Well… That wasn’t awesome.
Sporting Kansas City once again under-perform and drop points, this time against the former worst team in the conference.
SKC dominated possession (60.2%), shots (18), passes (446), passing accuracy (79.8%) and crosses (25), but somehow it didn’t end with the ball in the back of the net.
Even with all of those “good” numbers, SKC’s xG against the Rapids was 0.8. I’m not a big fan of the xG stat, but even I can understand that 0.8 is no bueno.
To quote the man in charge: “I’d like to score some goals. I think that’s the biggest thing.”
For the seventh time this season, Peter Vermes has had to answer for the lack of goals. And honestly, it’s hard to find many positives in what he said, and it might not be possible until SKC finds a win.
The first half was actually an enjoyable back-and-forth between two teams with something to prove. The backline of Graham Zusi, Robert Castellanos, Dany Rosero and Robert Voloder made their second-straight start and showed much of the same promise they showed last week.
Castellanos and Rosero made their case to be the center back pairing going forward, but Voloder was on the receiving end of the mistake that led to former Sporting forward Diego Rubio’s goal. I wouldn’t be surprised of Voloder returns to the bench once Tim Leibold is healthy.
A look at the GameFlow shows that Rubio’s goal killed Kansas City’s momentum.
— GameFlow (@GameFlowxPG) April 9, 2023
Sporting had been piling on the pressure, but a deflected shot by Felipe Hernandez that should have been called a corner, was not. Which led to Colorado’s counter and Rubio’s long-range effort that scooted past a flat-footed Tim Melia.
It’s tough to continue looking for positives, and it doesn’t even feel like the right thing to do at this time. Sporting fans are not happy, and they have every reason not to be.
But the team did look better, or at least as good as they did against the Philadelphia Union last week. The obvious hope is that the more time Pulido and Russell spend on the pitch with the rest of the starters, the sooner we will earn more wins and at least points. Maybe even score some goals.
The team didn’t look uninspired or out of gas. They looked frustrated. The ball just isn’t going into the back of the net.
At the end of the day, we are effectively a fifth of the way through the season and even with our best roster (minus Gadi Kinda), Sporting KC is an effective bye-week for opponents.
The next opportunity to turn the season around won’t be an easy one. SKC travels to San Jose to take on the sixth place Earthquakes whose only losses have come at the hands of Atlanta United and St. Louis City.
If you are looking for another stat that can help you hold on to some hope… there is this:
— Chad Smith (@PlayFor90) April 11, 2023