Myers pounced on the rebound and tucked his shot inside the left post.
Sapong got in on the act in the 24th minute as the hosts extended their lead to 3-0. Sinovic overlapped down the left wing and finished his surging run with a low pass across the box for Sapong, who once again gave Shuttleworth no chance with an authoritative finish from six yards out.
The Revs came into the game a bit as the first half progressed – most notably pressuring SKC with four consecutive corner kicks in the 35th minute and a long-distance drive from Phelan in the 42nd minute – but eventually entered the halftime break still trailing by three goals.
Shuttleworth made a stunning save on second-half substitute Ryan Smith in the 61st minute, lunging to his right to push the Englishman’s effort around the post after he was clean through on goal. Two minutes later Shuttleworth came to the Revolution’s rescue again, tipping Graham Zusi’s 30-yard free kick over the bar.
Sporting KC goalkeeper Eric Kronberg turned away the Revolution’s best chance in the 68th minute, sprawling to his left to deny Alan Koger’s driven 20-yard effort.
Shuttleworth made way for Tim Murray in the 72nd minute, marking the former Providence College goalkeeper’s Revolution debut. Murray had to pick the ball out of the back of the net in the 81st minute when Smith’s left-wing cross found Collin free six yards from goal for a well-placed header inside the left post.
Sapong rounded out the scoring in the 88th minute with his second of the game, stealing the ball off Revolution defender Franco Coria before pushing into the right side of the box and calmly chipping a shot into the near upper corner.
The Revs will return to league action on Saturday, May 28, when they host the LA Galaxy at 8 p.m. at Gillette Stadium.
2011 U.S. Open Cup – MLS Play-In Round 3
New England Revolution at Sporting Kansas City
May 25, 2011 – Blue Valley District Activities Complex
Sporting Kansas City 5, New England Revolution 0
SKC – Chance Myers (Omar Bravo) 9
SKC – Chance Myers (unassisted) 19
SKC – C.J. Sapong (Seth Sinovic) 24
SKC – Aurelien Collin (Ryan Smith) 81
SKC – C.J. Sapong (unassisted) 88
New England Revolution: Bobby Shuttleworth (Tim Murray 72), Didier Domi, Otto Loewy, Franco Coria, Ryan Kinne, Sainey Nyassi (Zak Boggs 60), Andrew Sousa, Pat Phelan ©, Michael Augustine (Diego Fagundez 70), Zack Schilawski, Alan Koger
Substitutes Not Used: Darrius Barnes
STATS*: Shots: 10; Shots on Goal: 3; Saves: 3; Corner Kicks: 9; Offside: 0; Fouls Committed: 11
Sporting Kansas City: Eric Kronberg, Seth Sinovic, Aurelien Collin, Matt Besler, Michael Harrington, Graham Zusi, Luke Sassano, Chance Myers (Kei Kamara 79), Craig Rocastle (Birahim Diop 72), Omar Bravo © (Ryan Smith 58), C.J. Sapong
Substitutes Not Used: Jimmy Nielsen, Roger Espinoza
STATS*: Shots: 11; Shots on Goal: 8; Saves: 3; Corner Kicks: 5; Offside: 2; Fouls Committed: 11
* Note that all statistics are unofficial
NE – Didier Domi (caution) 20
NE – Pat Phelan (caution) 45
NE – Alan Koger (caution) 74
Referee: Sorin Stoica
Assistant Referees: Lance Mesman, Matthew Foerster
Fourth Official: Landis Wiley
Weather: Cloudy and 55 degrees
- With the loss, the Revs failed to qualify for the formal U.S. Open Cup bracket for the second year in a row while attempting to enter through the MLS Play-In process … in 2010, the Revs dropped a 3-0 play-in match at New York
- This was just the second meeting outside of MLS regular-season competition between the two teams … the clubs previously met in SuperLiga 2009, playing to a 1-1 draw at Gillette Stadium
- Tim Murray made his Revolution professional debut with his substitute appearance in goal in the 72nd minute … he previously had seen only action in reserve division games and in the USL lower divisions while on loan
- Andrew Sousa made his professional debut for New England … his previous time had come via the reserve division
- Didier Domi saw his first time since suffering a strained quadriceps muscle at Chivas USA on April 30